It’s Hard to Let Go by John H. Putnam
“I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’” Psalm 91:2 (NIV)
I held the key and opened the door to our new home. We were immediately greeted by an echo of excitement that only comes as sound bounces through an empty space. Since the movers hadn’t come yet, it was just the five of us standing inside the doorway, looking at the place we expected to live for years.
So you can imagine my surprise about 18 months later when I began to feel God leading us somewhere new.
“God, are You kidding me?” I asked in prayer. “I’ve gotten attached to this place. Why do You want it back?”
The answer came back clearly; we were to go where God was taking us next, and this house was a distraction from His plans. God was also protecting us from the enemy’s plans.
The enemy is as cunning as he is patient. He understands so clearly how possessions can create a distraction — build a barrier — between God and us. Satan’s goal is to separate us from Christ and take what He has given us. He will dangle in front of us whatever he believes will attract us, always at the opportune time. And money and possessions are simple and abundant bait. The only guard against the enemy’s distraction is a stronger attraction.
It’s hard for me to let go of something I love. We wanted that house and God let us have it. Now, unexpectedly, we felt God leading us to let it go. I guess if God puts something in your hand, He has the right to take it out. So I prayed: “Help me want You more than I want this house.”
God knew I needed to learn an important lesson. He was teaching me, changing me and reminding me that only He is my refuge and my fortress.
When I opened the door that day, I held a key in my hand — it represented earthly success, shelter, rest, safety and protection. Yet ultimately, God wanted me finding success, shelter, rest and safety in Him alone. He wanted to be our refuge in times of trouble, a fortress in times of attack.
Anne and I have found that following God on our financial journey has always been interesting, but not always easy. The world tries to tell us that success and security are found in having what we want …in a better job, nicer house or newer things. But we’ve learned that the greatest success is wanting what God provides.
When we can let go of what’s in our hands and place our complete trust in God, we can be certain that what comes next will always be better than any plan of our own.
Lord, please guide me, love me, and help me want You more than anything else. Let me always be open to You Lord so I may live and rest in You as my refuge and my fortress. Your plans and Your thoughts are beyond what I know. Help me be confident in Your leading and bold in my following. Be everything to me — my trust, my confidence and my security. May my hands always be open for You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY: Proverbs 19:21, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” (NIV)
Isaiah 55:8-9, “‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the LORD. ‘As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.’”
REFLECT AND RESPOND: Is there something God has put in your hands that is, or has the potential to become, a distraction to Him and His plans for you? It could be anything — a house, a neighborhood, a car, a job, a hobby, or a possession. Would you be willing to let go of something for what God may have in store for you? Please share one something and your prayer for what God may do next.
© 2016 by John H. Putnam. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks John H. Putnam for their sponsorship of today's devotion.
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