It started out with us talking about deception. Where are we deceived? II Timothy 3:13-14 says,
"But wicked men and imposters will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and leading astray others and being deceived and led astray themselves. But as for you, continue to hold to the things that you have learned and of which you are convinced, knowing from whom you learned [them]..." Because we've been seekers of Truth, we're cautious about being deceived. We know it can/does happen to any of us!! We even talked about how when people age, many are deceived. They make up their minds that they are "right" and close their minds to Truth. Instead of being humble, teachable, pliable, changeable and adaptable, they become deceived because their minds are no longer open.
In fact, James 3:13-14 says this: "Who is there among you who is wise and intelligent? Then let him by his noble living show forth his [good] works with the [unobtrusive] humility [which is the proper attribute] of true wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy (envy) and contention (rivalry, selfish ambition) in your hearts, do not pride yourselves on it and thus be in defiance of and false to the Truth." Truth and wisdom come through humility. Pride leads to deception. Wow. Wisdom is NOT being "right!" In fact, don't pride yourself on Truth--that is superficial wisdom.
We talked this morning at length about how this life is not about us. It's all about God and His plan. Why do we have expectations, opinions and assumptions? Because we want to be in control!! And even beyond that...we fear. We fear we won't get our way. So we then drive our opinions and expectations to the point of getting our way and being in control of every stinking situation that touches our lives. We fear; therefore, we control and manipulate.
But God is wanting us to get to the place of pure trust. He wants us to humble ourselves and trust Him...and to trust His plan. Instead of having expectations, opinions or assumptions, He just wants us to ask Him. "What leads to strife (discord and feuds) and how do conflicts (quarrels and fightings) originate among you? Do they not arise from your sensual desires that are ever warring in your bodily members? You are jealous and covet [what others have] and your desires go unfulfilled; [so] you become murderers. [To hate is to murder as far as your hearts are concerned.] You burn with envy and anger and are not able to obtain [the gratification, the contentment, and the happiness that you seek], so you fight and war. You do not have, because you do not ask." James 4:1-2 We just don't ASK! Don't assume. ASK! Don't have an opinion. ASK! Don't have expectations. ASK! Don't try to control every situation. ASK! Don't walk in pride, thinking you know more than God. ASK.
The plan is all about God. We need to recklessly abandon ourselves to the King. Remember the story of Abigail? She was in a life and death situation because of a foolish husband who made a foolish decision. She didn't have to manipulate and control out of fear. She recklessly abandoned herself to God and acted in faith and saved the lives of many people that day. God doesn't just have a plan for our husbands, He has a good plan for us, too. What does God ask us to do? Submit to Him. Trust Him. Ask Him. And let Him fulfill His good plan.
That sounds so easy...but it's a little hard for this control freak! So the three of us went to the cross this morning (See above photo--Jodina's husband, Michael, got a cross on his land for his birthday and it was installed this past week!) and laid our fear, pride, deception, and control at the foot of the cross...and asked for His resurrection power in our lives. We drew a line in the sand and have chosen to humble ourselves and TRUST GOD. (We love making visual displays of what's going on in our hearts.) No more controlling out of fear. No more deception. We abandoned deception at the cross and recklessly abandoned ourselves to the King.