If you have an iphone as I do, you have a choice of a wide variety of Apps that dominate your screen. At a simple touch they bring to life a world of multi-media access and can provide instant entertainment and enlightenment. I have AJC, ESPN, Hawks, Braves, Falcons, Carfax, many games for Logan and even instant banking information. And, I have an App for a program titled V-Auto to which I can access the latest activity info on the dealerships I serve, plus get a wide variety of auction data. This is the one I use the most frequently.
But, as if God had orchestrated it, the App for the Bible is just below the V-Auto App, and I frequently touch it mistakenly while trying to get that other info. I always let it play itself out, never rushing away because this may be the hand of God teaching me something I need to hear, and from time to time something really hits me from their “verse of the day”. Today it was Isaiah 48:17-19, and it reminded me of how many detours my life took before I understood how it is supposed to work.
What this scripture says in effect is that the majority of our problems come from trying to be self-sufficient , leaving the will of God out of our decision making . What results may be temporary success, but is usually followed by chaos or roadblocks created by our lack of Godly direction. What makes it worse is that if we had been consulting the master for our plans, he would have blessed the outcome and “our peace would have been like a river”.
So often, people ask me how they know if it is God speaking to them? My response is usually how often are you speaking with him, reading about him and walking in his direction? You can pretty much tell in your daily life what impact God is having on it. If he is giving you daily opportunities to serve him, if amazing things are happening, then that is a great sign he is using you and you will prosper and God will “teach you what is best for you” through his Holy Spirit. If you also experience some unusual turbulence that may be the other side trying to steal your blessing. If we know are doing the will of God, we know this is only a temporary setback.
On the other hand, if “Independence Day” for us is asking God to bless OUR plans, direct us in OUR success, lead us in OUR path, then we will be sadly let down by the results. I know how easy this is even for veteran Christians, and the difference is simply listening for his will, not ours. If we are in daily contact with him, he will “direct us in the way we should go” and we will instinctively know his voice.
For me, Independence Day is a celebration of our country’s freedom, but also a time to reflect that I became truly free when I surrendered my will to my “redeemer, the holy one of Israel”. Thus, I can shout those words, and I hope you will as well……free at last, thank God almighty, we are free at last!
And for generations to come, our descendants will call on the name of the Lord because he has broken the chains of addiction, oppression and sin, and given us Independence from our adversary. My we think of him always, especially this day and claim that he is truly “the Lord, our God”.
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.