On Doing What Comes Naturally…

Nothing in their experience prepared them for what they saw as they scouted out the land.
The area was lush and green.
Bursting with fruit.
Bumper crops everywhere they looked.

Good land that God had declared to be theirs.

But this good land came with walled cities.
And behind those thick walls, enemies.
And not just any enemies.
Gigantic ones. Literally.
With strong armies backing them.

Naturally, they were afraid.

So they did what came naturally.
When they returned to Moses they reported all their eyes had seen.
Along with all their hearts felt.
“Great land! Horrible enemies.”
“Enormous fruit! Impossible odds.”

And ten of the twelve spies reached the same conclusion: This is a suicide mission. We cannot conquer this land. We give up.
And they inspired the people to give up as well.

They were right.
Naturally, they could not do it.
They did not have what it took to possess an entire new land filled with walled cities, strong armies and giants.
Naturally, it was impossible.

But two of the spies didn’t do what came naturally.
They saw the same circumstances.
Experienced the same impossibilities.
And chose to do what came supernaturally.

They chose to take God at His Word.
He had told them He would give them the land.
He had led them thus far, doing miracle after miracle along the way.
So, while fear was the natural response, Caleb and Joshua chose to go with the supernatural one.
Caleb said, “Let us go up at once and take possession of it; for we will certainly conquer it.” (Numbers 13:30)

But the people did what came naturally.
They tallied their resources.
Compared them to what they were up against.
Left God out of the equation completely.
And gave in to fear instead of faith.

Which led them to rebel against Moses, and ultimately against God.
They refused to be obedient. And paid for it with their lives.
All because they did what came naturally.

I like to think that if I had been one of the twelve spies, I would have been a Joshua or Caleb.
I would have looked at the impossible odds and said, “God’s got this. Let’s go!”

But knowing me, I probably would have done what came naturally – fretted, feared, and forgotten God.

Because the reality is, that is what I do now.
When faced with my own personal walled cities, giants and massive armies, I most often choose the natural response rather than the supernatural one.
I tally my resources.
Compare them to the problem at hand.
Leave God out of the equation.
And give into fear instead of faith.

I might sugar-coat it with terms like, “I’m not worried, just concerned.”
Or, “God, I trust you with my finances but let’s see what I can make happen here.”
Or, “God, I know the pattern you set is for me to work six and rest one day, but if I don’t work today it won’t all get done.”

But those responses are just as faith-less as the ten who said, “We cannot.”

Naturally, I want to see all the outcomes before I proceed.
Naturally, I want to be guaranteed success.
Naturally, I want to guard what is mine, protecting, maybe even hoarding my resources since I don’t know what is coming.
Naturally, I want to put up barriers between you and me, walls around my heart, because I have enough to be concerned about without thinking about you.
Naturally, I want things to go my way, according to my plan, in my timing.
Naturally, I want to walk by sight.

Supernaturally, that all looks different.
When God commands, I obey and leave all the consequences to Him.
When God directs, I let Him define what success looks like.
Because God says give, I give generously, trusting Him to provide.
Because God says love, I let down the walls and let you in, knowing He will be my protector if that is needed.
Because God is God, I choose to surrender completely to His plans, trusting that His timing is perfect and His ways are always right.
And because God loved me enough to send Jesus to die in my place, I can put my hand in His and walk forward with confidence, even in the darkest night and the scariest places, without knowing what is ahead.

None of that happens naturally.
All of it is only possible supernaturally.

But here’s the thing.
Living naturally feels safer.
But it always leads to death.
Death of dreams.
Death of possibility.
Death of trust.
And even physical death.

Doing life my way, without His guidance, care and provision is never a good idea.
Because my vision is limited.
My own power is minimal at best.
And my resources are non-existent.

Doing life His way feels much, much riskier.
And therefore scarier.
But it is actually much safer.
Because it always leads to life.
Abundant life.
Supernatural life.
And life that keeps multiplying, spreading from person to person.

Doing what comes naturally is easy.
I just react.

Doing what comes supernaturally means remembering that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is at work in me. (Ephesians 1:19-20)
It means taking every thought captive to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:5)
Being in constant conversation with Him through my day.
Finding out what His Word says about a topic.
And then applying it to my daily life.
Regardless of how I feel about it.

But here is the incredible thing.
When I do that, He does the heavy lifting.
When I live surrendered to Him, He provides the power to get the job done.
When I seek Him first, He carries me through.

So I get all the power I need to live His way.
AND I get the abundant blessings along the way as well.
The giants get conquered.
The walled cities fall.
The enemy army is repelled.

And I get to enjoy the fruit of HIS labors.
Seeing Him use me in spite of me to bless others.
Experiencing the peace of knowing I am not in charge.
The joy of knowing He’s going to provide everything I need.
The love I need to be able to love others in His name.
And so much more.

Today, I don’t want to do what comes naturally.
I want to constantly and consistently do what comes supernaturally.
Will you join me?

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