Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
In Part 1, I was asking the question, How well do you know yourself? And I used the very simple illustration of the iceberg. Icebergs you can see 10% of the top and 90% is below the surface. That’s what you can’t see obviously.
That’s how people judge us—they only see the first 10%; the things that we say or the way we say it, or what sort of a person they think we are. What about the other 90%? Well, I said that God, through his Holy Spirit, can actually do something in the depths of our inner being, that 90%. And we can actually see that God has a plan and God can actually continue working in our lives. Now, it could be exciting as to what God is going to do with that, well that 100%, but particularly with that part we may not think about.
A king used to walk every evening along the beach to watch the sun setting into the sea. As it went down it sent a long shimmering reflection along the surface of the water that pointed directly at the king. And no matter where the king was on the beach that beam of light gliding along the surface of the water always, always, always pointed toward him. He concluded that this was because he was the king. He was immersed in his subjectivity. He was self-absorbed, feeling he was the centre of the world, when really he was wrong.
That might be too simple an illustration, but we can end up becoming so self-absorbed, we miss out on many opportunities to live well and interact with others.
Be Still and Listen to God
Take time to be still, and listen. The problem with today’s living is the number of distractions. And that includes well-meaning friends who want to tell us what to do and what to think. Why is it that they want to set us straight into becoming the people they would like? We need space, and we need time to be alone and listen. Find a trusted friend who can listen to your heart, and trust God to help you move out of your comfort zone. We may well be in a rut, and have been there for years, and it’s time to move out. It will feel awkward, and it will probably be hard—but we all need to move out of our comfort zone in order to move forward.
Isaiah 40:31 (CEV) says, “Those who trust the Lord will find new strength. They will be strong like eagles, soaring upwards on wings; they will walk and run without getting tired”.
God may have other plans for you.
I think of the 12 disciples who followed Jesus. Eleven of them died for their faith. They were willing to place everything in his hands, and they paid with their lives. They moved out of their comfort zone and left everything to follow him. I think of Abraham who left his home and country to follow God’s leading. That was a risky thing to do, and that was costly to him too. Like him, we may need to broaden our focus on God and his plan for us. It’s easy to remain comfortable in life, where we only focus on our problems, our pain, or anything that makes us feel uncomfortable. But God may have other plans for you.
Look Beyond your Present Circumstances
It may be that you need to lift up your eyes from where you are. At times we can get so focused on where we are, the problems at hand, on the rut we are in, that we fail to see everything that is going on around us. We need a broader perspective in life.
We need to look beyond our present circumstances to the Promises of God! In Abraham’s life story the ‘Promised Land’ is a great symbol of the collective promises of God. God had given Abraham a number of promises: a father of many descendants and nations, success, blessing, protection from the enemy, and most notably the Promised Land. The fact is, of all the promises, the land was the most tangibly immediate promise that Abraham was given. He could literally look out over the land that God was promising him. He couldn’t see it all, but he got a picture of it.
I’m sure we also need to look beyond our present circumstances to the presence and reality of God. In Abraham’s life, the reality of God was far greater than his present circumstances. God was all around him! God was literally north, south, east and west.
When life is hard, look beyond your present circumstances to the reality of God and his love. He is all around you. There is no place you can go that God won’t be there. And as you go experience his love!