Who’s Really Holding Back?
I recently went to a men’s conference and was blessed to have been taught by both Jon Courson and Greg Laurie. I’m still trying to figure out which message ministered to me more, and am not sure if I’ll ever know. [note: The messages can be downloaded HERE.]
While at the event, I spent $20.00 and purchased a book written by Greg Laurie titled, “The Greatest Stories Ever Told – Old Testament Vols. I-III”. I did not have to go too far before God laid something before me that inspired me to expand on those thoughts here. I give Greg Laurie total credit for the inspiration behind this devotional… and he did not even hug me like Jon did!
People have lived and died; civilizations have thrived and then been lost to history because they seek something “more”. What that ‘more’ is, they do not know. That’s why they seek it. This makes perfect sense, in a dog chasing his tail, or an insane man running circles around the inside of a rubber-walled room after having been told to go sit in the corner ~ kind of way. They seek the more based in a complete lack of satisfaction of where they are in life. or better yet, how they feel. OR, that they feel very simply, that in spite of the fact that everything is going quite well in their lives, that there must surely be something more or better.
As a human being, thriving to do something more or better is an admirable quality. Necessity is the mother of invention. Where I came from they called that Yankee Ingenuity. Some would argue that it is not necessity that inspires us to do more or better, but rather laziness. A good friend of mine likes to live his life by ‘tag lines’. One he often uses is ‘if it doesn’t stink, stir it!”, and has earned a suitable reputation for the same. Another tag line he uses is this: “It’s a thin line between hobby and obsession (or mental illness).” The latter line is more apropos for our discussion, and he’s absolutely right.
It is not that we seek to know more or to find what is ‘missing’ in our lives. God has designed us human beings with an innate desire to know Him, in spite of the fact that He seems so ‘mysterious’ to so many. It is quite more the WHY we seek the more or the missing in our lives that will eventually define us all.
I can tell you that there has never been a society in recorded history that has not had religion, or a god. Every culture known to man has worshipped or sought to please a god or a supreme being or a creator, whatever you they may have chosen to call him/it. And for some cultures it drove them to self destruction. The Mayans may be the finest example of this that we know of. Their cities were huge. Their science was advanced, their technology, mathematics and architecture were way beyond their years. And yet they were obsessed with pleasing a god they did not know, and because they did not know him, they could not reach him spiritually. They were dissatisfied. The grumbled against god and eventually themselves.
Why was this? To me it seems simple. They knew there had to be a ‘god’. Someone ultimately powerful had to be the creating force behind the world that they knew. And remember, what they know of it was very small. They know that ‘god’ had to have created the heavens, and the animals. But because they were not feeling a “connection with god”, they felt something that so many other people still feel today. If God is this good, and God is this powerful, and God can do anything He wants, and my life still stinks this bad, than he MUST be holding something back from me.
That mind-set will not only kill you. It has already killed nations.
Don’t take my word for it. Take the word of scripture as proof. God is not holding anything back that would prevent you from running into His loving arms right this very minute. We are told that “No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” No good thing. God is not holding back in any way, the things if righteousness and salvation from you.
The ‘more’ or better that you are looking for is a natural thing. God created us perfect, meaning complete. When sin entered in because Eve was deceived and believed a lie, and Adam decided just simply to go for it, in spite of the fact that he knew better, our intimate relationship with God was broken. Because of that every man, woman and child since have been trying to fill that void in their lives with something. Some choose drugs, alcohol or lust. Others choose religion or faith, but are lost in the incredibly thick jungle of false teachers and religions. And when that peace that surpasses all understanding does not come, they simply give up and curse God. But it is not God’s fault.
The ‘more’ and ‘better’ that we are looking for is a restored relationship with our Creator. He is holding nothing back. Why would He hold back a secret now, after He gave His Son to die in our place? Think about that one for a while you seekers of ‘more’ and ‘better’. Oh, what tangled webs we weave as we pretend to seek God, and loose our souls in the labyrinth of our own excuses and weaknesses.
Shed your human nature that seeks thrills and acceptance, and die to self so that God might live in you. God held nothing back to prevent you from coming to Him. What are you holding on to that’s preventing you from going?