I really like bikes. I really want a bike. Bikes are everywhere in this town. I almost equally enjoy walking the streets here in Arezzo; in all of Italy really. Walking is good for the body. So is riding bikes. I wish that where I lived in America it was more acceptable to walk around and ride bikes as transportation instead of just sport. I say all of this as my legs are so tight from the sprints I did the other day that walking is quite painful at the moment. You also might get the impression that Italians walk everywhere because they are all about enjoying life. That may be true, but my theory is more along the lines of everything is so small it makes driving a hassle. Eh, let’s just walk instead.
But back to bikes. I think I rode my bike more than anything else as a kid. I’m not really sure why I enjoy bikes so much. I am a bit ADD though. Just ask my brother-in-law. He’ll be honest with you. You see, bikes remind me of what I want to say today. Bikes have tires, that are connected to the bike. Someone controls the pedals and it makes the tires go in circles. Eventually point A on the tire comes back around to the same spot, over and over and over again. That is unless the tire explodes from some crazy insane catastrophe. Why does this even matter and what is my point? Today it is a bit of an analogy of me. I also really like analogies. Sometimes my analogies don’t really make sense; it is more of the ADDness that causes me to move from one thought to the next…..
I told you that I have trust issues. Everyday I wake up and have to remind myself of what I knew to be true the day before. I don’t really know that I have trust issues; except that I have to remind myself everyday. If you asked me if I trusted God, I would say absolutely. You would question me again when you saw my actions to be incongruent with my words. Most of my trust issues arise in the midst of confusion; which is most likely common for many of us.
I hate it when I do not understand something. When I do not understand, I live in confusion. Someone once told me that God is not a God of confusion. Yet I live in it. I live in it now. I have been living in it. Sort of. I get confused because I do not understand. Yet, God understands. And here is where He met me today.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. 7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and turn away from evil.”
Now this is what I call a jewelry verse. It’s one of those verses (or few verses really) that covers the jewelry in the Christian bookstores, or that everyone gets tattooed on themselves, or that is put on 60% of t-shirts that need a verse on them. That kind of bothers me. The verse becomes so generic that it can cause us to dismiss the importance of it. Hey, don’t miss the importance of any Scripture.
I do trust the Lord; but I also want to understand. When I do not understand what God is doing, which is often lately, I am tempted to make it understandable to myself. That is where I get into trouble and frustrated. I am instructed not to lean on my own understanding but instead to acknowledge Him in all my ways. Practically, for me, that looks like that little thing of me waking up everyday and reminding myself of what I know to be true. I know it to be true that God is sovereign. I know it to be true that He has a plan for me. I know it to be true that what will be is already done. I do not need to understand. I need to rest in uncertainty, because I trust that God is certain. He will make my path known to me, it just may not be when I want Him to. And He has a good reason for that, because it’s not time yet. When I act on my own wisdom because I am too impatient to wait for His timing, I get into major trouble. Thus, I should fear the Lord instead. I should trust Him. It’s a cycle. Like the tire. I am continually brought back to what I know to be true. As I complete my circle, He is still pedaling.
What is more:
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, 21 to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”
I spend all of this time thinking about what I do not understand and about what could become of what I do not understand. I can only think within the perimeters of what I already know of God, because I can not yet comprehend or invent what things I have not yet learned of Him. There is a lot of Him to know and understand. Sometimes my thinking limits what He can do. He is able to do far more than I really know.
He knows my wants and He knows my needs and He knows the difference between the two.
I desire many things, and even though I often act in opposition to this, I ultimately desire for my life to bring Him glory.
So would the things that come of what I do not understand be for His glory, and not my pleasure or satisfaction. Would it be for the glory of His name for generations to come. Amen.