"What have you done?" asked Samuel.
Saul replied, "When I saw that the men were scattering, and that you did not come at the set time, and that the Philistines were assembling at Mikmash, I thought, 'Now the Philistines will come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not sought the Lord's favor.' So I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering."
I wish I could say I was not guilty of this very thing. But I am a Type A control freak. And I struggle with faith not works. And I too have felt compelled to do things to put the odds in my favor. Granted I haven't done a burnt offering ever, but I have most certainly burnt myself out doing things my way instead of God's.
For example: You purchase a system to help you achieve a goal. The goal is not a bad one and you know that you are in it for the right reasons; however, you, wanting to tip the scales in your favor, decide to add more to what the experts have deemed necessary because you want results faster. #burnout
Putting more faith in the system to achieve the results you want, than in the God who will provide them, is not a good idea. 1 Corinthians 3:7 says, "So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow." Our microwave mentality has trained us to believe that if the results we want don't come instantly, then we must put forth more effort, more self-determination, and more self-control if we are to get where we intend to go. And every time we do that, we subtract God and His perfect timing from the equation.
In Hebrews we read that without faith it is impossible to please God. I've often struggled with that because I didn't understand what it really meant. But from life experience, and a really good sermon, I am coming to realize that it's about the faith to believe that He will bring what He wants us to have in His timing and that following Him to that destination is sufficient. Even when His ways make less sense or are counterintuitive to what we think. His ways are now, and always have been, higher than ours. Maybe it's time to live like we believe that.
Father, we know our own stubbornness to think we know more. But the reality is, You created us and You know us better than we know ourselves. You know what we need. Help us to find our joy in You and to trust that in seeking You first, that everything else You want us to have will be added. In Jesus name, amen.