The current season of life is coming to a close for my wife and I, and a new one is slowly coming to be. It’s a strange place to be in; I’m sure in hindsight I’ll find more appreciation for it than I do now. For now it’s bittersweet. It’s tough to say goodbye, but exciting to think of where God will lead us. This is a growing season. Not a season that one might want, but one that everyone needs from time to time. It’s a season that reminds us that we cannot do this alone.
I look at other people who are following Jesus and it seems to come so naturally. When I look at my own life things don’t seem to come as naturally. I struggle and doubt; I consistently find myself doing the opposite of what God has called me to do. I suspect that even the people that seem to have it together secretly struggle. I presume I’m not alone in this. It seems like human nature to want to attempt life on our own. Yet one doesn’t have to try for very long to see that attempting this rarely works.
Man was never intended to do life apart from God. We are meant to do life in partnership with God.
In my head I know this to be true, however I struggle to actually live like that. Knowing this and practicing this are two different things. As I move into this next stage in my life I know that I need God in my life like never before. I cannot do what God has called me to apart from Him. I desperately want to succeed in this stage of my life and lead a life that honors and glorifies Him.
The thing about leading a life like that is that it really has little to nothing to do with us and who we are. But it has everything to do with who God is and what He has done.
We often think more highly of ourselves than we ought to. We think that we can do life on our own, but can we really do that? The truth is most of us try and if we are honest it isn’t working out too well for us. Look at the world around us, we are failing. We are failing because we are trying to do life on our own power and it’s not working.
Sure we might be able to attain some “worldly” success. But if we want to live the life God is calling us to we don’t have a chance of doing this on our own. We NEED God. God has gone to crazy lengths to get us back to Him so that we can do life with Him by our side. It is His desire to go through life with us and help us.
God doesn’t call us to a life that we are capable of living. He calls us to a life that we are only capable of living with Him.
I realize that more than ever now. The path my wife and I are on is not one we can accomplish on our own. We need God. More than that, if God doesn’t show up we are sunk. We are totally in His hands. At first that seems a little scary. But whose better hands to be in than the creator of the universe.
We should find comfort that our life rests not in our own clumsy hands but in God’s loving and secure hands.
One of my favorites bands is Emery and in their third release “I Am Only a Man” speaks to this. Throughout the album Toby writes about how he tried for so long to do life on his own, but ultimately failed. He came to the realization that he was only a man and man’s greatest need is God. On the 6th track this thought comes into full light with these lyrics:
You people could say that I’m the bad guy
Because I was weak
I was weak once or twice
Well let me tell you
I am standing in the need
I am staying in the need
Because I can’t control this person behind my hands
That phrase “standing in the need” is a shortened Baptist saying. What it means is that we need God and we can “stand” in that need and God will provide. In all of our lives we are simply not good enough, there is a need in all of our lives. God can provide for that need and lead us through life. We need to stand in that need.
I know in my life I’m not good enough. But I also know that the God I serve is more than good enough. I’m going to be standing in the need, and there is no place I would rather be.