“. . . hear the word of the gospel and believe.” Acts 15:7
Obstacles. How we handle them is a matter of perspective. Some people see obstacles as a puzzle to solve, some see obstacles as opportunity to grow, while others see obstacles as a threat. Obstacles come in all shapes and sizes. The essence of obstruction is anything that impedes our progress in a particular area.
The spiritual obstacle of deep-seated fears freezes us up, so as not to believe and we dare not risk faith in God. Since the garden, we’ve been living in fear.
One of our most basic desires is the desire for safety. We are all surrounded by innumerable dangers and we all defend ourselves against them as best we can. We want safety from sickness, we want to be safe from financial worries. We invest in insurance, shore up savings accounts. We want to be safe from loneliness, so we cultivate friendships.
However, there is the danger of our desire becoming distorted and inverting into dread and danger. Something that would have otherwise been common sense strategies to endure life’s continual challenges, now are clung to as if they are our personal saviors. The tighter we hold, the less likely they will solve our fear.
The house, the career, the pension all become an idol in the present and assume a position to which secondary things have no right. Idols have a way of making us a terror-stricken, tormented creature serving lesser things as though it were a god, then finding no assurance of real safety. In seeking our own safety, we become a slave to it.
We must reroute our confidence in people and things so that it rests on God and nothing else. For the council at Jerusalem the tension had to be resolved. Something or someone is going to determine the direction of our life. It will either be the law or love. One will have to win out over the other. We each must decide.
a. Make a list of your priorities.
b. Where is God in your pursuits?
c. How are you prioritizing His presence?