Friday, July 18, 2008

Genesis 40 - It's OK to not drown.

I have friends that sometimes say, "I'll just wait and see what God does in this situation." I don't think that's inherently wrong. I think there are lots of times when God wants us to sit still. Where He wants to have us waiting for His rescue. But I also think it's easy to think that's the only way He works. I think it can be tempting to hide in the fact that He is going to do it and all we need to do is wait.

But Joseph didn't wait.

Have you ever noticed that? He campaigned for his exit by telling the baker and the cup bearer: But when all goes well with you, remember me and show me kindness; mention me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison. For I was forcibly carried off from the land of the Hebrews, and even here I have done nothing to deserve being put in a dungeon."

Joseph made plans. He was proactive with his actions. He knew God would not strike him dead in the dungeon for trying to get out. He was not punished for making his case to baker and the cup bearer. It didn't work out initially, but I don't think that is the point.

I think the point is that if you're drowning, God is not going to criticize you for raising your own head above the water. Just as it is not a matter of my lack of trust in God for me to put up a gate at the top of the stairs to prevent my children from falling down. Could God prevent them from falling without the gate? Certainly. Could He heal them if they did? Without a doubt. Is He angry that I put up the gate. I don't think so.


Anonymous said...

My pastor is big on promoting waiting on God to act in our trials, for us not to leave God because we think He's inactive, inattentive, uninterested. While we "wait and see what God does", it seems to take us off the hook to do ANYTHING, prayer, trust.

Leon said...

Very interesting.

I'm wondering, does this show a lack of trust in God? (because oughtn't we trust Him in all things?)

Cindy said...

I like to call this the "gospel of common sense". God gives us a brain and most of us a sound mind. I believe He expects us to use them!

Oslerfamily said...

It's hard to know when to wait and when to move. Sometimes I feel God is calling me to do something, and to do it NOW. His voice and power are so strong it about knocked me into the chair in front of me at church. (I tell people if I wear a football helmet to church it's just God talking to me.....Now, to find one that matches my shoes)
Recently I heard of a team going on a mission trip and I thought "Who would be so crazy as to go to that country?" Then I had this powerful internal voice say "MOVE WHEN I TELL YOU TO MOVE!" I looked at my husband, eyes wide open. I said "I think God just yelled at me!" Ergo we head for our mission trip in October. God has provided the support and finances. I just gotta move and now because I really feel he told me to do it. He's never been clearer to me. I like when he yells at me.

amazed by grace said...

I remember agonizing once about the transition from WAIT to GO. I had been in the waiting stage for so long, that I was terrified of taking a step because I didn't want to go the wrong direction. As though God was not capable of directing me once I started walking? He showed me that, like a ship on water, it's much easier to steer and navigate when it's moving, rather than standing still. Stepping out in faith means taking those steps--it is an action. Trusting means knowing God will direct us as we go. He may change the direction we are going, but we gotta be moving to even change paths.

There are some things I am still waiting on God for, but I still look for doors of opportunity to step into, so that God can continue to direct me.

Anonymous said...

About a year ago, my pastor preached a sermon about God being big enough to stop us if we are going the wrong direction. In other words, instead of sitting around worrying if something is God's will, pray about it, do something, and God tell you if it's not correct. (This is all assuming you are listening to His voice, of course.)

Joe said...

"Wait on God"

You know what that means to me?

That at the right moment and at the right time...

He says, "Say this..."

He says, "Do this..."

He says, "Ask them about this..."

He says, "Stay with her, watch Me bless her."

He says, "I have you. Have no fear."

We shouldn't wait on the Lord for Him to take care of all the background details so that we might move forward. Instead, we keeping moving forward, one foot in front of the other, and letting God speak to us when He wants some thing done for His glory.

That moving forward is not without Him. It is only because of Him.