Lean With It

11 06 2010

“Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” – Proverbs 3:4 & 5

Have you ever played that game where you had to just lean back or fall back and trust that your friend was there behind you to catch you?  Well that is the same thing God wants us to do! To trust Him enough to fall back and know He is there and therefore in all things lean with it.  To lean with it when you see the swing of a punch coming at you and become like Muhammad Ali and have the confidence that if you lean with it, the swing or jab of the enemy will not hit you.  It will not hit you as you lean and trust that God has your back.  With that in mind, the above bible verse is one of my all time favorite bible verses because it reminds me that God always has my back and all I have to do is lean on Him.  It reminds me that if I can get out of my own way and allow faith to be my guide, I can climb ANY mountain.   It truly reminds me to trust that God IS in control and although sometimes I may not understand or even know where I am going, I can lean on God who does know.   I have seen this in action, if I can  lean with it all things really do work themselves out in due time.  It reminds me that faith is not a seeing act, it is a believing act.  For faith really is…

“… the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1

Think about that for a moment.  What is substance?  According to Webster’s dictionary substance is physical material from which something is made.  What that means to me is that substance is like the seed that is planted when we hope for something.  It is that seed that we water when we have enough faith that it will grow andthusthe thing we are hoping for is becomes real.  The word substance is also defined as assurance by the American Standard Version of the bible.  The word literally means a standing under, support (W.E. Vine, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, vol. 1, p. 85). Faith, in relation to hope, IS assurance which actually supports our hope in the thing we are having faith for. Thus, one’s hope is only as secure as her faith is strong.   Now moving to  the next major word in this bible verse, what is evidence?  Webster’s dictionary says it is an outward sign or one who bears witness.  The term evidence is also defined as conviction by the American Standard Version of the bible. It is defined as a proof (W.F. Arndt & F.W. Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 248). So faith is not based on our feelings instead it is having confidence based on evidence or proof.  What this means to me is that God has shown us what He can do by the things He has done in the past for us and for other people.  So if He could do that for old Sally, GIRL DON’T YOU THINK HE WANTS TO DO THE SAME FOR YOU!!! 

Pretty much, faith begins and ends in the realm of the unseen.  It is assurance supported by evidence concerning the things we do not know by our own experience which is why we need faith and patience.  You see if you have been there done that, it is easy to wait for something to happen or believe it will happen. But when ya don’t know what is to come, I don’t know about all of you but I always get impatient and want to just do it myself.   OOOHHH especially when I feel like it is taking too long!!!  But NO faith says you sit back patiently and let God get your ducks in a row and then you’ll know what to do next and when to do it.   Knowing this is when and how we lean on God and not lean on our own understanding. You have to lean because if you have never been in this place before, you actually have NO understanding of your own to try and figure things out anyway, right.  So if you lean not on your own understanding but instead lean on faith that allows you to trust that God is in control, then you know that difficulties and tragedies happen but you have the faith to withstand them.  Leaning on God helps you to know there is a rainbow that comes after every storm and that there is something to gain in every loss which only comes if we have the faith and patience to wait it out.  So how do we learn to lean on God? Allow me to share a popular poem with you, that you may have read before, called Footprints in the Sand that will help make this point,

 One night a man had a dream. He dreamed he was walking along the beach with the LORD.  Across the sky flashed scenes from his life.  For each scene he noticed two sets of footprints in the sand: one belonging to him, and the other to the LORD.  When the last scene of his life flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand.  He noticed that many times along the path of his life there was only one set of footprints.  He also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in his life.  This really bothered him and he questioned the LORD about it: “LORD, you said that once I decided to follow you, you’d walk with me all the way. But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why when I needed you most you would leave me.” The LORD replied: “My son, my precious child, I love you and I would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.”

What a powerful story!  I remember the first time I read this and how I got a overwhelming feeling of how God carries you or has your back even when you don’t know it.  That is what faith is about!  So when you are faced with a challenge, lean with it as you put on that patience that reminds you to live through the eyes of faith.  You may not be able to see what lies ahead but you know that all good things come to those that wait.  This assurance helps you to stay calm when you are faced with adversities, knowing that you can lean on God and He will carry you through it. Lean on God by drawing near to Him and focusing on building up who you are as you wait using the tools (the fruits of the spirit which we are going through all 9 this year) God has given us all as a guide on how to act in any given situation.   So as we focus on Leaning With It this week, here are a few bible verses to remind you to Lean With It….

“But those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31 (NKJ)

 “Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for Him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes. Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper—it only leads to harm. For the wicked will be destroyed, but those who trust in the Lord will possess the land.”  – Psalm 37:7-9 (NLT)

“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry.” – Psalm 40:1 (NIV)

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” – Galatians 6:9  (NIV)

“We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.” – Hebrews 6:12 (NIV)

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One response

11 06 2010
Darrylon Evans

Good morning Nicole! As I read this, I am filled with tears! I have had my Masters for a year now and no promotion. It feels like my paths are being blocked and now, I have recently learned that the non-raise promotion I received last year is ending and I have to return to a classroom. I feel so frustrated but I have been reminded to lean because God is going to carry me through. Thank you so much!

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