“I was in my front yard yesterday digging some weeds out of the flower bed,” Stan commented one morning, “and I heard my neighbor say something to his son that brought back a bunch of memories.”
“What was that all about?” I asked.
“Well,” Stan replied, “my neighbor was washing windows and it seems he wanted his son to help, but the son wasn’t real interested. At one point, my neighbored said to the boy, ‘Don’t just stand there, do something!’”
“And what did that remind you about?” I asked.
“Growing up on the farm,” Stan replied, “there was always a lot of work to be done.”
“Did your dad have to boss you around much?”
“No,” he replied, “I was pretty much a self-starter. I knew what had to be done and I did it without a lot of prodding. However, it was not the same with my younger brother. I often heard my dad say something to him similar to what my neighbor said to his son.”
“Don’t just stand there, do something?”
“That’s it,” Stan replied. “And it’s interesting to me that after I began a more serious faith walk, I heard God say the exact opposite.”
“The exact opposite? In what way?”
“Tending to be a self-starter,” Stan replied, “there were lots of times when I jumped ahead of God and did what I wanted to do, thinking that I knew exactly what God wanted me to do for Him.”
“However,” he added, “there came a day when I clearly heard God say, ‘Don’t just do something, stand there’.”
“Don’t just do something, stand there,” I repeated. “How did you interpret that?”
“God made it clear to me,” Stan replied, “that too much of what I thought I was doing for Him was really only what I thought I should be doing, rather than seeking His will and His direction in being a disciple.”
“Being a disciple?” I responded. “What’s that have to do with it?”
“Everything,” Stan said. “Rather than denying self, I was exalting self. And rather than taking up what God had for me to take up, I was taking up what I thought best. Finally, I was seeking to lead God, asking Him to follow me, rather than following Him.”
“So,” I replied, “when you heard God telling you that you were to stand there, what did that mean to you?”
“Wait,” was Stan’s one-word answer. “Wait until God had made it real clear what He wanted me to be doing for Him.”
“How long?” I asked.
“He didn’t say,” Stan replied. “He just said that as long as I was seeking His will, I would know when it was time.”
“So you would just sit doing nothing while you waited?” I asked.
“Seeking God’s will is not doing nothing,” Stan replied. “It is drawing ever closer to Him in a deepening relationship. It is pursuing the eternal life of knowing Him.”
Bible verses to consider:
Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10.
If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. Luke 9:23.
And this is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent. John 17:3.
So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Philippians 2:12-13.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, that you have work for me to do on this side of eternity to work out the salvation of life eternally with you that you have worked in through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Thank you that you provide direction as to what you have for me to be and to do. I confess that too often I run ahead of you, doing what I want to do apart from you. Please forgive me. And please help me in following every step of your lead so that I wait until you make your will known to me. Please help me to know and to follow you in obedience. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: In order to have salvation to work out, there has to be salvation worked in. Do you have that salvation? If no, why? It’s available to be accepted by faith. Once a person is saved, it’s easy to try to run ahead of God. Do you agree with that? Why or why not? Is running ahead of God, rather than waiting for Him, something you tend to do? If so, do you sense you need to sit before God waiting on Him to make clear what He has for you? If you do sense that, how is it going to happen? Is it what you want? Is it what God wants?