The Douay-Rheims translation of the Bible illustrates these feelings poignantly:
“Hope that is deferred afflicteth the soul…” Proverbs 13:12
A big part of the challenge is that we often don’t know how to stop going around the same mountain. We feel desperate to move forward into the things God has for us, but we just don’t know how.
Searching for a solution is often further confused by all the bad information we get from social media and other uninformed places. Facebook theology is all over the place, with everyone having an opinion but few actually hearing from God.
There is a simple – though difficult to hear – truth. Sometimes, believing is not enough. Many times, professing is not enough. We often waste time rebuking things that simply refuse to be “buked.” No amount of positive thinking or repetitive affirmations are going to change your situation.
Far too often the one – most important – thing missing from our spiritual routine is the one – and only – thing that will actually free us from repeating the past over and over again. Are you ready? Are you sitting down? Okay, here goes. The key is… Obedience! Yep that’s right. We simply need to do what God says.
Stop the Madness
As a Pastor, it always saddens me when people are willing to stand on their head, gargle peanut butter, and sing the National Anthem in an effort to change their situation, yet stubbornly cling to the very things that have kept them captive to their frustrating, disappointing and unfruitful lives.
Here’s a hint: If what you have been doing for years was going to work, it probably would have by now. Israel went through the same process over and over again. They tried to make things work by following the idolatrous patterns of their captors, but it just kept getting them in trouble and delaying their progress.
The Lesson from Israel
For forty-years they wandered in the wilderness waiting for the Promise when they didn’t have to. A whole generation died in the wilderness without ever experiencing the Promise, all because they refused to obey God.
God’s Desire for You
May your journey be much shorter and productive. I pray that God will clearly reveal the next step you should take and give you the courage and strength to take it. He has already spoken clearly in His Word:
“You have been going around this mountain long enough!” D’varim (Deu) 2:3 CJB