I believe that when God “speaks” to us that he does it through verses that we come across, songs, sermons, Bible Study, friends, a thought that comes out of no where in our heads, and random events. In the past month or so the below verse has been coming to me again and again. Proverbs 3:5-6:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding,
in all your ways acknowledge Him, (seek his will in all you do),
and he will make your path straight, (he will direct your path).
It’s a popular verse and one that people refer to often which is probably why it comes to me often. But I decided to “verse map” it a couple of weeks ago. Verse mapping, I learned during my first online bible study, is when you dig deeper in to the verse and look up words, look the verse up in several versions of the Bible and analyze the meaning. So I decided to try it with Proverbs 3:5-6. I also think it is helpful to pick out any action words in a verse and determine if they are actions I should take or actions that God promises to perform. In this case, my job is to trust, lean and acknowledge and it’s God’s job to direct.
We all have a good understanding of what trusting and leaning on something looks like but what does it mean to acknowledge something. Acknowledge according to the definition means to admit, agree, thank or appreciate, or to know and recognize. That still didn’t clear up for me how to acknowledge Him in all my ways. So I looked it up in a couple of versions of the Bible and found a line that was clearer to me, “seek his will in all you do”. This got me thinking – What is it that God wants? We think about what we want. Many of us have been told what God doesn’t want us to do throughout our lives. But what is it that God wants? Then the thought came that what does any parent want? Love, a relationship with their child, devotion, appreciation. What does the Bible say God wants? Our reliance on him, obedience, praise, thankfulness from us and us to share our faith with others.
Okay, trust God not my own understanding. Fine. He knows WAY more than I do anyway. Got that. Try to focus on what God wants. Will do. But then something kept popping out at me.
Our memory verse in Bible Study last week:
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. – Deut. 6:5
Then yesterday this verse came to me from a different source:
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. – Jeremiah 29:13
And I saw it. I had skipped it in the first verse because what does it even mean really. But with the second and then third verse I had to stop today and ask “Ok God, you want ALL OF MY HEART but what does that mean?” …