Earlier this week, I administered the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment to students from the online school where I work. I traveled for this because students can live anywhere in the state of Minnesota and attend. I had a nice group of girls, sat in a fifth floor conference room, and overlooked Lake Bemidji.
It was a beautiful experience…except for the waiting…
As some students finished their tests, I became antsy for the others to do so as well. Initially, I looked forward to relaxing in my hotel room. Later – as decisions were made about what to do for students who had not arrived at testing sites, I knew that I needed to get on the road and test a student in a library in another town.
While this is a very simple example of waiting and my lack of patience (much like an earlier post about waiting), I find that my impatience and distaste for waiting can lead to harmful outcomes.
When I am impatient while driving, I am quick to make poor decisions and could put myself and others in harm’s way. This is true in other areas of my life as well.
When I make decisions too quickly, do not think them through, do not weigh the options, and – most importantly – do not consult the Lord, I am putting myself into harm’s way.
I see myself as a better decision maker than God many times.
Just like the Israelites who lost patience with Moses and God and made a golden calf so that they would have a god that they could see, I often refuse to wait and see what God has in store for me.
I set myself up as a god when I do this.
As I listened to today’s passage, I wondered if I had idols in my life.
I value many things such as education and a good work ethic. I do not think that they are idols for me, though. In fact, I do not think that I place so much value on anything that I would see it as an idol.
I do see myself as an idol, though, when I do not put God first.
I do the same thing when it comes to forgiving myself and others. God can surely forgive me…I value what Christ did on the cross…but can I forgive myself? Can I forgive you for what you did to me?
I think that if God forgives us we must forgive ourselves. Otherwise, it is almost like setting up ourselves as a higher tribunal than Him. – CS Lewis
God alone deserves the place on the throne – not me.
When I become impatient with Him, when I refuse to see that He forgives (which means that I must also forgive), and when I do not consult Him about my life, I place myself on the throne.
I do not want to be like the people of Israel – who wandered through the wilderness for extra time because of their unwillingness to listen to God.
I want to be like Moses who (See Exodus 33) found rest in the Lord’s presence.
The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” – Exodus 33: 14
This is my desire…to follow…to rest…and to know that God’s will for my life is bigger and better than anything I could imagine.
In spite of all that God has done for you, do you have any idols in your life? Can we decide to turn from them today?