In conversation with some friends today, one told a story about a man in a flood sitting on his roof. Someone in a boat came along and offered him a ride but he said “No thanks, I’m waiting for God to rescue me.” Two more boats came by and were met with the same answer. Eventually the man drowned and went to heaven where he asked God why he was allowed to die when he had such faith that God would rescue him. God’s answer was “I sent you three boats.”
I have to admit that I have had times in my life where I’ve been so convinced that God was going to reach down and scoop me up that I’ve let the boats go by. But God, in general, uses the boats. He uses the people in our lives and in our paths. He speaks to us, not in a thundering voice or mysterious signs, but in his word and through the counsel of godly people.
Just like the people in Jesus’ day, we tend to ask for signs. “God, show me if you want me to take this job.” “Tell me what you want me to do with my life.” But sometimes, if we have a pretty strong leaning in one direction, we set ourselves up to need a really BIG sign to go the other way. “God, if you really want me to go to the 6 a.m. Bible study, let there be no sermon in church this morning.”
The fact is, God isn’t nearly so worried about the day-to-day decisions like what car I buy, job I take, or diet I’m on as he is about the day-to-day condition of my heart and my relationship with him. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about these things. He cares about everything – but mostly in relation to how they affect the person I am. Are these things making me kinder, gentler, more patient, more giving – more like Jesus? Or are they making me more selfish, more quick tempered, more about what I want and deserve?
I need to ask God what his will is and then I need to remember to keep my eyes and heart open more. Boats are all around me. It’s my choice to climb in.
If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do. James 1:5-8