Here’s a quick side note to what we’ve been talking about lately. I took a cup down from my cupboard this morning and noticed several quotes on it. One of them caught my eye. It said, “If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it- Albert Einstein.” I thought that was very interesting because most of us run from and even mock “crazy”ideas.
Then I began to think about the “crazy” things God told various persons in the Bible to do. God told Noah to build an ark, and he was mocked. God told Abraham to leave his family and go to another land that he did not know of, and his family couldn’t understand. God told Moses to go before pharaoh and tell him to let His people go, and pharaoh and all of Egypt looked at him like he was crazy. To defeat the people of Jericho, He told Joshua that he and the children of Israel should silently march around the city for 6 days and then blow trumpets on the 7th, and the residents of Jericho looked out and laughed at them. Want New Testament examples? After Peter came back from fishing all night and catching nothing, Jesus told him to cast his fishing nets on the other side of the boat in the middle of the day (when fishing was typically not done), and Peter initially thought Jesus didn’t know what He was talking about. In the middle of a terrible storm, God told Paul to stay on a sinking ship so his life could be saved, and I’m sure, as they were bailing, many of the others on the ship thought he was literally committing suicide. I can go on and on and on, and in all these examples, God supernaturally showed up, gave them victory, and He was immensely glorified. As a matter of fact, I can’t think of anytime in the Bible when God’s instructions were “simple”…or should I say “comfortable”.
Before we go any further, let me define “crazy”. We’re not talking about things that are illegal, dangerous, or otherwise questionable and out of God’s character. If you hear a voice telling you anything that will bring you or anyone else harm, or is contrary to the Word of God, the voice you heard was not God!
With that out of the way, let’s bring this home. So, what has the Lord told you to do that you have run away from or mocked because it was “uncomfortable”? The critical part of hearing from God is actually receiving and obeying what He says. Otherwise, what’s the point to the communication, right? Faith is belief in action. Let’s examine Hebrews 11:1– Faith is the substance of things hoped for or the very core of things you believe, and the evidence or action on the things you can not see but believe. For example, you can believe that a certain politician is better for the job, but your belief means nothing until you go out and vote. You can believe that someone knows you love them, but until you say and demonstrate those three little words, “I love you”, it means nothing. You can believe God exists and sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to redeem you back to Himself, but until you consistenly obey Him and follow His course for your life, your belief means nothing because there will be no evidence! Remember, without faith [actions], it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). We must be bold and courageous to receive what He tells us in prayer and then do the crazy or uncomfortable things He told us to do. That idea that goes completely against what seems typical, safe and right by society, friends, family or even your own mind is exactly what God uses to confound the wise, grow and strengthen our faith, and bring Him the ultimate glory.
So, with all the world systems now failing…global economics, personal finances, politics, troubled marriage and families, etc., it’s time for us to push ourselves beyond our comfort zone and trust God. Take a look at Hebrews 10:35,38-39. Now say it with me- I am the just through Christ Jesus, and God, by His Spirit, speaks to me. When He speaks, I will not draw back or shrink in fear. I will listen and move in obedience because I respect, value and need my relationship with Him, and He takes pleasure in that. I will not turn back in unbelief, rejecting His love and plan for me, but will cling, trust in, and completely rely on Jesus Christ as I respond with my obedient actions by faith.