Where there is no vision, the people perish…
Proverbs 29:18 KJV
Right now, one of the main ‘to-do’ items on my list is editing and reformatting the digital version of Martha’s book, Chariot of Fire. This is no small task, and it’s been quite the spiritual rollercoaster. Sometimes I have the grace to be focused and productive, and sometimes I don’t. Now, I know that this is a responsibility that the Spirit has given me, so I know that there’s always grace for it. Therefore, the problem is with me. And I have struggled mightily to figure out what that problem is.
Yesterday I had a break-through. I’ve been so fixated on the completion of this assignment that I’ve made that the focus, my sole purpose. I took the responsibility and made a law of it. And because I made it a law, every interruption or setback or glitch that arose has been supremely frustrating. I’ve resented it enormously and had a hard time getting back into the flow of the work. I can see so clearly that I made this assignment more important than even the flow of the Spirit. He didn’t matter as much as being able to complete the work He gave me. How could I possibly access grace when I kept shutting the door on the Source?
Every time I focused on the task at hand to the exclusion of the Lord, I lost the means to do the task. It is the Life of Christ that is capable of performing the responsibilities He assigns me. In His Life is all the grace and wisdom and flexibility that I need. Without it, I’m a mess. Demonstrably so! The Life of Christ rolls with the interruptions and glitches and setbacks. They are nothing to get stuck on or worry about or rage against. I’ve had a few days of beautiful, flowing work that was a joy to be a part of and a worshipful experience to boot. I watched Jesus in me move seamlessly from one thing to another, unhurried and unworried. It was absolutely beautiful, and the only thing keeping me from that miraculous flow is me.
There isn’t a single thing in my life with the Lord that happens in a vacuum. Everything works together and on many levels. Nothing that I do exists for its own sake alone. So when I treat it like it does – which is precisely what happens when I make a law of it – then it is going to be a Sisyphean task from start to finish.
Meeting God in My Purpose
As Carole’s post yesterday so beautifully illustrated, the wretched consequences for my trying to do anything apart from Him are His deep and abiding love for me. God doesn’t give me a responsibility because He wants to see what I’m made of or because He wants to test my abilities. He wants to reveal Himself to me in ever deeper clarity. He wants me to experience the ultimate companionship in the seemingly inconsequential daily ‘to-do’ list. The ‘to-do’ list is the means, not the end. I am in awe of what He does with this frail, earthen vessel when I stop closing the door on Him. He is magnificent!
“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” This is observably true, more so today than ever before perhaps. But God’s vision, His purpose, was never intended to be separated from His Person—not as a law or as a doctrine and certainly not as an idol. That way leads only to disaster.