The Bare Soul - June 29, 2008
Don't Hesitate

1 Kings 18:21 - Elijah came near to all the people and said, "How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him." But the people did not answer him a word.

For whatever reason, those who begin running barefoot will often try to subsidize their running with shoes. I did this for a brief time when I first started barefoot running, but in time I realized that shoes or sandals or whatever I chose to run in besides my bare feet would only keep my feet from evolving and changing to adapt to constant barefoot running. Many might hesitate, not being sure of the outcome if they would totally give themselves to this "new" way of running. In other words, they have no clear idea or vision of the outcome. To hesitate often times means one is unsure and lacks true understanding of the end result. Sometimes, hesitation can be good in that it allows us to think clearly through a situation before blundering in to a bad decision. Often however, it is a character flaw that can be powered by fear of the unknown.

Hesitation is usually the direct result of a lack of vision, or if you like, the inability to see things beyond the present to their eventual conclusion. This is an accurate appraisal of the children of Israel as they stood before the prophet Elijah. They had lost the vision of who God truly was in their lives. They had a clouded understanding of who it was that had delivered their nation from calamity time and time again. In the same regard, If we truly understand who and what the Lord Jesus Christ is and how He sacrificed all so that we could have all, then we would either fall on our faces and worship Him for His great gift, or we would turn away and deliberately choose to live our own way. Even as in 900 B.C. Israel, it is true for us today -- we have the choice to worship the Almighty or any number of "Baals" or idols in our own lives. How does one get to this "clouded" perspective of who the true God is and what He has done and continues to do for us? The problem with most Christians is that we have never had a true vision of the Lord Jesus.. We accept the Lord into our hearts and thank God for the gift of salvation and then continue living our lives the way we see fit. We don't understand, as in the case of the woman who came to Jesus with the alabaster vial of perfume, how one could "waste" themselves on the Lord (Luke 7:37-47). Many would find it inconceivable to give up an hour of their day to read the Word of God, let alone an hour kneeling before the Lord in prayer, listening intently for His voice and His direction. No, these things are foreign to most believers because they have been wooed by the world and the many distractions that would seek to suck up their time.

When I came back to Christ 16 years ago and put the "plug in the jug", I had exhausted myself between the opinion of the world and the opinion of God. I was beat to a pulp, knowing then that my running from God was futile and that I either needed to die to God and continue on my destructive course, or die to sin and destroy it once and for all in my life. It took years of backsliding to figure out that my life was rudderless and on a course of ultimate destruction. Until I had that vision of who I was, who the Lord is, and the life He desired me to live, then I was lost in my own interpretation of what I believed to be right. Once the epiphany came -- that truly I was a man that was undone and without hope outside of Jesus Christ -- then I realized that no longer could I halt or hesitate in my devotion to the One who saved my soul.

Today, it would be an act of betrayal and treason to the Most High to allow the world with all its seductions to woo me into a place of compromise. Double-mindedness, as created by a love for the world apart from Jesus Christ, causes a steady flow of distractions to eventually consume the worldly-minded believer. Believers that have watered down their faith with inordinate "loves" become paralyzed with indecision because their "decider" has been muffled or totally busted from misuse and neglect. It is once again time to get before the Lord and confess ...

My God, I have strayed and my resolve is unresolved because I have compromised my affections with the world. I have hesitated between worshipping You and the "idols"  that distract and that I do so dearly love. But now, O Lord, I confess before you that my life is nothing without You. Therefore, take my life once again and fix my "decider" -- let me once again be strong in the Will of the Lord to fight the good fight of my Savior, Jesus Christ. In His Mighty Name, Amen.

Your Barefoot Servant,

Rick

 

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