Friday, December 11th, 2009

I was not disobedient to the vision from heaven.

Acts 26: 19b

The situation that led Paul to talk about this particular vision was, to say the least, unusual; he was off on a journey in pursuit of what he thought was God’s will when he was stopped in his tracks by a light so intense that it caused him to become blind. He had encountered the Living God in all of His glory, and this appearance by the Lord was intended to leave no doubt in that rabbi’s mind about what had happened to him. God took Paul’s life work and the path that he had dreamed of following and radically turned it in a new direction.

The light may not always be that bright and the experience will almost certainly be different from Paul’s, but God speaks to everyone who calls Him Lord, and He grants us the blessing of dreams and visions to follow through this world. How well we listen and what we do with what he reveals to us is our choice. It can be very hard to make the sort of changes that God might ask of us, and the radical nature of following the Lord’s absolute will is truly frightening; yet, God never sets our hearts on goals that He won’t fulfill, and He never leads our minds into commitments that He can’t finish.

This world needs dreamers and visionaries, people who are no longer willing to simply settle for the way that things have always been; God wants to fill our hearts with His images of how the people around us can come to know, love, and relate to Him through our decision to follow. It is a simple fact that when God speaks His dreams into our hearts, like Paul, we need to let go of our fears and reservations and follow the new road that Christ lays out before us.

And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4: 19

It is common for people to dream about having it all; by nature we aspire to achieve goals and to gain the desires of our hearts. Some of us actually seem to accomplish most of their dreams, for they have success, fame, wealth, and stature in this world; these are the people that we looked up to as ideals when we were young, and they are the ones that we tend to envy as we mature. Whether they are politicians, athletes, actors, or business leaders their achievements are neither good nor bad in God’s eyes, and regardless of how well they have done in this world, one of the keys to achieving a lasting form of success is how much they still rely upon the Lord for the deeper needs of their hearts and minds.

There is a source of knowledge, wisdom, and understanding that is greater than the sum of all that people have accumulated through all of history; in fact, the Lord’s library of truth contains everything that any one will ever need, and He is the foundation and the starting point for all valid human understanding. When we realize that we have absolutely nothing on our own and that our greatest abilities are discovered at times when our personal resources are at their lowest, we are beginning to become available to God so that He can provide us with the infinite blessing that comes from the treasury of His riches. As we are needy and look to God for the satisfaction of those needs, He delights in giving, and His gifts are far greater than what we can imagine.

A day that is characterized by a personal sense of inability and lack of wisdom and skill to meet the challenges that are before me is not all that bad, for humility and need are the starting place for opening my mind to receiving the Lord’s superior understanding of living this day well. Every moment of this day can be filled with the glorious sense of accomplishment that my Lord wants to give to all of His children; since, He will walk with me through each step that I take, and Christ will supply all that I need as I take each of them.