Walking By Faith, Not Accolades–God’s Greatest Gift

Every once in awhile I read something that yanks at my soul strings. It’s as if God was speaking directly to me. And, depending on the nature of the content, I either embrace it (Yes, God, thank You!) or try to explain it away (No, God, that couldn’t be for me…). Whether a loving nod of approval, conviction or instruction, the message is always right on time.

I read something that spoke to me earlier and feel inclined to share. Only you and God will know why it speaks to you, if at all. It’s changed slightly from the original to reflect my own inner Spirit…

We walk by faith, not accolades — An adapted message from Oswald Chambers

“We walk by faith, not by sight” –2 Corinthians 5:7.

For awhile, we are fully aware of God’s concern for us. But then, when God begins to use us for His work and purpose, we take on a pitiful look. We begin talking only of our trials and tribulations. And, all the while, God continues to try and make us do our work as hidden people. Humble people. People who are not in the spotlight.

None of us would be hidden spiritually or otherwise if we could help it. Can we honestly do our work with fervor and zeal when God has sealed up Heavenly blessings and earthly praise?

Some of us yearn to be brightly illuminated saints with golden halos. We crave the continual glow of inspiration and affirmation. A self-assured saint, however, is of no value to God. In that state, he is abnormal, unfit, and completely unlike God. After all, we are here not as angels, but as men and women to do the laborious work of the world. And, we are to do it with infinitely greater power in order to withstand the struggle. Why? Because we have been born from above.

If we continually try to bring back those exceptional and divine moments of inspiration, it is a sign that it is not God we’re after. Instead, we have become obsessed with those moments in which God came and spoke to us. And we are insisting that He does it again. But, what God really wants us to do is to walk our lives by faith. How many of us have inadvertently set ourselves aside as if to say, ‘I won’t do this anymore unless God appears to me (gives me a sign; speaks to me, etc)’? He won’t do it. Not that way.

As believers, fully surrendered and living for God’s will, we are called to get up on our own without any special inspiration or sudden “touch” from God. But wait! Herein lies the real surprise! It is in these ordinary moments of our (quiet and humble) work that we find ourselves exclaiming, “Well look at that! He’s been here all along!”

My beloved, we can’t live for those exceptional moments. Those freak touches of inspiration. They are meant to be divine and intermittent touches of favor. Rather, we are to mature in our faith; understanding that God is always working with, in, and through us — in all ways at all times. God will give us those divine touches of inspiration when He sees that we will no longer be led away in vain by them. And we must never consider those rare moments as the standard way of life. Our daily, hard work is our standard. It is in these ordinary, every day moments of life that we receive our greatest (and most refining) gifts. And we need only our eyes of faith to see them.

Dear Lord, help me to be as humble as your handmaid and as meek as your most lowly servant. Help me to abandon my worldly desires and acquire spiritual eyes to see your most hidden gifts; treasuring them through eyes of faith. Amen.

Adapted from Oswald Chambers; commentary and adaptations by Meisha Johnson