Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The All Sufficiency of God

Luke 18:17 (The Message)

"Mark this: Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in."

The all-sufficiency of God ought to be as complete to the child of God as the all-sufficiency of a good mother is to the child of that mother. We all know the utter rest of the little child in the mother's presence and the mother's love. That its mother is there is enough to make all fears and all troubles disappear. It does not need the mother to make any promises; she herself, just as she is, without promises and without explanations, is all that the child needs. (anonymous)

For a child it is almost effortless. There is a rightness, an almost instinctual impulse to trust the goodness of a mother. And with that trust comes perfect peace.

I yearn for that peace and Luke 18:17 tells me that such yearning is biblical, and evidence that what I yearn for is pleasing to God. The problem is, I am an adult and such implicit trust does not come easy to my sin-encrusted and my life-experienced heart. Nevertheless, the path of peace is the same. I must learn to trust the living God with my concerns. Pray for me as I pray for you, that our trust in the goodness of God will become more and more like the child nestled in his mother's arms confident that all will be well.

"You are an all sufficient remedy for every care of my heart. Help me to trust in that this day and all the days you give me on this earth. Amen"


Anonymous said...

I quote you: "And with trust comes perfect peace." This is perhaps better stated: With COMPLETE trust comes perfect peace! That is, afterall, God's promise to us in Isaiah 26:3. "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee" (KJV). What a phenomenal promise to us! Can there be any fear in "perfect peace"? How about doubt? Or worry? Or fear? Or anxiety? Or stress of any kind? These petty emotional ripples are impossible in "perfect peace". And this is God's promise to us! IF WE will keep OUR MINDS STAYED on HIM, which is to say that WE GIVE HIM our COMPLETE, UNQUESTIONED and ABSOLUTE (CHILDLIKE) TRUST, then HE WILL, in exchange, keep us in PERFECT PEACE. This is nothing less than a mathematical equation of a promise! PERFECT TRUST = PERFECT PEACE! Jesus tells us the same thing in Matthew chapter 6 when He says that the cure for care is trust in God ("If God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith (trust)?" v. 30, KJV). Moreover, Christ supplies the WHY we should be able to trust in God: ("For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things." v. 32, KJV). And genuinely knowing who God is, deeply realizing that He is the Almighty, Absolute Ruler of the Universe, The All-knowing, Ever-present and All-present force in every moment, the Alpha and the Omega, my Precious Soverign and Benovelent Master WHO LOVES EVEN ME, how can I resist trusting Him? I don't want God, in the language of popular bumper stickers, to be my "co-pilot". I WANT HIM TO BE MY PILOT! And I will be a passenger, humbly and gratefully seated somewhere in coach, resting (perhaps even sleeping!) and at peace that God is at the helm and in control! I don't need to worry, or fear or doubt or project any negative outcome into an imaginary future. Those cares and worries are fictions, literally imagined, because God is Soverign, in control and I know that "He careth for me!" (1 Peter 5:7 KJV). Given the choice of trusting in myself, a frail, pathetic and often confused little mortal being and trusting in my Almighty, Omnipresent, Omniscient Heavenly Father, why would I reasonably or rationally choose to trust in myself? What confidence can I really have in myself and what confidence is God not deserving of? So I must ask myself, in moments when I feel fear, doubt and emotional or mental stress, because I am still in training, because I am still a work in progress, "Why have I, at this moment, stopped trusting the Living God?" For if I am not, in that moment, at perfect peace, then Isaiah 26:3 tells me unequivocably that I have (at least temporarily) abandoned my trust in Him, and that I am wrestling with Him for control. And I've got a pretty strong hunch and a reasonable suspicion that any "hostile takeover" on my part isn't going to work out well (for me)!

In an arrogant moment I may think that it's hard to trust in God, that it's hard to yield the control to Him. But who am I kidding? What's really hard is trying to keep ahold of the controls. What's really hard is trying to override God. Struggling with God is hard. Letting go (of my will), when I deeply know who God is and Who I'm relinquishing my desires to, is easy! Who could know better than God? Who is more trustworthy? Who is more able? Who is more sufficient? Who can I trust but Him without question or hesitation? ("If God be for us, who can be against us?" Rom. 8:31 KJV).

Anonymous said...

One other thought: I can see how my abilty to understand God's All-sufficiency, and so trust in Him fully, can be undermined by my arrogant, conceited, ego-driven delusions of my own self-sufficiency and a greatly exaggerated apprasial of my own self-worth. In short, pride mis-calibrate's the scales! Yet when I rightly (Biblically) reckon my self worth I see that, apart from God, I am nothing. Apart from God, I am worthless. And when I realize my nothingness and my worthlessness God is all compelling! When I realize just how insignificant I am the All-mightiness and All-sufficiency of God becomes irresistable! Apart from God I am nothing. Four and a half dollars of basic elements and minerals! But in Him I have purpose, hope and Life! In the light of my nothingness, God's All-sufficiency demands my complete and absolute surrender to Him! When I realize just how empty I am of myself, I have an unquenchable hunger for God! When I see just how limited and troubled my own understanding is, I am irresistably drawn to the God who's peace surpasses all understanding (Phil. 4:7)! When I realize my innate worthlessness I am reflexively grateful for the expression of God's mercy, given as grace and salvation through His Son!

ChosenRebel said...