God Calls Us to be Humbly Daring!

 

For You are my hope; O Lord God, You are my confidence from my youth.  By You I have been sustained from my birth; You are He who took me from my mother’s womb; my praise is continually of You.

Psalm 71:5-6 (NASB)peak-experience

Psalm 71, written by David, speaks of God as a refuge and fortress and rock in the midst of the plots and schemes of ruthless men against him.  As I read again this morning verses 5-6 stood out to me.  It is clear that our great God is our refuge and strength in times of trouble.  If you’re facing trials and difficulties, know that you can find salvation and help in Him.

But as I read these verses this morning, the word that jumped off the page was confidence.  David declares that the Lord has been his confidence since his youth.  David understood there was no room for self-reliance.  Sure, there were huge failures in his life, but in the end, he always returned to the truth that without the Lord, he was hopeless.  Think of David’s defeat of Goliath, his willingness to trust God’s timing in becoming king as he fled from Saul, and his reliance upon God as he led Israel.

Two Mission-Cripping Mindsets
As you consider your own life, maybe you realize you are looking to yourself for confidence in far too many instances.  Doing this leads to two mission-crippling mindsets:

  1. Pride – If you fail to recognize God as the strength and provider of all things in your life, you begin to take credit for things that only God deserves.  This makes you a glory thief, and God will not share His glory!  This pride will quickly lead to Kingdom ineffectiveness.
  2. Fear – The opposite mindset created by self-reliance is that of fear.  If you believe it is up to you to change the world in your strength and abilities and you recognize how short you fall in being able to do this, you will be handcuffed by fear.  You’ll never dare to do great things because you think its up to you.  This too hinders you from experiencing the fullness of what God wants to do through you.

A Proper Balance
When we find our confidence in the Lord, we’ll find proper balance between pride and fear.  Pride is dispelled by confidence in the Lord because we recognize God as the source of power working through us to accomplish His mission.

Fear is dispelled when we understand its not up to us. All God is asking from us is surrender and obedience, and when we do this, we’ll see Him do things through us we never dreamed of doing.  We will risk boldly when we know it is Him working in us.

Both of these proper mindsets give God all glory for what He does.

O Lord, may we find our confidence in You today, and may this keep us humble while daring greatly as we see You at work through us to change the world.

Rest in Jesus,

Andy

 

Chronological Bible Reading – February 2 – The End of Ourselves

Today’s Reading: Exodus 1:1-4:17

The circumstances by which God would first deliver Moses and then prepare him for the call on his life are beautiful examples of God’s sovereignty, power, and plan.  Exodus begins with Joseph dead and the Israelites have multiplied greatly.  There is a new Pharaoh who doesn’t know the history of Joseph and is fearful of the vast number of these foreign Israelite people.  He forces them into slavery and hard labor.  He puts statutes in place to reduce the number of Israelites.  Namely, he commands the killing of all male Israelite children when they are born.

God has a plan to deliver His people and to display His majesty to the Egyptian people. It begins with a baby boy being born.  Moses is born, hidden by his mother, discovered by Pharaoh’s daughter and raised as a prince in Egypt.  When he is grown he sees himself as a potential deliverer for his people. He kills an Egyptian, the first sign of his self-sufficiency.

God knows in order to use Moses for the task of delivering His people, he will have to be humbled.  In Exodus 3:1, we see a prime example of this humbling process at its best.  By this point, Moses has gone from a prince in Egypt to a shepherd of a flock he doesn’t even own.  He is being broken of all self-sufficiency and pride.  However, in the midst of this time, God appears to Moses and gives him the call of delivering the people from slavery.  His response, “Who am I?” is exactly what God is looking for in him.  Moses knows he cannot do such a great task.

God has a broken vessel that He can use in Moses.  It is through broken and humble men and women that God can accomplish the most for His glory!  Don’t miss this.  We all want God to use us for great things.  The key to this is to come to the end of ourselves.  When we are empty of all self-sufficiency and pride, we are positioned to be used of God for purposes beyond our abilities.  Our lives will be predictable and mediocre when lived according to our strength and abilities.  But when we yield ourselves to be used by the God of all creation, our lives will be marked by things that can only be explained in terms of God’s power at work in us, and that is a life well lived.

Rest in Jesus,

Andy

Chronological Bible Reading – January 4 – The Tower

Today’s Reading: Genesis 10-11, 1 Chronicles 1:1-27

In the middle of some lengthy genealogies we find the account of the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:1-9). God’s intent following the flood was that man would multiply and spread over all the earth.  However, in this account we have a clear sign of the sinfulness of the heart of man.  Remember, though Noah “walked with God,” he and his family were still descendants of Adam, infected with a sinful nature as a result of the Fall. (See Romans 5:12). Therefore, as we’ll see throughout Scripture, man has a bent toward sin and rebellion. Continue reading