How can we live in God’s will, and know it? The second thing that that we can do is to “long for what God has promised”. I came to a point in my life where I longed to get out of my addiction. I longed for peace in my life, a family & children. In many ways, it may not seem a hard thing to do, longing for God’s promises in our life. God promises that “rest”, but we need to trust in Him daily.
How does this look in real life? I “trusted”, I gave it all up. I gave up trying to run my life and I allowed Jesus to step in. I looked to Him for refuge from the struggle. I looked to Him for answers and you must know, it was a journey–it took time. But I had Him with me every step of the way.
As Christians we live our lives expectantly, in “hope”, awaiting the fulfillment of God’s promises. “Hope” and “trust” are future-tense verbs. In these words, As we apply “hope” and “trust” to our relationship with God we anticipate the promises of God. As followers of Christ the past is forgiven and the “present” is empowered by Jesus’ promise of the kingdom of God/the kingdom of Heaven. As we long for what God has promised we find “hope”, and as we participate in this journey we learn to trust God. Let’s look again at what the writer of the book of Hebrews was sharing with us:
Hebrews 3:12-15 (TNIV)
12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold firmly till the end our original conviction. 15 As has just been said: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.”
Yes–as we learn from the past and as we “LONG” for what God has promised–we start to come into God’s “rest’.
The third thing that that we can do is to “live in the present”. Ours is a faith of the present tense, a “here-and-now” faith in God who loves us. It’s about conviction and conduct, believing and behaving in response to God’s call. To obtain the blessings of God two things are necessary.
They are necessary not because these are God’s rules, but because God created us and knows how we tick. He knows how we work and He simply is sharing what He knows about us.
These two things are “TRUST” and “OBEDIENCE”. Now that word “OBEDIENCE” always seems to bring a hard edge. Let me put it in perspective. God knows us, He knows WHO we are and He knows HOW we are. If a doctor tells us, “I can cure you if you obey all of my instructions”, we understand that, don’t we? Or if a trainer tells an athlete, “I can make you a champion if you train like I say and don’t deviate from the discipline I lay down”…we understand that, don’t we? Or if a teacher says, “I can make you a scholar if you follow this curriculum exactly”, we understand that, don’t we?
Well, Jesus is saying, “I can bring you rest and peace in life if you trust in Me, if you listen to what I have told you in the Scriptures and apply these things to your life”, we should understand that.
I can wrap my mind around that. I would note that all the examples above, it is a PROCESS, it is a “day-to-day” OBEDIENCE, it is a “day-to-day” WALK and learning to TRUST to get to that point we want to be at. Success depends on TRUST and OBEDIENCE.
May you daily seek God’s rest.