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I created the perfect box for God, and He didn’t like it. God is like that, isn’t He? I want Him to be this way and act this way and handle circumstances this way, and He doesn’t always cooperate. Somehow He knows the right way to be and doesn’t need me to figure that out and inform Him. I wish I could learn that lesson.
Hear the words of Isaiah:
Who can fathom the Spirit of the Lord, or instruct the Lord as his counselor? Whom did the Lord consult to enlighten him, and who taught him the right way? Who was it that taught him knowledge, or showed him the path of understanding? (Isaiah 40:13-14, NIV)
The problem with the boxes that I build is that they are way to small and confining. God is awesome and mighty. God is eternal and majestic. God is expansive and all-knowing. God comes busting out of any box that I try to contain Him in. As Isaiah points out, no one has to teach God anything. He already knows. My main goal should be to plug in to what He already knows rather than trying to inform Him of what He should do.
For example, when I go to teach at a men’s or ladies’ retreat, I can come up with all of these brilliant truths to expound upon and these wonderful verses to share and these creative teaching methods to employ and hope that these methods and strategies impact someone that is at the retreat. Or, I can come quietly and often to the feet of Jesus and ask Him what I should teach, what verses I should share, and what teaching methods I should employ. When I figure it all out, I’m guessing what might work and hoping to hit hearts. Instead, I can listen to the Lord who already has it all figured out. He knows who is going to be there. He knows what is really going on in their lives. He knows what verses will impact their hearts. He knows what hurts He wants to heal and what sin He wants to convict. He knows all of that. Rather than me figuring that out and guessing, I should listen to Him and let Him reveal what He already knows.
I am desperately trying to learn how to let God out of the box I have made and let Him have the freedom to do things His way. After all, God’s thoughts are not like my thoughts and His ways are not like my ways (see Isaiah 55:8-9). His thoughts and ways are big and massive and right. My thoughts and ways are limited and feeble and so often wrong. God does things in ways I would never do them thereby accomplishing things I would never be able to accomplish. I’m so predictable and practical and ineffective.
When I plan on my abilities and brilliance accomplishing anything, it will be a small accomplishment indeed. When I listen to the Lord through His Holy Spirit and when I trust Him and do what He says, then He can accomplish life-changing things through me. I’m learning to let God take control of the situations and circumstances around me. I’m learning to let Him out of the box I have put Him in. And, I’m learning that both of us like that better. I’m so glad that God is too big to fit in the box that I had created for Him. Keep teaching me that, Lord. Too often, I’m a slow learner.