I am amazed at how I was fooling myself. I had been pushing to finish a project. Only when it was clear that the deadline was impossible did I let go. Immediately I was overwhelmed by the realisation that I had allowed it to drive far more important things from my life, and sadly much of God’s grace.
For months I have been grappling with Jonah and the way he could worship in the worst imaginable prison – the stomach of a fish: dark, wet and smelling of the stomach acid that was rotting him! (more .. last pages of current Reach -> http://www.navigators.co.uk/assets/Uploads/May-July-2012.pdf ) Now I have a real example of Jonah’s insight:
“Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs.” (Jonah 2:8 NIV).
I could not find either much grace, or perspective while I held onto the deadline. Only when it was dead and buried could I see both the big picture and God’s perspective. It was the same with Jonah. Only when he was thrown overboard and his goals were unobtainable could he take hold of the grace of God and worship with thanksgiving – from the fish’s stomach.
The moment I had perspective I could worship God for His patience and grace. I could see how He had guarded me, even in these driven times. I could praise Him that even if the project was never finished it is in His good hands and I can trust Him.
One thought on “Idols and Perspective”
It is interesting to see how much of our church culture is sadly becoming driven by the worldly goals of life, and measurable outcomes that so often remove the dependence on God’s grace that so often marks out the walk of faith. While I know that many in Christian Leadership would rise up at this point and say “Not me!”, I think if we were honest with ourselves, sometimes the worldly goals are a much easier option to set ourselves than the walk of faith, both for ourselves and for those who are following us to give them a sense that everything’s all right.