What I decide…will be done
On September 27, 1918, T.E. Lawrence, whom we know as Lawrence of Arabia, and his Arab force were in hot pursuit of a retreating Turkish column numbering approximately 2,000 soldiers. Coming upon the village of Tafas south of the city of Damascus they were confronted with the horrifying aftermath of the Turk rampage through the village. Mutilated bodies of women and children lay among the smoking ruins. As the sickened and shaken Lawrence watched the scattered Turkish column disappear over the horizon he was visibly moved at the carnage of the innocent.
This is part of his account… “The village lay still under its slow wreaths of white smoke, as we rode near, on our guard. Some grey heaps seemed to hide in the long grass, embracing the ground in the close way of corpses. We looked away from these, knowing they were dead; but from one a little figure tottered off, as if to escape us. It was a child, three or four years old, whose dirty smock was stained red over one shoulder and side, with blood from a large half-fibrous wound, perhaps a lance thrust, just where neck and body joined.
The child ran a few steps, then stood and cried to us in a tone of astonishing strength (all else being very silent), “Don’t hit me, Baba” she cried. One of my soldiers, Abd el Aziz, choking out something – this was his village, and she might be of his family – flung himself off his camel, and stumbled, kneeling, in the grass beside the child. His suddenness frightened her, for she threw up her arms and tried to scream; but, instead, dropped in a little heap, while the blood rushed out again over her clothes; then, I think, she died.”
Nearly a hundred years later our so called sophisticated world has gone more insane. In May this year, in Miami, USA, a naked man was shot dead after police could not get him to stop eating another man’s face. The officer…approached and saw that the naked man was actually chewing the other man’s head, according to witnesses. The officer ordered the naked man to back away, and when he continued the assault, the officer had to shoot him.
Real stuff! And sometimes hard to believe. It seems our world has gone wacky! Whether it is war, where innocents are killed, or it is what seems a sane and educated society…we are still in desperate need of God in our lives.
Let me share with you three quick thoughts from Job 22:21-28, “Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you. Accept instruction from his mouth and lay up his words in your heart. If you return to the Almighty, you will be restored: If you remove wickedness far from your tent and assign your nuggets to the dust, your gold of Ophir to the rocks in the ravines, then the Almighty will be your gold, the choicest silver for you. Surely then you will find delight in the Almighty and will lift up your face to God. You will pray to him, and he will hear you, and you will fulfill your vows. What you decide on will be done, and light will shine on your ways.”
My first thought goes to understanding what true submission to God really is. Many in the Body of Christ find it hard to submit to those who are in authority. We always feel we are right. We have the answers. We know much more of the real world. Yes, that may be true, but you cannot be in authority until you come under authority. This is not about the outward works of a man, but his true inner heart towards the things of God. Jesus never did anything without His Father’s permission. For the Church to move in Godly authority, we must learn the heart of true submission. The actual Hebrew word used here signifies being a servant who serves willingly.
Secondly, when we truly submit, we truly can experience the ‘shalom’ of God. This ‘shalom’ is in reality the peace of God that surpasses every faculty of human understanding. Shalom means…to be safe, sound, healthy, perfect, complete (1Ki 7:51, Neh 6:18) and signifies a sense of well-being and harmony both within and without. Furthermore it means, absolute completeness, with the absence of agitation or discord and a state of calm without anxiety or stress. This encompasses the body, the mind and the spirit of the person. Yoga cannot supply this, transcendental meditation cannot touch it, reiki cannot handle it and vaastu is not even close to this…money cannot buy it and the world cannot supply this magnificent shalom that God the Father supplies from His Throne. The key to walk in it is becoming a servant with a willing heart in His Kingdom.
Finally, I am fully convinced when this passage says, “…then the Lord Almighty will be your gold…” Of course there is much more here, but it is enough to say that God will be our amazing supplier in all things and for everything that we need to go through this life on earth. Gold is found in deep places, and then needs to be purified for value to come forth. The Lord Himself will provide from places and people and circumstances past our understanding. This is enough to keep all of us secure in Him, no matter what goes on around us!
When we find true delight and satisfaction in serving God and blessing the Body, then the Lord will hear our prayer, move in us and through us and we will indeed see a new day on our lives.