A Year with Oswald – Week 3

by | May 20, 2011

SCRIPTURE: “Add to your faith virtue…” (“Furnish your faith with resolution” Moffatt)  2 Peter 1:5

OSWALD: “Add” means there is something we have to do. We are in danger of forgetting that we cannot do what God does, and that God will not do what we can do. We cannot save ourselves nor sanctify ourselves, God does that; but God will not give us good habits, He will not give us character, He will not make us walk aright. We have to do all that ourselves, we have to work out the salvation God has worked in.

MY THOUGHT: How I wished You used a magic wand rather than my choices and the anvil of life to shape me to Your likeness, Lord. It would be a lot easier on me, not to mention more efficient for You! How frustrating it must be to have to wait for me to decide to obey. To respond to the nudging of Your Spirit and finally get off the couch of my complacency and partner with You in my transformation.

2 Peter 1:3 tells us that Your divine power “has given us everything we need for life and godliness”  – which includes the power to live a holy life as well as the desire to do it. You have not left us helpless, Lord, but as Oswald points out, You “will not do what we can do.” We must work out what You have so graciously worked in.

I love the practicality of today’s entry:
Beware of the tendency of asking the way when you know it perfectly well. Take the initiative, stop hesitating… Be resolute when God speaks, act in faith immediately on what He says…take the initiative, take the step with your will now, make it impossible to go back. Burn your bridges behind you – “I will write that letter”; “I will pay that debt.” Make the thing inevitable.

I tend to want to make this entry about the large things of life – the dreams and visions I feel You have given me…the directives for ministry I feel You’ve dropped in my heart. But if I am not obeying Your promptings in the little things – like disciplining my cravings, cleaning my house, paying my bills, choosing to give a soft answer rather than one that’s harsh – what use is it to attempt to obey in the big things? Even God-sized dreams will eventually be undermined by an ignored, thus determined lack of character.

So what “thing” must I make “inevitable” today, Lord? At what point of delayed obedience do I need to go back to and obey? What virtue or character quality would You suggest I “add” to my faith today?

Thank You, sweet Father, that as I actively respond to Your leading, You will provide the grace to do what You ask. Both the big things as well as the small. Minus the magic wand, of course, but with the strength provided by Your wonderful Holy Spirit.

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