Here are some of today’s key takeaways:
- We should trust God and choose to follow him even if the outcome isn’t what we expect.
About a week ago, the Gladney Center for Adoption held a series of Christmas events in Fort Worth, Texas. Since I do a lot of work for the Gladney Center for Adoption they had invited me to a couple of their Christmas parties and events. I also sold them my Adoption.com business and as I still run the Adoption.com team there, I invited many members of the team to come to Six Flags and the zoo together.
About three weeks before the events, we were going to purchase plane tickets and something didn’t feel right. Have you ever had a spiritual impression that you should not do something? I had one of those about this trip. I had a spiritual impression that I should not go. I felt that feeling so strong that I even contacted the HR manager of Adoption.com and told her not to buy my plane ticket.
After about a week of thinking about it, I became worried about what the people at Gladney were going to think if I didn’t show up to these Christmas parties that they so graciously invited me to. I started thinking of these logical reasons why it still would be okay for me to go and ultimately, I am ashamed to admit this, I bought the tickets and I went to Fort Worth for the Christmas parties.
The Christmas parties were wonderful and it was so good to work with the Gladney team. I really enjoyed it. But, at the events was COVID-19.
I came back on a Saturday and wasn’t feeling well. On Sunday, I took a COVID-19 test but it came back negative. However, my symptoms kept getting worse for a couple of days and on Tuesday, they were bad enough, I went into urgent care. I assumed I had bronchitis. In fact, in two of the most recent episodes I recorded, I told you that I thought I had bronchitis. But after I recorded those episodes, I went into urgent care and I tested positive for COVID-19.
Since then, I have been quarantined upstairs in my house for about a week. Some people go through for COVID-19 asymptomatic but that has not been my experience. This COVID-19 experience has kind of kicked my butt a little bit. I did get the vaccine and I am very grateful that this COVID-19 experience has been as mild as it has been. I know a lot of people have had it much worse than me. My father-in-law passed away less than a month ago from COVID-19. I know we’ve lost a lot of really good people because of it and I’m very grateful I’m not there.
A day or two after I tested positive for COVID-19, as I was in my quarantine, I made the connection that God had given me a prompting. God had told me to not go to Fort Worth and I assumed I knew why He was telling me not to go. I rationalized it away and I used logic and decided to go anyway. Now, I think the reason why He was telling me not to go to Fort Worth had nothing to do with the reasons I had assumed, but because of COVID-19.
After two years of not getting COVID-19 through this pandemic, I had a chance to avoid it again. I was told not to go, but I went there anyway in disobedience. And now I am dealing with the consequences of it. From this experience I learned the true meaning of faith. Faith is trusting in God and listening to his promptings, even if we don’t like what he is asking us to do.
A few nights ago when I came to that realization in my quarantine, I called my wife and told her what happened. I committed to her and myself that when I receive a prompting, and I know what I’m supposed to do, I will follow it no matter what.
Listening to God and Obeying His Promptings
This experience reminded me of the story of Jonah and how he received the inspiration that he needed to go teach the people in Nineveh. However, he didn’t follow that prompting and he had to deal with the consequences of it there in the belly of the whale.
It also reminds me of the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego who didn’t make the mistake that I made. They were told by the King of Babylon to bow down to his image. However, they refused. The consequences of not bowing to the king was that they would be cast into a fiery furnace and burned alive.
They responded in Daniel 3:17–18 with, “If it be so [if you cast us into the furnace], our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand… But if not, … we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”
Essentially, they’re saying, “When God speaks, we will follow. We trust that God will deliver us, but if not, we’re still going to obey him.” They were still committed to follow God. I need to have that kind of resolve inside of me. When I know I’m supposed to do something or not supposed to do something, I shouldn’t worry about what other people are going to think. I need to do it anyway. I need to trust that God will take care of me, but if not, I’m still going to follow him.
Let’s commit that when we know what God wants us to do, we are going to follow it. Let’s trust God and choose to follow him even if the outcome isn’t what we expect. Let’s have true faith.