For a long time, my follow of God looked like this:
1) Feel like God may be pulling at my heart
2) Consider it
3) Line up a solution to every possible thing that could go wrong
4) Ensure that every part of the “nudge” is foolproof
I thought I was obedient because I got to the follow, but it took me a lot of steps to get there. If I ask my kids to do something and it takes them five steps to proceed, I do not feel honored. Honestly, I’m annoyed. I’m not saying God was annoyed with me. But in fool proofing His nudge before I proceeded, just in case He didn’t come through or I heard wrong, I was showing a lack of trust in Him. I wasn’t giving Him the glory in the follow that He deserved.
Jesus’ very first miracle is an example of following without the test. At a wedding banquet, they were running out of wine, and the servants ask Mary what to do. She looks to Jesus and says to the servants, “Do whatever He tells you.” Jesus tells the servants to fill barrels with water and then serve it to the head of the party. So they did just that. It doesn’t say that the servants heard what He said, proceeded reluctantly, tested the wine and voted it was good enough to serve, upon agreeing that it would work, they took it to the head of the party with their eyes closed, and pleading with God to grant them mercy, they handed over the supposed wine. No. The servants followed, exactly, and they served the water.
When Teddy my three-year-old hears me say, “slow down” as he runs down an icy sidewalk, he prefers his plan and keeps on running. When he finds himself slipping, he looks to me, and I catch him. I do not want my heart towards my God to be one where I am paving my way and looking up only when things get slick. I want to be caught up in His graces, protected by the shadow of His wings, with the wind at my back because we are moving together.
I want to live my life serving the water. To listen and follow. I am taking myself out of the equation. As I have learned to follow, leaving myself behind, I have seen more of my God than ever before, because I am looking less to myself and more to Him. My pace is a pursuit because I’m not wasting time evaluating if I may or may not have a better plan than my God.
I have found that as I follow without the test, God doesn’t even ask me to risk it all. He has whispered and provided, whispered and provided, and He is building the muscle of my faith. My God loves me. He isn’t asking me to jump from the swing, but it brings Him glory when my heart is postured so that I am asking where we are going rather than telling Him where I am headed.
I want to live trusting God enough to serve the water. Over and over, every day forever.
Will you relentlessly follow without testing or questioning His path? When it may not all seem to be coming together, will you step out anyway? The is the free life, serving the water without tasting it first. This is a follow that I hadn’t known, and now that I have tasted it, I would choose it every time.
This is the life I never knew I always wanted.