Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Can I Have a Syllabus Please?

When I was in high school, a few teachers I had gave out syllabuses and in college I received a syllabus from my instructors. Being the type of person that likes to see the plan up front, I enjoyed having a guideline of what I needed to do in front of me. Often times I worked ahead. I knew what was expected of me.


But one thing I have noticed about my Christian life is I don’t get a syllabus. I have asked the Lord, “Can I have a syllabus please?”


Do you know what the Lord said to me?


Nothing.


Silence.


I looked at Abram in Genesis 12:1. The Lord told him, “Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.” So Abram gathers all his household belongings and people and headed out not knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11:8, “By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.”


That’s the way it seems to be with me. The Lord has called me for a purpose. I feel like He has shown me my part in the body of Christ, but I just don’t know where I’m going yet or how I’ll get there.


In Genesis 12:2-3 God told Abram His promise to make from him a great nation. I know I have received my call and promise from the Lord as well. He promises in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”


In Acts 15, Paul decided to go back and visit the churches that were planted on his first missionary journey. On this trip he takes Silas with him. They go and strengthen the churches and Timothy joined their team in Acts 16. Paul wanted to go to Asia, specifically Ephesus but was denied by the Holy Spirit to go there. But I noticed that he was not told where to go, so then he headed north to Bithynia but again the Spirit of Jesus would not let him go there either. It was not until Paul got to Troas, which is on the coast and there is no more land to travel on, that he received a vision directing him where to go. I wondered, Why couldn’t the Lord tell him from the beginning to go to Macedonia?


Perhaps like Paul and Abraham I need to learn to walk by faith and not by sight? (2 Corinthians 5:7)


Perhaps having a syllabus would not allow me to walk by faith?


Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”


If I had a syllabus and were able to see all that was before me, would I go where He wants me to or do what He wants me to do? Would I truly live by faith? Would I truly live for HIM? Or would I try to get ahead of His timing as I did with the teachers in school?


I wonder if the Lord has an ongoing list of those to include in the Hall of Faith (Hebrews 11). If He does, will my name be included someday? Will yours?

9 gracious comments:

Karen said...

Shonda,
Excellent!!! I wonder - if God gave us a syllabus and we knew what was planned, would we find ourselves tempted to take things into our own hands and try and make them happen??? Especially if we couldn't see how in the world a certain event or circumstance would ever happen with the way things might be going at the time. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Leigh Gray said...

here is the syllabus He has given me........... one step at a time....... I know I know - that doesn't help much, but with a pure heart to please and glorify Him you really can almost not go wrong.

love you, Leigh

annie said...

Great post. How often I have needed a syllabus I thought only to discover I was sitting in the wrong class. :)

MARY said...

Shonda,
If God had given us a syllabus, could we even deal with it theway he would want us to or would we use it for our own purpose?

Mary

Gods Gal said...

What a beautiful blog entry.!!!! Thank you for putting these thoughts down....blessings and have a super weekend!

Leah said...

I feel fairly certain that if I had a syllabus, being the control freak that I am, I'd try to change it to suit me!!! Yep, it's best for us not to have a syllabus, I think. Thanks for the thoughts!! You reminded me that God's ways are so far above our ways!!

Leah
www.thepoint-leah.blogspot.com

Emily said...

Hey! So true! I defintly would not do well with a syllabus. I think I have tried to create my own so many times based on where I thought we (me and God) were going. Every time it flops! I am just now learning to let Him take the wheele. Thanks for the insight!

darla said...

I have to agree with Leah! and i do want a syllabus! But walking by faith seems like all i can truly handle at one time anyway..so Father always knows best! :) LOL I loved your post.

Lisa said...

HI! SHONDA I PRAY THAT THE NEXT TIME YOU'RE VISITING MY AUNT MARY WE HAVE A CHANCE TO MET. I REALLY LOVE READING YOUR PIECES.