Saying “No” to Good Things

1 Kings 8:17-19
It was in the desire of my father, David to build a temple for the name of Yahweh, the God of Israel. But the Lord said  to my father David, “Since it was your desire to build a temple for My Name, you have done well to have this desire. Yet you are not the one to build it, instead your son, your own offspring will build it for my name.

Sometimes we can have good desires or good intentions like David did here and God still stops you. That can be really hard to understand. Why wouldn’t that be what I should do? It‘s a good thing!

I’ve had this happen. Many years ago missionaries that we supported came to our church and shared a need to have house parents for the boarding school where missionary children in the country sent their children.  In Africa. This struck such a chord in me – we could do that! Even though they talked about having guards to keep them safe and I had three boys all elementary aged – I was ready! Send me! Philip was not on board with this as it would take us away from our families for three years but I was ready!

I remember very clearly being in our backyard, mowing the grass and talking to God about this. “God, I’m ready and willing to go to Africa for you.” And just as clearly, I heard him say, “But I’m not asking you to.” I was stunned. What? Didn’t I feel a very clear call to Africa back when I was young and I said, “uh uh.” I’m ready now!

A few short months later our middle son, Aaron, was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. It was a scary time of hospital stays, learning blood sugars, counting carbs and keeping him alive.

At some point in that journey, it hit me, we could’ve been in Africa! If I had pushed for my way or ignored God’s voice that afternoon because I was sure my plan was a good plan – life would’ve looked much different.

We don’t always get an answer that clearly as to why God said no to a good plan but we can trust he knows what he’s doing. And if he says no, it’s not for you. Maybe if you insist on it, you are robbing someone else that God had in mind for that very thing.

Somewhere in Custer State Park

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