Living on Purpose – Wisdom and knowledge are not the same thing
Editor’s note: The News & Press had not received Bill Holland’s latest column by press time. This is a reprint of a Holland column from last year.
By Bill Holland
When it comes to having spiritual wisdom, it’s not how much we know but how much we understand.
It’s one thing to have bags of information seeds stacked up in the barn of our mind, but more importantly, how many seeds have been planted and nurtured to take root within our heart?
The devil and all of his helpers have worlds of spiritual knowledge but they do not allow it to penetrate their conscience and change who they are. Likewise, humans can also learn and accumulate information and then select what they believe because each person has been given the gift of free will.
So, when it comes to spiritual knowledge, just because we read about how to live a victorious Christian life does not mean we will automatically be converted into a victorious overcomer. We must absorb His Word through our brain and into our spirit all the while learning how to surrender our will and discipline our flesh.
Whew! These powder-puff sermons about strolling through life enjoying the overflowing storehouses of blessings are deceiving, to say the least. In reality, the true Christian life is not easy. In fact, the more serious we become the more difficult it will be. If we are genuinely born again, our spirit is connected with God’s Spirit and we have a wonderful opportunity to channel His energy into our being.
If we can prevent our old corrupt nature from talking us out of it, we can be saved from ourselves but it’s going to take a burning passion and a total commitment. Being a follower of Jesus means we are accepting a golden opportunity to transform the way we think, which will literally change who we are.
Persistence and stubbornness can be good if we can incorporate them into following Christ. Yes, being stubborn for God can be considered as faith, however, being stubborn against God is an attitude of rebellion.
He appreciates and blesses us for being persistent but when He tells us no and we still keep pushing forward, we have fallen into disobedience and rebellion. There have been times in my life when I did not know whether to stop believing or to keep proceeding. Have you ever felt that way?
I’ve had doors slammed in my face and my share of disappointment, but I kept knocking even to the point of trying to force them open with a bulldozer. To say the least, this is not always the right way to proceed.
Maybe God never intended for them to open and our demolition attitude just makes a huge mess including the misery and discouragement from resentment and confusion. To understand if the dark-side is working against us or if the Lord is directing us we need discernment, which comes from seeking God’s still small voice with all of our heart.
It’s also important to make sure we know our direction. Pray and research thoroughly before you move. If you are standing in a crossroad and not sure where to go, do something positive while you are waiting for His confirmation.
If you’ve been praying for a long time and have not heard anything, I once heard someone say, “While waiting for a door to open, praise Him in the hallway.” If you are really serious, you can declare a personal fast in order to become more spiritually sensitive.
There is no need to broadcast this on social media or tell everyone you see. By the way, fasting is not always just about food but can be the denial of other activities along with dedicating quiet time alone with Him.
When you discover all of the basic fundamentals and requirements that are associated with your goals, you may realize you are simply not ready to proceed with your goals at this time or maybe not at all.
Yes, God can move mountains but He does not put the cart before the horse or force you to cooperate. He can influence others, give you favor, and present opportunities but most of the time, it’s our diligence and perseverance that helps us to be in the position to press forward.
He is preparing a path for you behind the scenes that can utilize your strengths and will be a perfect fit for you. However, our obedience and patience are critical factors as we follow His plans and not our own.