Sometimes doing things ourselves isn’t always the best idea, is it?
My mechanic certainly seems to think so.
I saw a humorous sign at his shop a few months ago when I was getting the snow tires put on my car. It read:
Regular rate: $1 per hour
If you watch: $2 per hour
If you help: $10 per hour
If you tried to fix it yourself and couldn’t: $20 per hour.”
I guess sometimes it’s simply better to let an expert handle things!
It’s no different in our lives, is it?
Sometimes God wants us to hand Him the reins and trust that He’ll come through for us. If we try to do things our own way, it can end up being costly and taking more time.
To be certain, there are many things God expects us to do for ourselves. He expects us to work hard, to obey Him, to be forgiving, and to love Him and others.
But there are some things that God wants to do for us. He doesn’t need our help to accomplish certain things, and in fact wants us to take a back seat and watch Him come through for us.
The problem is that sometimes we think that if we leave things up to God, He won’t give us what we want, when we want it. We think we know what’s best for ourselves and don’t trust in God’s goodness or His timing. We try to do things in our own power instead. When that happens, we usually make our situation worse by getting ahead of God’s plan.
Think of Abraham and Sarah in the Old Testament. God had told them that they’d have a son, even though they were well advanced in age. Despite God’s promise, they grew tired of waiting and eventually took matters into their own hands. Sarah encouraged her husband Abraham to conceive a child with her servant Hagar.
A son was indeed born to Hagar, Ishmael by name. But this wasn’t the child of promise that God had intended. Years later, a son was miraculously born to Sarah and Abraham: Isaac. This was the son that was the fulfillment of God’s promise years earlier.
What did Abraham and Sarah actually accomplish by getting ahead of God’s plan and doing things their own way? Years of domestic strife between Sarah and Hagar, and centuries of conflict between the Ishmaelites and the Israelites. All of that could have been avoided had they waited for God to do things His way and in His timing.
Moses learned this lesson the hard way, too. Moses saw how cruelly his fellow Hebrews were being treated by their Egyptian taskmasters, and wanted to save them. This was a noble impulse, but Moses took matters into his own hands instead of waiting for God to deliver them. His attempt to save his people failed miserably.
After murdering an Egyptian, Moses found he had to flee for his life to the Midian desert. He spent the next 40 years there tending his father-in-law’s sheep, certainly a very humbling experience for someone who had grown up in Pharaoh’s palace.
It was only when Moses was 80 years old that God commissioned him to deliver the children of Israel from the Egyptians. This time, his efforts succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. Because the rescue came about in God’s timing and through God’s power, the miracle of their deliverance is something we still talk about today.
If you’re facing a difficult situation and God has promised you that He’ll deal with it, wait for Him to act. Trust that He’ll resolve the problem better than you can.
As we’ve learned in the above stories, God is merciful when we mess up and can restore us and bring about the promised miracle anyway. There may be repercussions to our actions that we still have to live with, however.
We can save ourselves a lot of time and costly consequences when we give God space and time to act. Let’s fix our eyes on Jesus instead of trying to fix everything ourselves!
“Behold, I am God, is anything too hard for me?”(Jeremiah 32:27)
© 2021 Lori J. Cartmell. All rights reserved.