I'm grateful for the opportunities that I have each week to share from God's Word with those who have entrusted me with such an honor. It's humbling to think that people invite you into their hearts and minds in such a way. If I'm honest, at times I'm fearful, not in a stage fright kind of way, I've been doing this long enough to have gotten past that. When I say fearful, I mean more in the sense of, "God don't let me say anything that would cause someone to think incorrectly about your Word or Your plan for their life." In fact I often pray the prayer, "God don't let me screw this up." Perhaps that seems flippant to some but I assure you that it's heart-felt. God is moving in each of our lives even when we don't recognize it or even care to recognize it and I want to be sure that I don't get in the way of what God is doing in someone's life with an ill spoken word or worst yet, an incorrect interpretation of God's Word.
As a result of my desire to get out of God's way I often find myself cutting out, re-vamping or editing for time parts of a teaching that just don't fit into the overall theme or more often than not, can't be fully unpacked. To bring something up or as some say, "open that can of worms" would be foolish if time prohibits a comprehensive look and anything less would only serve to cause confusion. Thus, there is often much that goes unsaid.
Just this past week I shared a teaching based on the idea that God calls each of us to make an impact on those around us. You can listen to the full message here. Over the last few days I've felt prompted to revisit some of the areas of this talk and to further unpack a few of the ideas that were presented. The one that jumps out to me the most centers around the revelation of God. I said,
"God’s Word maps out for me His general revelation. My time in prayer allows me to discover His specific revelation for my life. The saints of the church, those who have gone before me allow me to walk in their wisdom."
This process of revelation is so often overlooked as we strive to become the people God has called us to become. Too often we spend all of our energy asking God to reveal to us His specific revelation for our lives. We want specifics from God on:
We long for God's specific revelation in these areas. We want details and a road map for what's to come and yet we don't give adequate time or even worse, we completely ignore God's general revelation as mapped out in His Word. When we don't hear from God in the way we imagined it would happen we throw our hands in the air in frustration and ask ourselves, "Why does God not care enough to reveal Himself to me?"
God's Word is packed full of lessons, direction, guidance and insight for us to pull from and apply to our lives. When we skip over God's general revelation as we're waiting for His specific revelation we miss out on so much of what He wants to reveal to us.
It's the Matthew 6:33 principle, "Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need." Of course this verse is written in the context of Jesus' teaching on money and possessions but the same principle applies.
It's Micah 6:8, "No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God." Again, not written in the context of general revelation versus specific revelation but the principle of first following God before getting caught up in the details of the sacrifice makes it applicable to this idea.
We get far too caught up in the details of following Jesus before we've first developed our ability to simply follow Him according to His Word.
2 Timothy 3:16 says, "All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right."
Let's make the commitment today and in the days to come to first and foremost look for God's general revelation before we get frustrated or feel slighted at His (in our faulty opinion) lack of specific revelation. Be encouraged and keep moving forward.