Sunday, May 1, 2011

Did He tell you?

We pause. 
Sit on it for a while.
Try on the consequences.
Weigh our decisions.
Then, we make a knowing choice between right or wrong. Light or darkness. Death or life. 
We choose it. 
Nothing is ever thrust upon us. 
We choose it.
Every day we make the decision through the way we live to get closer to God or move further from Him.
Which way are your decisions leading you today?

There is often a gap between what we know we should do and the choices we actually make. I want to make a radical difference in God's kingdom, but I've never known anyone to do anything extraordinary by sitting in front of the television set for hours on end.  Some nights television is a choice I make instead of doing something more meaningful for the Lord.  Isn't that sad?  A few months ago, I cut several programs out of my line-up because God showed me that they were harming my relationship with Him.  There were a few I just didn't want to give up. However, I would rather fulfill my God-given purpose, than watch someone else's bad drama play out on the tube.  I have been in a war deep inside over the shows I kept on my list as "viewable."  I paused.  Sat on it for a while. But, I kept watching the programs.  I heard God say that they had to go, but I told myself that I hadn't officially decided.  But, hadn't I?  Sometimes we actively choose to do something we know we shouldn't.  Other times, by fence-riding, we have CHOSEN!  Make sense?

I know someone that has been trying to decide if church is for him for twenty years now.  He says to me, "I just don't know if I am going or not."  Yet, don't his actions show his decision?  Sometimes we think we haven't decided, when we actually decided the very first time we said no.

I have picked a side.
You have picked a side.
Despite our denial at times,
we all have chosen Heaven or Hell.

Spiritually, this pause in obedience can be detrimental to our growth in Christ, our ministries, and the quality of our relationship with the Lord.  This pause might just be the difference between you spending eternity in heaven or hell.

When I was six years old, I told my mom that "God was bugging me."  See, I had heard the truth of the gospel of salvation preached at church.  I also heard the preacher say that I had a personal decision to make and my eternity hinged on this decision.  The price had already been paid, blood spilled, and a tomb became empty all on my behalf.  I heard the truth of 1 John 4:8 - the very first scripture I ever learned- come true in the detailed story of the gospel.  God is love.  And that love was the very reason that I had a decision to make that day.

But, I was painfully shy as a child. And so I prayed at my seat for Jesus to come into my heart.  Praying at my seat was easy.  It didn't require me to stretch or be embarrassed in any way.  But, something felt off even after my prayer.  Why did I not feel right?  I didn't feel right because obedience wasn't fulfilled in my heart.  See, God's word said to confess publicly this decision and I had hit the proverbial easy button.  I wanted to walk that aisle, but for three weeks I just re-asked Jesus into my heart in my seat.  I was too embarrassed to move. I paused.  I could have remained in that pause for years and I would have been saved eternally, but living separated because of my sin.  Because deep down in my heart, I knew the way in which God was calling me to obedience on that day.  I needed to walk the aisle and pray with the preacher.  

See, God is a loving God. And it is because of that very attribute that He doesn't overwhelm us with do's and don'ts.  But, he works on us often, one step at a time. Some of us live in the pause for way too long. We waste precious years that could be spent in peace. We throw ourselves in turmoil like Jonah did. Jonah ran from God's command to go to Ninevah and he ended up getting swallowed up by a large fish.  Do you feel like that today?  A few weeks ago, our preacher said "Do what God told you to do last."  I think that is a good place to start.

What did God tell you to do last?  

Did He tell you to be obedient through baptism? Did He tell you to attend church and receive that blessing of fellowship? Did He tell you to memorize scripture? Did He tell you to write out stories of deliverance?  Did He tell you to come lay your burden at His feet?  Did He tell you to believe in the Lord Jesus so that you might be saved.?

It only took me one more week to step out into the aisle and be obedient. Yet, I could have been miserable for years because of my disobedience. There will always be some good reason to hold you back from obedience, it's how our enemy works. He will always be there to show us the reason not to do what we know in our heart we should.

What did God tell you to do last?


lisasmith said...

love this... I've lived in the pause way too long in many ways. Do you ever feel that now that you're ready to move, you've forgotten what you were avoiding in the first place?


Jenny Roan Forgey said...

Lisa visited my blog today and suggested that we connect. I've recently gone gluten-free at home for health reasons. More specifically, I'm moving toward "clean eating" (eating whole, unprocessed foods as close to the source as possible). Would love to learn from eachother!

Also, loved your post - thank you for sharing. Hope to be back soon! Jenny at

Jessica Kirkland said...

Well, usually if I'm pausing it's because I really know what I am to do...but my flesh just doesn't want to let it go! But, yes, some things can become such a habit that they become your normal.

Thanks for reading girls! Jenn- I left you a comment on your site.

Angela Mackey said...

Jessica, God is calling me to be more structured in the time He has given me. I rebel against structure because what if I can't or what if I get too rigid? UGH!!!!!!!!! Praying that He continues to show me how to structure my time so I can be obedient in all He has called me to do. Love this post!