Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Meditation for the week of March 9, 2007

Numbers 9:17 Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, after that the children of Israel would journey; and in the place where the cloud settled, there the children of Israel would pitch their tents.

I have friends with GPS systems in their cars. Some of the systems are very sophisticated and will guide them around traffic congestion and will tell them just how many feet it is until the next turn. However, they have to trust them and they have to obey the instructions for the the systems to be useful. I have a friend who didn’t think the directions from his system were making sense and went the way he “thought was right”. He ended up in a traffic jam. Many of us do that in spiritual things. The Bible says in Proverbs 16:25, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” Using God’s GPS requires us to depend on what He says and to obey what He has said in His Word. Then God’s Piloting System will not fail us. Many people miss out on God’s salvation because they do not let God do the piloting.

Some of us have had the joy of being in the right place at the right time and knowing that God has used us to speak for Him or to minister to sheep in His flock. But when we were used in that way, we were using God’s Piloting System. In Acts 9, Philip used the system and saw an influential man traveling in a chariot saved and baptized. In Acts 16, Paul used the system and instead of going into Asia Minor or Turkey with the Gospel, he got his Macedonian call and went to Greece. In Acts 16, twice Paul tried to go where he thought he should go and he was stopped. Then when his heart burn kept him from sleeping soundly and he got his vision of the man from Greece wanting his help, Paul knew right away why he wasn’t allowed to go to Turkey. Sometimes God’s Piloting System says set up camp and wait. Other times it tells us to get moving.

Sometimes a closed door or unfavorable circumstances can be interpreted as Satan’s resistance to a Godly project or it can be interpreted as God’s resistance to an ungodly project. An open door or favorable circumstances can be interpreted as God’s blessing or as Satan trying to deceive us into taking the easy way instead of the hard way. So how are we to read God’s Piloting System?

I believe that when the Lord is guiding there will be a burning desire that can’t be forgotten placed in our hearts with regard to the work we are called to do. The old testament prophets had “burdens”. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 9:16, “Woe is me if I do not preach the gospel!” Overseers should desire the work that they are called to do (1 Timothy 3:1). Then of course we need to pray about it and we need to make sure that what we want to do is Scriptural. We may want to talk to others about it, but in our day there are not very many people who are giving spiritual advice with regard to how to serve the Lord. Many are giving advice that “makes sense.” God’s way often does not make sense. It doesn’t make sense that the Gospel should be a free gift. It doesn’t make sense that sometimes God sends us to do works that do not appear to be productive. When Isaiah finally got himself cleansed and consecrated in Isaiah 6, he was willing to volunteer for duty. The Lord told him to go but warned him that the people wouldn’t listen and that from a natural point of view, his mission was doomed to failure. Even the Lord’s disciples were told that the servant is not better than his master and that they would experience the same rejection that the Lord was experiencing (Matthew 10:25).

When we use the Lord’s GPS, sometimes others will encourage our work, other times they will discourage us. Sometimes our work will seem successful while other times it will seem like we failed. Sometimes we will be camped and sometimes we will be on the move. But we will be where we are supposed to be when we are supposed to be there, and we will know the joy that comes from being used by the Lord to advance His kingdom.

Bruce Collins

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