One of the biggest laughs I enjoy is to look at the disastrous cooking ‘failures’ that people post on the internet. This is mostly because it reminds me what many of my attempts have been like.
While I really enjoy cooking (and eating) good food, the flops and failures usually have a few common errors. Either I have made the recipe up on the spur of the moment, remembering a flavour or dish once tried. Alternatively, I may start out well with a recipe, and find I don’t have the correct ingredients, so end up substituting with something that is not quite the same – or even leaving an essential ingredient out (like the flour in a cake). My third common error is that I don’t follow the recipe properly. I usually think I know better, and do it my way – only to end up being disappointed at the results.
This passage in James set me thinking that our spiritual lives can be a bit like this too. Sometimes we are needing to make choices or respond on the spur of the moment and don’t know (or think we know better) what God’s best way is. This usually ends in some sort of disaster of my own doing. When I try and fix it myself with my own methods and good ideas, it mostly ends in a mess too. There are even times when I may know the truth but fail to apply it as the Lord intends it to be applied – again with disappointing results.
So, what is the answer? Read the instructions… Such a simple truth. It was here that I felt the Lord bring a further insight.
It is good that we hear the truth in the Word (His will, His ways and in His perfect time). It is imperative that we understand the truth from His Word – to explore the concept until we understand it fully. This may be a way that is different to our way of thinking, but as we understand God’s heart for us, we become willing to accept a different way. Finally, we need to apply that truth, to our hearts, our lives, our relationships … wherever we are seeking guidance.
It takes a teachable heart – one that has experienced enough ‘failures’- to be ready to search for a different way. It’s a heart that is tired of wasting good ingredients and time on something that is not digestible.
Do you find yourself asking questions today? How? Or why? Or even when? Perhaps it would be good to see what the Word teaches about your question – relationship problems, fears, sickness. They all have answers in the Word. If you are not sure, ask a more mature Christian friend to help you to find the truth in the Word, and to understand it. Then ask yourself, “Can I accept this as truth from Almighty God?” When you find you are able to accept it, then you need to also apply it. This may include confession, repentance, forgiveness and more. But, when our hearts are willing to be willing, the changes can come.
Healing of the body, soul (mind, will and emotions) and human spirit can only come when God’s Kingdom order is restored. That means when we follow His instructions intentionally, with understanding, and commitment.
It all starts with a willing heart to seek truth in your unique situation today.
Prayer: Father, I know that so often I have not known, or made an effort to find out Your truth for my problems. At times I have even tried to mend them myself. I am so sorry. Today I really desire to seek Your truth, to understand and accept it. Please help me Holy Spirit – I cannot do this alone. My heart is willing to be willing to changed, but I need Your help to show me how to apply this to my life. Thank You for Your living Word that is a light to my feet and a lamp to my path. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship. Provided full acknowledgement is made to Seeds of the Kingdom as the source, you are also welcome to use it in a non-commercial way and reproduce it in magazines or other Christian websites. The copyright for any commercial use of the material remains with Ellel Ministries International.