Never giving up has been a hard lesson for me to learn. After years of standing on God’s promises by faith, I understand how easy it would be to fold up my dreams and toss them into the nearest garbage pail of failure. Although my patience, endurance and resolve have improved, I have discovered the key factor that prevents me from throwing in the towel. This truth may seem simple and obvious, but I believe it is not aggressively sought after in the every day, ins-and-outs of normal life. This choice has nothing to do with determination, strength or fortitude; and has everything to do with losing one’s life in Christ.
The choice is submission.
I know that submission has many connotations, but I want to focus on the freedom found in not having our own agendas, timelines, plans, schedules, ideas and standards based on the extremely limited and dull imagination of the human mind compared to the mighty thoughts and plans of God. “For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55.9 NLT). God’s promises are so beautiful and so profound that we can’t possibly fathom how they will come to life and what they will look like when they do. Submission allows us to remain content in the fruition of God’s plan even when it doesn’t line up with our expectations.
The dominating factor that urges me to quit is the feeling of disappointment. When I try to force my plans into God’s will for my life, I will automatically be set up for major heartache because His ways are not my ways. I can look back at all the times I felt like God let me down, and they were each due to my own idea of how God’s promises should be unfolding in my life. I have finally come to the conclusion that I will never be able to guess God’s movement; and, unlike my plans, I am completely confident that His plans will benefit His Kingdom, Glorify His name and rescue His people from sin.
Therefore, I can shed the worry that comes with organizing my life according to my expectations, and I can rest in the knowledge that God can be trusted to fulfill His promises no matter what my circumstances look like, no matter what other people say, and no matter what mistakes I make along the way. “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10.23 NIV). God is faithful, and He uses His infinite imagination to fulfill His will in new and amazing ways. Instead of fighting, we should buckle up in this roller-coaster ride of life and hang on tightly to a God who loves us and wants us to have an eternal purpose.
“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland” (Isaiah 43.19 NLT).
Reminder: Don’t forget that God loves to bring things back to life and make a way where there isn’t one; so when your promises seem hopeless, be ready for God to do a miracle!