Recently I was mentoring someone who with tears claimed to deeply desire a change in her behavior patterns. There were certain thoughts that were consuming her mind, taking up valuable time, keeping her isolated mentally from those with whom she would otherwise be engaging, and creating an enormous amount of stress— which in her case exaggerated other health problems. I asked her the question, “Do you really want to be set free from this?”, to which she exclaimed, “Yes…as long as_______________doesn’t happen if I stop caring (aka worrying) so much about this.”
Her greatest fear was losing her ‘perceived’ control over the outcome. She wanted to be free from her fear, worry, and anxiety as long as SHE got to control the outcome; as long as SHE determined how and when she would be ‘set free’; and as long as SHE was able to be in charge of the other fine print ‘contract negotiations’ of the deal she was looking to make with God.
Have you ever felt this way? Like you wanted to make a ‘deal’ with God or negotiate a contract with Him? Perhaps a contract that might say something like: “If I do this, God, then you will do what I want, at the timing I want, in the way that I want you to do it. And if you do that, God, then you’ll get a great referral from me to my network. Now, please give me a ‘sign’ that you agree to this contract, and we’ll get right to this matter in the way described above. Please note God: Time is of the essence for the completion of the work described in this contract. It is anticipated by the parties that all work described herein will be completed within two (2) weeks of the date of execution, which is right now, and that any delay in the completion of the work described herein shall constitute a breach of this contract and a negative review on ‘Yelp.’”
In our human interactions with God we often want a contract; but God doesn’t do contracts, He makes covenants!
Here are a few thoughts to ponder as you think about the ‘contracts’ you try to make with God, whether you are aware of it or not.
God can control everything in the entire universe. It was all made by Him, and it is only in Him that ‘we live and move and have our very being’. He is a far better and more powerful Person to be in control of our lives than we are—even the wind and waves obey Him! (Mark 4:41)
His ways are higher than our ways. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9 ESV) Consider this, Daniel would not have experienced the miracle of seeing the mouths of the lions shut had he not been in the lion’s den. Rahab’s house was on the walls of Jericho, the very walls that God planned to have fall down for Joshua and his army. Yet, God made it possible that where she lived on that wall she and her household were saved.
We are to seek first God’s kingdom and He will add to us everything else that we need. This is a promise from God. “For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. ‘But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.’ So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:32-34 ESV
Do you know how to seek God first? You may want to check out this page for more tips on ‘how to grow and have a relationship with Jesus’. The woman I was mentoring wanted to seek her desires first, and then to add God. That mixed up order resulted in her experiencing worry and anxiety that got increasingly worse the more she tried to control the situation with which she was dealing. I know it’s an old cliche, but it’s true: “It’s time to ‘let go and let God.’” As a believer, when you fully begin to trust Him, and your actions back-up your proclaimed faith in Him, then you will experience peace that is beyond anything you could hope or imagine.
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful." John 14:26-27 ESV
What are the ways that you seek God first? Please share below.
Written by Jamie Shave