Machine or Personality

Some days I simply want a God who will tell me exactly what to do.  I must be getting old.  When I was younger I wouldn’t let anyone tell me what to do, let alone ask for someone to tell me what to do.  I was creative, idealistic, and full of endless possibilities.  Something happens to us as we age, though.  The luster of life begins to slip away and we desire the more mechanical.  What a sad thing.  As the pinnacle of creation we should be the most creative aspects of all creation.  We should never settle for mechanical we we can have personal, and personality.

You and I are not trains.  We have no tracks laid before us to mechanically guide us to our next destination.  We are a complex (“fearfully and wonderfully made”, so says the Psalmist) constitution of molecules, made in the image of God and inspired by the breath of God.  We were not, therefore, created to live our lives on railroad tracks.  For one seeking guidance from God this means we cannot merely rest on God’s sovereign ability to dictate all of life.  Instead, we must rest in our friendship with God, made possible through the work of Jesus on the cross.  This means God will personally guide us, usually through a still, small voice (those who are led by the Spirit will think the thoughts of the Spirit).  That voice may be God speaking to us, or it may be us sharing God’s thoughts.

As we seek God’s guidance today, tomorrow and the next day, let us keep this in mind – we were made for personal guidance, not mechanical guidance.  Let us not seek mere words of instruction, but the Father’s heart.  Let us not settle for dreams and visions, or signs and wonders, but keep seeking until we share the very mind of Jesus and begin to think the very thoughts of God.

E. Stanley Jones (a famous Methodist missionary to India) once wrote,

I believe in miracle, but not too much miracle, for too much miracle would weaken us, make us dependent on miracle instead of our obedience to natural law.  Just enough miracle to let us know He is there, but not too much, lest we depend on it when we should depend on our own initiative and on His orderly processes for our development.

Or as Dallas Willard writes, “Too much intrusion on a seed that has been planted, as on the life of a plant or a child, simply makes normal, healthy growth impossible.”  I pray that you and I can begin to hear the still, small voice of God and be led into normal, healthy growth as disciples of Jesus.

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5 thoughts on “Machine or Personality

  1. I’ve been pretty much a business failure for the last 11 years (pretty much as long as I’ve been married), when I WAS following my creative intuition… all that failure (mostly because I enjoy starting things and not finishing them). Our culture doesn’t reward the “starter” unless he sells his start up or at least nurtures it to success… Because of all of this, I have pretty much fallen into a rut where I don’t want to move only to fail again and I’m not angry enough anymore (as I was in my youth) to “show people” I can do it.

    So I pray and pray and pray and pray and you must be right, because God never tells me what to do. “Decision Making & The Will of God” by Dr. Gary Friesen writes an entire book saying what you said only using biblical examples and scriptures to prove the point.

    So I just sit in my rut and enjoy the daily mechanized things.

    I do have hobbies so I dabble in that. I invented a fuel caddy for the motocross track recently and just finished the prototype this week.

    I have TOO many interests and I like to go DEEP in all of them… only there is NOT enough time in life to do it all.

    I’m just torn emotionally all the time about career and even about things to do for Jesus. Why doesn’t He put it on my heart to want to do anything? I used to be a passionate person… not so much anymore.

    1. Thanks Kevin. I agree in that I have “TOO many interests” as well. I often imagine myself asking God, “Which one?” and God’s reply is, “Yes.” Like a parent who wants his children to pick something, anything to do and do well I think God often says, “Yes, pick one of those things and go with it. With my help it can be used for the kingdom.” I’m less and less convinced that there is one one right way to live my life (except in Jesus, that’s fixed) and more convinced that God created us to be creative and to use that creativity. That doesn’t always make it easier though. Blessings my friend.

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