Striving

How often do you hear “You do your part, God will do the rest”?  What do you think of the validity of this phrase?  Is it true for all circumstances at all times?  Have you ever thought about it?  Wait.. hang on.. does it mean that God cannot do it all, He needs you to do it?  Does it imply that God isn’t capable of starting something, that He has to wait for you to do your part for Him to act?

We human beings love to strive.  It helps us feel that we have things “under control”, it helps us feel worthy and important.  So we strive to make things work.  We put a plan in place and we go for it.  I have seen many people make a decision in their minds that they would get married before the end of the year and they would go all out, find a partner and indeed meet their deadlines.  I wonder how such marriages really are behind the scenes.  Yup, they will testify that they did their part and God did the rest.

There are certain situations where we do need to do so – for example students have to ensure they prepare for their exams.  (However, having said that, the hardworking ones need to slave at preparation while the intelligent ones find it sufficient to sit for the exam based on their attentiveness during lectures..).  However, to apply this phrase across the board in every aspect of our lives is nothing but ego or pride talking.  It’s a way to cover up to achieve our own set goals and plans.

Today I read someone’s status on FB, encouraging believers to quit striving, to quit trying to make things come to pass and to simply let God. In my writings and when I speak, I use the analogy of a leaf being carried along by the wind to describe this scenario.  The leaf doesn’t do anything but goes in the direction of the wind, wherever it pleases to blow.  This was of course based from Jesus telling Nicodemus about being born again, and what it means to be born of the Spirit. 

However, the lady Lana Vawser whose status I’m referring to, used the analogy of floating on one’s back on a rive, allowing the water to take you to drive the point home of a surrendered person in God’s hands… Whichever direction the water flows is the direction the person takes.. 

Take time to reflect on your life… are you someone who happily quotes “You do your part, God will do the rest” or are you someone who can float on the back on a flowing stream or be like the leaf that is carried along by the wind?  Are you quoting the phrase to cover up for a lack of faith?  In fact it actually takes FAITH to be still and to trust God to divinely intervene to fulfill HIS promises.  Is He not capable of doing that?  Of course He is!  

And for those of you who believe in “You do your part, God will do the rest” as apt for any situation, well then do you not believe the incidents recorded in the Bible?  Did God not provide food for the Israelites while they were wandering in the wilderness?  Did anyone drop dead because of malnutrition or starvation?  They didn’t fend for themselves did they?  Then what about Elijah being fed by the raven?  What about the widow’s oil multiplying into all the vessels she could find?  What about the water being turned into wine?  What part did the people have to play in this – other than simply waiting upon God and in His right time doing what He told them to do?  The stories weren’t of self sufficiency or ego but about dependency on God.

In our striving we can get so carried away and plan stuff only to miss out on the grand blessings and plan that God has in store for us.  Are you willing for the birthing of whatever God has planned for you to take place?  Then don’t try to give birth to what is of the flesh… 

Faith surrenders to the Spirit;

the flesh strives to our own plans..

We need to be born of the Spirit… and remember that we are here for His Glory 🙂

 

 

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