August 13, 2012
Whether or not we realize it, we are all looking for something. These “desires” come in different shapes and sizes, but there are common themes for all of our pursuits. I was looking for identity, connection, and attention, needing to be wanted for who I was. As an adult, I pursued purpose, meaning, my unique calling, security for myself and my family, and being loved and accepted. Our Creator builds these yearnings and desires into us. So what are you looking for today?
Actually, an even more important question is, “Where are you looking?” Because you will only find what you are truly looking for by looking to, at, and with God. God’s message, sent through His prophet Isaiah, is so simple yet so profound: “Look to me and be saved.” This obviously applies to our eternal needs … but it also applies to every other desire, need, suffering, and wayward path from which we need to be saved.
As we grow up, we are pushed to learn how to take care of ourselves, learning to hold our bottles, crawling to grab shiny toys, feeding ourselves, doing our homework, making friends, taking the SAT’s, getting a license, going off to college or work. So many milestones mark the journey of becoming an independent, functioning adult.
The trap or downside of this developmental model is developing a habit of putting our confidence in ourselves, and sometimes in others’ opinions of how we are doing, rather than getting our confidence from GOD. Confidence is the attitude, hope, and knowledge that we are able to accomplish or persevere in a situation. Looking to God, His character, His instruction, and His promises are what give us confidence to pursue the right things … to make the Godly decisions in difficult circumstances.
When your confidence comes from your own self, you are trusting in a very limited and shallow bucket. But when your confidence comes from God, you can draw from an infinite reservoir that is more powerful than you could ever conjure up. You have minimal power to overcome your fleshly needs, desires, distortions, and hurts or pains. That’s when patterns of struggle, dysfunction, even addiction are born and fed.
Today, as you make decisions, especially when you make a mistake, ask yourself, “From where am I drawing the confidence, instruction, or power to make that decision or soothe my pain? Is my confidence coming from my meager skills, insights, intellect, attributes, or power? Or from God’s immenseness?” Confidence that is centered in Him and generated from Him will save you in today’s battles and discomforts. The source of your confidence is your decision, so choose well.
Dear Father God, You are indeed an awesome God. Who but You could be all places at all times? It amazes me to think that One as great as You actually cares about the many details of my life … but You really do. When I think about these glorious truths … and when I turn to you, I feel safe knowing I will never be alone again. Lord, Help me to look at You, to keep You before me always, and to get my confidence from my ultimate bodyguard. Otherwise, I fall back into my default mode, getting my confidence from myself, straining constantly because all outcomes seem totally up to me, resting on my skills and what I can muster. It seems to work occasionally for the little things, but for the big things in life, I am doomed without You. All these I ask in the confidence of Christ’s name; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
“Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other.” Isaiah 45:22
But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:15-16
which he will display at the proper time–he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen. As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. 1 Timothy 6:15-17