“Putting out a fleece” is a Christian code language for “I’ll see if circumstances confirm God wants me to do this or that.” If you’re not sure where this idea comes from, the story is in Judges 6-8.
A lot of people considering an OYC use this kind of language when describing how they are going to make a decision:
- “I’m going to apply for a job and see if God opens a door for me there. If He doesn’t, I’ll just know God doesn’t want me to go.”
- “I’m waiting to find out if I got approved for a new home loan, but if it doesn’t go through, I am going to take that as a sign from God to just go on an OYC.”
- “I’ve been praying that God will make it really clear to me whether or not I should go.”
All these statements reflect something positive: a desire to be convinced of what God’s specific will is for my decision through some visible sign.
The problem is these statements also tragically leave out faith in God’s care. They can just as easily be expressed as:
- “If God makes it really easy for me to go by giving me an great job in advance, I’ll go. Otherwise, I’m not taking any risks.”
- “If I can come up with some good reason not to go, and reasonably attribute it to God, I’m off the hook.”
- “I’m not going anywhere until God satisfies my need for certainty.”
Step out on faith. Don’t require God to grease the skids to get you moving. Put your trust in God, not in “confirming” circumstances.
From Sam Laing’s Mighty Men Of God:
Many of us are focused on doing, not on being. We want to work, accomplish and achieve for God, but we do not desire to draw near to God and deal with our inner selves. Venturing into the deep waters frightens us, so we wade in the shallows. We do not think deeply, feel deeply or love deeply. We are light-weights.
Steve Kinnard asks us to “remember our brothers and sisters from the early church who were willing to die for the cause.”
I often think of how I would have fared in the days of persecution. I remember walking through the Coliseum in Rome. It’s debated, but most believe that this was one of the places in Rome where our brothers and sisters were fed to the lions. I asked myself as I was standing in the Coliseum, “What would you have done if you had been captured?” I don’t know for sure. I think a good test is this: How much am I willing to die to self each and every day for Jesus? If I’m not willing to die to self today, it’s unlikely that I would have been willing to face death by the cross or mutilation by the lions.
Read the whole thing.
This week’s Monday Music comes from Norway, where we have a great OYC site.