In the midst of the Christmas season, teachings about the wise men who followed a star to worship Jesus in the manger are everywhere. Last year, our pastor shared about the obstacles that the wise men faced as they attempted to reach the newborn King in His humble accommodation. As I listened to him teach, I couldn't help but think: the wise men faced a difficult journey of distance, persecution, difficult terrain, and to be sure they didn't have a Garmin, but they still managed to find Him and to bring Him their gifts. Why then, does it seem so hard for us to find time in our lives for Jesus?
What is it that is so difficult about our journey?
#1 Distraction. Many people claim they can't hear the voice of God or perceive the leading of the Holy Spirit. Well, could it be that there is so much constant background noise and distraction that you wouldn't notice if the Holy Spirit was at the foot of your bed waving a red flag? Maybe it's time to cut something out or turn something down.
#2 Fear. If I truly seek the face of God in the midst of my mess does that mean I'll have to change? Or perhaps does it mean I'll have to do something differently to achieve a different result? It means that I might have to admit that no, I don't have it all figured out and no, it doesn't all fit into the master plan I've laid out for my life. Many are fearful of admitting they don't have it all together.
#3 Confusion. Now, this may be the book of Scott, chapter 7, verse 5, but I have to believe that in their long, arduous journey, the wise men must have reached a point of confusion along the way once or twice. Even with all the modern technology at my disposal, I can still find myself confused about which way to go. The key in that situation is simple: STOP. If you're confused about your direction or which direction to go and don't come to a stop and get your bearings you could continue in the wrong direction!
#4 Laziness. Ouch. Yes, I said it, but only because I suffer from it myself from time to time. As a matter of fact, I didn't really feel like writing this post! Until I sat down, prayed for direction and started to write. The easiest way to defeat an opponent is to convince them that it's not worth their time or effort to even compete. If you stay on the sidelines, you're not a threat. The enemy knows this.
#5 Complacency. I believe the greatest obstacle to seeking Jesus as Lord of our lives is complacency. The belief that we can stop seeking Him because we've already arrived or that we've arrived at a place of comfort in our walk with Him.
The reality is that the wise men reached Jesus in what would be considered an almost impossible journey today because they were intentional. They knew the obstacles, the stumbling blocks and the distractions the enemy would throw in front of them and they kept their gaze focused. They focused on the One who could bring them to their destination. They focused on the One who would ultimately bring them home- Jesus.
What's getting in your way in your relationship with Jesus and your spouse?
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