March 26, 2017

Deuteronomy 1:8 “See, I have given you this land. Go in and take possession of the land that the Lord swore he would give to your fathers—to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—and to their descendants after them.”

God supplies, but in many cases we have to receive that supply actively rather than passively. We can do nothing to generate God’s grace, for example, but we have to believe in order to receive His salvation. In that case it is simply a choice, but often we are called to be even more active. This particular instance was certainly active, with large scale physical movement and even military action, so we need to be prepared for that. It is no less God’s provision, but He calls us to be active participants in the process. Sometimes when that is the case we leave God out of our thinking and feel either that we have done it on our own, which generates pride, or that we have to do it on our own, which can generate despair. Neither is accurate. Moses touched on that issue a little later, when he said, “You may say to yourself, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.” (Deuteronomy 8:17-18) God gives us abilities, but if we don’t exercise them they don’t do us much good. God provides abundantly, but we need to be willing to do our part to participate in His plan.

This is a somewhat painful Word to me this morning, because I have been entirely too passive about a number of things. Two days ago I finally went to talk to the contractor who was recommended to us for building a nursing home, and discovered that the preliminary work necessary for rezoning and the like is something they do for free. Had I been more active and gone to them in December, the surveying and such that is going on with the land next door would be on our behalf rather than for a real estate developer. I have also been less than persistent in taking tracts around in the neighborhood. The return on that is certainly low, but doing nothing isn’t the answer. My major gift and calling is teaching, but I have to have people to teach! It is entirely true that I can’t make things happen on my own, but I need to be active in participating in what God is doing. All sorts of things are going on, in the church and in society around us. I need to be active in seeking God for my part in it all, so that His will may be done on His schedule for His glory.

Father, thank You for this Word. Forgive me for being passive, for feeling entitled, for taking You for granted. Help me be faithful as a steward of all You provide, opportunities as well as objects, so that indeed, Your Name may be acknowledged as holy and Your kingdom come as Your will is done, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!


About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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