Truth Over Comfort

It’s impossible to follow God and not experience change. God is in the business of change. The Holy Spirit expressly came to teach us and to guide us into truth. You cannot be led into truth without being led out of a lie. You cannot leave one state without entering into another state. You cannot create new behaviors without abandoning old ones. This process requires a love for the truth above what you currently believe, even what you believe at this very moment. That, should the Holy Spirit be prompting you to abandon certain sacred ideas (sacred to you, not to God), you would be willing to joyfully let go of them that you may grasp the truth He is revealing to you now.

People often let the bias of what they like to hear filter out what they don’t like to hear. We all do this to varying degrees. We will accumulate the information and facts that support what we currently believe, while simultaneously ignoring everything that flatly disagrees with our pet doctrines. This is why we all need the Teacher.

He has come to help us see what we can’t see, and if we learn to listen to Him, He will heal our blindness. This is why it is so important that we remain humble and teachable before God. 1 Peter 5:5 says “God resists the proud, and gives grace to the humble.” This was part of the sin of the Pharisees. We see this analogy given by Jesus as He sparred with them in John 9:39-41, immediately after He healed a blind man.


39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. 40 And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? 41 Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.


 

Jesus uses this man’s physical blindness as a visual analogy for the spiritual blindness of the Pharisees. Even though they were educated in the law, they were far from the heart of God. Pride and unbelief toward our Teacher, the Holy Spirit, will rob us of the power of the Word of God. As the children of God, we must be mold-able and teachable – like a child.

Children are utterly dependent on their parents for their understanding of the world. They soak it up like a sponge. I, as a parent, have to take that much more care that I do not abuse that faith in me. We Christians, however, do not have to have such fears with Father God. Look at what Jesus says in Luke 11:9-13.


And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 10 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. 11 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? 12 Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?


The Holy Spirit has nothing to share with you that isn’t truth, and to those who diligently seek God, He holds nothing back.

We, however, do have the power to hold ourselves back. We have the power to rob ourselves of a living relationship with God, filled with personal growth and change. We, through our pride and love of what we “know,” can remain comfortable and justified as we deceive ourselves into faking a relationship with God. In truth, what a proud person really has is a relationship with themselves.

I want to remain teachable. It is our duty to have a receptive heart to the Holy Spirit. It is possible to have God in your corner, the truth revealed to your mind, and still tie God’s hands with your unbelief. In fact its’ more than “possible,” it’s quite common. If you have trouble with this concept, ask yourself why Israel didn’t take the promise land the first time. Hebrews 3:12 says that God found in them and “evil heart of unbelief.” The end result was 40 years of wandering the wilderness until that generation died off, so that God could continue to work with Israel.

Let’s not rob ourselves, or God. Look at what Jesus says in John 16:13.


Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth


Notice how Jesus says “guide,” not “drag.” Evidence that God doesn’t drag people into truth exists on every street corner. We have churches that all claim the same God, yet believe about Him grossly different things. The Holy Spirit is a guide, but it is our duty to cultivate a teachable heart. Maybe you have been around the mountain, metaphorically speaking, for a couple years. Decide today that you will purpose to present your heart to God afresh. Don’t let bias and traditions rob you of an exciting life of change. On the other side of your unbelief, God is waiting.


Proverbs 11:8-12                                                                                                                      Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning. 10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. 11 For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased. 12 If thou be wise, thou shalt be wise for thyself: but if thou scornest, thou alone shalt bear it. 


 

Richard ministers regularly at Great Commission Church in Marshalltown, IA. He and his wife, Natalie, have three awesome kiddos - Joshua (6), Marshall (4), and Kaitlyn (1).

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