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Instructions Provided // Emily Albrecht

By April 29, 2019Spiritual Life

I’m not good at assembling furniture, specifically anything from Ikea or Amazon. Really anything that has more than 5 pieces, I struggle to put together correctly. Don’t get me wrong, I could probably assemble it, but it would have missing pieces, it would be crooked, and it would likely not be functional. I believe I have a 6th love language, and it’s when people that I love put together furniture so that I don’t have to.

Anyways, in trying to build certain things, I have become so frustrated and angry, and even hopeless that it will never get built or function properly. I sometimes think that if only the instructions from the manufacturer were more clear and straightforward then maybe I could do it. I have even gone so far as to think that the instructions are purposefully trying to confuse me and the builder doesn’t actually want me to be successful at building whatever it is.

For many of us, this is also our view of our Creator, God. Our lives have all these pieces and moving parts and a lot of times they’re not harmonious, they don’t fit together, and our life in a snap shot looks crooked and uneven, as if it will fall apart with one little touch or shake of foundation. Just like the manufacturers of our bar carts or dressers provide poor instruction and no explanations, we feel God has left us to figure out how things go together on our own, and we then struggle to reconcile or understand some of our circumstances and how they could possibly have purpose.

Let me just say this, I still cannot for the life of me put anything together, but I have been able to view my life differently since I started studying and reading what I consider an instruction manual for life, God’s word, the Bible. I’d like to lovingly challenge how you think about God so that you might see a glimpse of His desire as a Father to lovingly instruct you in life. God used people like you and me to explain to us who we are as a result of who He is and these stories provide the framework in which we can approach the pieces of our life and how they’re meant to be built together.

Here’s what scripture tells us about our new life in Him:

  1. We can be adventurously and cheerfully expectant for the future!
  2. We can be full of new dreams for our futures and for our friends!
  3. We can be living larger than life itself!  

Choosing to live in relationship with God is truly not as complicated as we make it seem with religion, rules, and ridiculousness. When we choose to ask God, our Creator, to help us put our lives together, he actually gives us a completely new way of life.

“So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children.” Romans 8:12-16 MSG

Paul is writing to the Roman people about what happened to him when he stepped into a new life of loving God. He is explaining that we actually have the freedom and power to leave the past behind. Our new life allows us to have hope and look to the future adventurously expectant for all that God wants to do. Paul is emphasizing the power of surrendering to a Father and Child like relationship with our Heavenly Father.

For some of us, this is easy to comprehend, we have had Dad’s that go above and beyond and love us deeply and then to imagine God that way is a smoother transition. For others, we have been hurt, abandoned, scarred, abused by our Dad’s and it makes it that much harder to comprehend that God is a good dad, a perfect dad that wants to take care of you and guide you through life.

“Keep a smile on your face. Love from the center of who you are don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practicing the second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder….. Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everyone.” Romans 12:8-12 MSG

Paul goes on in Romans to encourage us to live from a place of love – to be cheerfully expectant, even in the face of difficult times. He instructs us to practice playing the second fiddle. I think he’s just saying, when we love people, let’s not make it about us. And let’s be okay that it’s not about us. This life allows us to live from the center of who we are!

“When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream.” Psalm 126

This is one of my favorite scriptures because is speaks of who God is as a Restorer. When he restored the people of Zion, the fortunes of Zion, dreams came to the people! I pray that as you let God in to the pieces of your life, and as He carefully puts them all together, that your perspective changes, your heart is opened, and you start to dream again for your life, for your future, and for the world. Dream bigger, our God can do anything.

“God’s love is meteoric,

His loyalty astronomic,

His purpose titanic,

His verdicts oceanic.

Yet in his largeness

Nothing gets lost;

Not a man, not a mouse, slips through the cracks.”

Psalm 36 MSG

There is nothing about God that is too big or too expansive for Him to understand or handle. This scripture in Psalms highlights how big He is: meteoric, astronomic, titanic, oceanic. And yet, nothing about you or the little tiny pieces of your life are forgotten or accidental. When we focus on living larger than life, the little things come together or fall to the side realizing unimportant.

God doesn’t send you into this life with “instructions not provided” rather gives us an instruction manual for a life with Him. Next time you are feeling overwhelmed, confused, lost, or broken, open up the word of God and receive it’s guidance, peace, and explanation.

Featured Photo by Ruslan Bardash on Unsplash

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