"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10
Last night Andy and I were having an interesting conversation about letting God be God. We were talking about how when we're talking to God, telling him about our problems or our struggles, that most people also tell God how to fix the problem. Think about this, I think we all do it! Say we have a bill coming up that's due, and we don't have the money to pay for it, so we talk to God about it. We tell Him about this bill, and then we ask for the finances to take care of it, and we ask for extra work to come in, or we ask for someone to send us a check, or we ask for something of ours to sell so that we can use the money from that. We don't take the opportunity to just let God be God! I wonder how things may have been different in the past if we had only let God do something Godly and cool, because, after all, He IS God! He can do whatever He wants. That bill that was due yesterday? He's God! He can cause that bill to be paid in full without money ever changing hands- there are no limits to what God can do.
"But so that we may not offend them, go to the lake and throw out your line. Take the first fish you catch; open its mouth and you will find a four-drachma coin. Take it and give it to them for my tax and yours." Matthew 17:27
If God can send Peter fishing for money to pay his taxes, God can do anything when it comes to your bills and my bills. And this whole idea of letting God be God doesn't just apply to bills and money. I just think that so many times when we're talking to God and asking Him to intervene with something, we spend too much time giving him solutions or ideas, when He may have the best idea ever. So often though, we don't get to see that idea because we're too focused on what our human answers would be.
This past Saturday morning, Andy spent time working on our patio out back. It needed some TLC, and while he did that, I decided to tackle the screen porch adjacent to it. As I adjusted furniture and vacuumed, I was talking to God about the furniture out there. I decided that I really wanted a table out there so that we could eat outside if we felt like it. I thought about our finances and thought about how far down the road having money available for extra things like extra furniture would be, and I just kind of asked God to somehow make a way in the weeks to come for us to be able to afford to get a table for the porch. My human mind was thinking that it's getting to be that time where all the stores are going to be putting patio furniture and the like on clearance, so a deal could be had. But wouldn't you know, God had other plans. (You knew this was coming, right?)
Literally, not even one hour later, we all got into our van to go celebrate our kids swimming accomplishments with some ice cream. We go around the corner, and one of our neighbors has a table sitting at the curb. At a quick glance, it looked like a nice sturdy table, and Andy and I both commented on it, wondering if it was there for a reason, or if the people were getting rid of it. After we got back home some time later, Andy walked right on over and asked about the table. Of course they were getting rid of it, and of course we were welcome to it! And just like that, just a few hours after talking to God about it, I had a dining table in my screen porch. And a perfect table at that. It looks like it came from a cottage, it's made of wood and Formica, and will stand up to the outdoor elements that could be experienced out in the porch. That very night, after I cleaned it off, we enjoyed dinner outside with unexpected company. And then yesterday after church, we had some dear friends over for lunch and could do so outside.
My answer for getting a table was for God to provide money so that we could purchase a table. I wasn't picky as to how He'd provide the funds- whether Andy did some side work, worked overtime, or a mystery check showed up in the mail- I was happy with any of those solutions. It never occurred to me to just ask God for a table. Honest. It never crossed my mind to just ask God to put a table in my screen porch. Now I know better, and next time, I'm going to let God be God. In fact, I already have asked Him for some new dining chairs for inside the house. The ones we have fit around the patio table PERFECTLY, so now I have an empty dining table inside the house. And you know what? I just know that God's going to do that very thing for me, and I can't wait to see it happen.
God is God. It's time that we stop playing God and solving our own problems. Instead, we need to talk to God about them, and ask HIM to solve our problems for us- to show us that He truly is God and can meet our needs in some really cool and incredible ways.