Have you ever had a feeling of, “Is that it?” after waiting for sometime for a breakthrough especially where it concerns provision?
Here you are and you’ve not paid your rent and it’s due amongst other accumulating bills at home and yet you are not sure where the money will come from. Then somehow some investments you’d made somewhere and forgotten matures and you now have enough to pay for your immediate needs.
When you were in that place of anxiety, you longed for the breakthrough and imagined how good it will be when you are able to sleep without wondering what story to give to your landlord when he comes calling the following morning., but now that these monies have come it is an anticlimax as you don’t feel as excited or relieved as you thought you would.
This was the subject of our discussion recently with some friends. We were together realizing the inadequacy of the things of this life to satisfy the deepest longings of the human heart.
This not only plays out in provision, but also the same with “working for God”. I remember some days gone when I was so given to serving in a christian ministry I was a part of – we’d have programs/events for outreach where I’d stretch myself in sacrifice to the limit both in time and financial resources. There was always an expectation in me that as I work so sacrificially for God, He’d be happy with me and reward me abundantly.
This however would always be disappointed as my physical situation will remain if not worsen after the event. If I had taken family finances or borrowed to support the program, I’d be left figuring out on my own how to cover the holes created by my ‘sacrifice’.
As I gradually progress towards reaching my end in 1. pursuit of breakthroughs and 2. trying to please God with my sacrifices of service, I appreciate more that the two are two sides of the same coin.
The illustration of how these two pursuits do not lead to satisfaction and fulfillment is very well done in the story of a Father and his two sons in (Luke 15:11-32):
11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.….
28 “The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. …..
On the one hand, the younger son figured that if only he’d get all that is due to him from his father, he’d be sorted for the rest of his life; while on the other hand the older son thought that if he served in his father’s estate, then his father would be pleased with him and reward him with inheritance.
Fortunately, they were both wrong. I say ‘fortunately’ because that is the good news for us; that we do not have to seek satisfaction from His gifts or to satisfy Him by our works.
He is satisfied by our son-ship(notice how the father ignores the younger son’s unworthiness assertions). From that flows our provision and service. He’s primarily interested with our reconciliation with Him through His Son and the relationship that flows out of that reconciliation. I find it interesting that Jesus in giving that parable did not find it necessary to tell what happened to the second son after the homecoming party. I think it speaks a lot on what is important, ‘being found in Him’:
But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her. (Luke 10:42)
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well (Matt 6:33)…..
32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.…
All you and I will ever need both in this life and in eternity is found in Christ for in Him is the fullness of God and in Him we exist and have our being, in Him we have all we need for life and godliness. What a Christ!!