The world is full of distractions. We live in an age full of technology where we have instant access to almost anything we want. We are a society where demands for immediate results are expected. It can be easy to lose yourself in the crowd if you want to. We can keep ourselves busy from anything we desire. This age is a procrastinator’s paradise.
Add onto all of that the fact that we can simply be a distraction to ourselves. We can keep ourselves from focusing or wrestling with an issue that needs to be dealt with. As Christians we are really good at this. We distract ourselves the most when it comes time to listening to God.
There are many reasons that keep us from listening to God. I was talking with Karch about this issue and he brought up how our lack of discerning God’s will with what we wish God’s will to be shows how selfish we truly are. It shows how distant we are to God. This really struck a chord with me. I realized I had been avoiding having a true heart to heart with God on some issues because I was afraid I would have trouble discerning God’s will. This would show me how far away I really am from Him.
What do we do then? We hide from God. We avoid the conversation as best we can. We fear what some of the answers may be in the discussion. The more and more we distract ourselves the less we act like who we really are. We put on a mask just to avoid the inevitable for a little bit longer. It is time to get somewhere quiet.
I was on vacation this past week. I was able to get some opportunities to just be still and listen. I will be honest in saying that it hurt. It was painful to realize that I had been avoiding some crucial issues in my personal life. As much as we want answers we never seem to like them once we receive them. Getting real with God is painful.
Reality is painful. We do not want to face the realities in our life. We would rather wish them away, and hope God magically fixes them. That is what we really want isn’t it? We wish for God to wave his magic wand and for all of our troubles to cease. We want to avoid doing anything difficult or messy. We want to avoid inconveniences of change or growth. So we wait and hide until God waves that magic wand.
The wand is not going to wave past you though. Sometimes we need to look up and realize it is time to come to God fully exposed because it is the only way we can see what is in our own heart. Maybe you feel God is leading you on a dangerous adventure and you can only see it ending with a gruesome crash. Maybe you are simply wondering where God is in the midst of your strife.
When my wife and I flew out to North Carolina I looked down at the ground when it was dark. I saw to cars speeding towards an intersection. As I looked down in horror I noticed that neither car was slowing down. They would inevitably meet in the middle of this intersection and proceed to cause a huge pile up with other cars traveling behind them. I witnessed them reach the point where they would meet and supposedly crash, but they both passed safely. What I did not realize from my angle was this was not an intersection at all. One road was a bridge above the other. The cars were never going to crash into each other.
That is how we are sometimes. We look at our life and think that no matter what we do it will lead to a horrible crash, but God sees all the angles. He knows what is really taking place. Sometimes I avoid God because I know I will have trouble trusting Him, and that is painful to come to face with. The time for hiding for me and any of you reading this is over. It’s time to realize we are only seeing life from one angle.
Here is the hard part. I still am not certain what God is doing. I’m not sure what all the answers are yet. However, I’m no longer avoiding the one who has those answers. It is time to draw closer to God so that I can understand those answers. It is time to realize my vision is imperfect so I can boldly drive through that intersection that looks like a death sentence. It’s time to shut up and listen.