REPOST Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, provided by Christine Li, was first posted on April 24, 2016. Christine, a graduate of University of Pennsylvania, serves as a deaconess at Remnant Church in Manhattan, New York.
Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend
“Having All the Answers Misses the Point”
After all this had happened, Paul decided[d] to go to Jerusalem, passing through Macedonia and Achaia. “After I have been there,” he said, “I must visit Rome also.” 22 He sent two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, while he stayed in the province of Asia a little longer.
For the last couple Christmas vacations, my younger brother and I have passed away our time by buying ourselves at least one new video game to play together. This past year, we bought our game with very little time left, so we used a walk-through manual to help us. The manual gave us all the tactics to solve different puzzles and to prepare against different enemies. After playing the game for a couple of days, I felt oddly dissatisfied with the experience. We were beating the game, but having all the answers completely detracted from the joy of actually playing and experiencing it.
Isn’t it common that we also endlessly seek clarity for our steps in life? We think: “What degree should I get?” “What city should I move to?” “What ministry should I be a part of?” Sometimes, we think that it will be easier if God just lays out the steps in front of us. We might, after all, feel more in-control or assured if we just have the directions.
Good thing God knows our hearts and that, if we had all the answers, we would completely miss out on the entire process of exploring this world with Him. Even the Apostle Paul didn’t always know where He was going; even as a seasoned itinerant preacher, he still relied on the Spirit to give him direction – the phrase used here in Greek is “determined in the Spirit.” Paul could never have anticipated what would come with each day – jail, riots, beatings, or the occasional good reception. But from all accounts, he was always led by God’s Spirit and testified in joy of God’s goodness.
One analogy to help us remember this type of lifestyle is that our journey of following God is not one with the map showing all the twists and turns; rather, the journey is like following the GPS, step by step. God has a good journey planned for us. Is it the one you want to travel on? Let us give up our desire to control our paths or know all the answers. Instead, let’s continue to seek His presence and His leading at every juncture.
Prayer: Father, You know that I don’t always enjoy the unseen and unknown. It is sometimes hard to trust that You know where You are leading me and that the path is good. Help me give up on needing to have all the answers in front of me and enjoy the journey You have before me. Remind me that my good Father is working everything out for me today! Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Exodus 1