The Graduates Way is to Trust and Obey!
Wednesday, May, 21, 2014 | 12:00 AM | by asmith
From the womb to the tomb, life is a series of graduations. Last week our last child, Alex, crossed the finish line of Samford University and received her diploma. Alex and countless other grads listened to speakers offer advice about their accomplishments and future opportunities. One observer noted, “Commencement speakers tell hundreds of graduates dressed in IDENTICAL caps and gowns that the key to success is INDIVIDUALITY!” In reality, the true key to success is CONFORMITY to God’s Word, Will, and Way.
Wise Solomon addresses all graduates on authentic success by instructing, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.” (Proverbs 3:5-6) God prescribes activating three core values for success: Faith, Humility, and Consistency.
FAITH constitutes God’s invitation to move beyond trusting yourself into trusting your Creator. The Compass of God’s Word explains, “Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Without faith it is impossible to please God. By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.” (Hebrews 11:1-8) True faith is pictured in going to the airport and trusting yourself to the pilot and plane. God says trust Me and follow Me by faith into a fulfilling future.
HUMILITY links to “lean not on your own understanding.” To follow God’s way you must set aside your natural arrogance and admit that your understanding is generally incomplete, incorrect and in contradiction to God’s Way of love, purity and serving. Jesus modeled humility: “Have this attitude in you which was in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God humbly emptied Himself and became a servant.” (Philippians 2:5-7) Humility moves you beyond being an arrogant “know-it-all” and into the realm of being coachable.
CONSISTENCY is prescribed when God tells us “in ALL your ways acknowledge Him.” Refuse to separate your faith in God from your daily attitudes and actions. Integrate Jesus into ALL that you do. Replace duplicity and hypocrisy with Christ-exalting consistency. “Whatever you do in word or deed, do ALL in the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Colossians 3:17)
The famed Missionary, Elizabeth Elliot, wisely taught that “the entire Christian Life is summed in the hymn, Trust and Obey: When you walk with the Lord in the light of His Word, what a glory He shed on your way, When you do His good will, He abides with you still and with all who will TRUST and OBEY!”