A pat on the back, kick in the seat
by PASTOR JON HUIZENGA
River Rock Church
A quick scan of Facebook shows people are processing their return to life after the holidays. Some are depressed. Some are unmotivated. A few are launching full speed ahead. How are you? Personally, I’m a mixture: part melancholy, part gung-ho.
At times like this, I can use both a pat on the back and a kick in the seat. The following is working for me, maybe it will for you: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight,” the Bible, Proverbs 3:5-6.
This is a popular excerpt from the “wisdom” literature in the Bible. It is about how to live a successful life. I see in it God saying three things:
1. Trust me.
2. Acknowledge me.
3. Get there (Doing the first two will result in the third).
The “Trust me” section is the pat on the back. The hard part of this new year is its uncertainty. You wonder whether you’ll experience all that life has to offer. Christmas and New Year’s Eve, for good or bad, are over. They were what they were. Will the future be enough? Will it be good? I hear God saying, “Stop trying to be me. You don’t have to have all the answers. What you need is to trust me with all your heart.”
The “Acknowledge me” section is the kick in the seat. Since you are not God, get off the throne and acknowledge that He belongs on it! Yes, that takes commitment. If He’s on the throne, He deserves attention. Start reading the Bible; get involved in a local church where you can grow. If you need help, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll help you find a way to start. But this isn’t just for beginners. Involved Christians are prone to kicking God off the throne periodically and need to be reminded to get it together. Stop whining and do what you need to do!
The “Get there” section is about the peace that comes from trusting and acknowledging God. We may not even know where “there” is supposed to be. Trusting and acknowledging will put you and me on the straightest path to God’s good future.
God understands you. He loves you. He’s got a pat on the back and a kick in the seat for you, if you need it.