Have you ever find yourself trying to assemble something you bought – whether is a construction toy, furniture set, or gadget?
I must confess, it is not a delightful thing for me to do. Reading instructions, following the manual follow step by step to assembly anything at all that I have purchase? It is not a fun thing for me at all. I find myself at times, scanning through the pictures, thinking, I’ve got it! ‘I can sort this out! Only to reach half way then realise, I can’t.
A typical example is when we bought a new barbeque set and my husband wasn’t at home. I threw myself the challenge of putting everything together myself. It was very frustrating trying to fit the different bolts and nuts into the right places. I just couldn’t!
What is a manual?
Essentially, an instruction manual is a book or booklet giving detailed information about how something should be done or operated. The instructions can explain how to put together a barbeque set; operate a blender; washing machine, children’s toy and so on.
It is basically, the communication provided by someone who knows how a project should be done or how to assemble a product to someone who needs to know how to do it.
So what is the purpose of a manual?
Why will the manufactures bother to put one in every product they make? It is to help you figure how to put the product together.
For so many people, referring to the manual is thought of as a last resort. That is how many of us behave. Instead of going to the one who holds the instruction manual to our life consistently, we refer to Him (God) as a last resort or forget sometimes.
After giving birth to my first child, my perspective on things and life began to change for the good especially after the having my second born. When it was time to go back to work full time after maternity, I felt the Lord wanted me to stay home a bit longer and seek Him.
His promise to me was – I will provide. Initially, it was not a struggle at all as I knew God had something planned for me. God had some things to show and say to me and the full picture could only be revealed by me intentionally and consistently seeking Him in my closet without any form of distraction.
That season of being at home, looking after my children was amazing! I found joy whiles I worked on the things God had committed into my hands.
I began to build on ideas He had given. Every now and then, I will ask, “God is it yet time to go back”?
The question I want to ask is DO YOU EVER PAUSE AND ASK – LORD, WHERE AM I ? Am I still on course concerning that project you asked me to undertake? Do you get so busy with life and its cares that you don’t have time to pause and check if you are to change direction? You can be frustrated at times if you do not ask.
I have learnt the importance of asking God this question – This new job you’ve given me; how long should I work for the company?
- Do I continue to stay here so far as am being paid?
- Is there a purpose for me being here?
- Do I stay in the job even if I am not happy?
- Or what is your ultimate goal for me?
When the season comes to leave, could you speak to me or give me a signal? This will help eliminate any pain and disappointments. Remember, God holds the instruction manual to your life.
Like Joshua, the Israelites and battle of Ai. The Lord had told Joshua, in Joshua 1: 5 “There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee”.
It wasn’t until they lost the battle of Ai. Although Ai was a small country in comparison to the many countries Israel had defeated. ‘We don’t need to send all our army’ they thought. Joshua forgot to ask God – the one who has always been leading him in all the battles and given him victory. During the battle, Ai smote about thirty-six men and chased them. Therefore the hearts of the people melted, and became as water. Joshua 7: 5
After the defeat, Joshua rented his clothes, put dust upon his head and fell to the earth upon his face before the ark of the Lord from morning till evening. (Joshua 7:6)
Joshua 7:11 says “Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff.
That led to the whole nation of Israel repenting and sanctifying themselves. Achan who stole the accursed thing was later stoned with his family. God then gave them victory the second time around with Ai and the neighbouring countries. Why? Because Joshua enquired from the Lord and He led them to victory.
Let me ask you this question again. Who is in control of your life? Are you so busy that you don’t have time to ask the Lord where you are at with your walk with Him?
Are you so busy with ‘church’ and ‘church programs’ that you don’t have time to spend with God or check that bit in your life that need fixing? Are you so busy with work that you are not even aware which season of your life you are in?
It is time to PAUSE ! STOP and go to the manufacturer and ask Him to check you out; reveal the missing parts and fix them for you.
Let me surprise you. God is interested in even the smallest decision you make in your life.
He will show you the way so you don’t miss anything at every stage of your life. Seek the Lord in prayer and fasting! He will bring you back on track. Things will begin to function well for you again. You will begin to hear His voice and His clear instructions again. It is beautiful when you do.
Written by: Lydia Riley
Photo courtesy: ©Kelly Sikkema/Unsplash