Total Dependency

My parents recently had dinner at a restaurant in Boston. They love a night out in the big city (the greatest city.) Boston is only about an hour from where I grew up in New Hampshire. They went to the tavern that Paul Revere visited that famous night when the British were coming. Recently they went to the Long Wharf restaurant and saw person after person taking pictures by a door. They asked the waiter what was up with the door and he told them, “After the Declaration of Independence was signed they needed some place to hide it. So John Hancock temporarily stored it in his safe. That is the door to the safe that temporarily held the Declaration of Independence.” Boston is rich in history, don’t mess with us we love our freedom! 


Dependency is not very American. We love our independence. We do not want to have to depend on anything from anyone. In fact, many of would go (or have gone) to arms to protect our independence. So when I say, dependency is the way out of complacency, it goes against every fiber in our bodies. Let’s be honest, lay down my rights? Submit to something besides myself? This will not come naturally to us. In previous blogs Life’s a Lot and Assessing the Situation we unpacked complacency and the impact it has on our lives. Here we want to look at dependency and why I believe this will grow us out of a place of complacency. 


Read Proverbs 3:5-6 with me: 


Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.


For a short little video about this verse check this out on YouTube. In God’s kingdom, He is the King. He is a king that wants to be trusted. He is a king that can be trusted. Every politician I know is meme’d to death with distrust. Either side of the aisle is creating memes to build distrust for the other side and trust for “our side.” In God’s kingdom, He is the King we can trust and should trust. The clarifying before “your heart” is so critical. I think it speaks into why we are facing a season of complacency. We have substituted the word “all” with “some.” In a season of complacency, is this more of the reality of our lives? “Trust in the Lord with some of your heart, from time to time leaning on your own understanding.” When we say Lean In, we are saying lean on God. Lean away from ourselves and lean into our relationship with God. 


If we want to grow out of complacency and towards dependency here are three things we must do: 


Abound in Love for Jesus: When I read trust in the Lord with all of your heart, to me it sounds a lot like love. I think of my wife Ava. It is hard to trust someone you do not love. It is nearly impossible to completely trust someone you do not love. On Feburary 14th, 2018, Simon Sinek tweeted, “My favorite definition of love is giving someone the power to destroy you and trusting they won’t use it.” I kind of love this definition. Is it perfect? No. Complete? No. But does it get at the correlation between love and trust? Most definitely. The best way to grow in trust for our King Jesus is to fall deeply in love with Him. Read through the Gospel of John or read No Greater Love by A.W. Tozer. 


Grow in our Knowledge of God: In some of our ways are we to acknowledge God? No. In all of our ways we are to acknowledge Him. It is hard to acknowledge someone you do not understand. It’s hard to understand someone you do not know. If I am not leaning on my own understanding, I must lean on my understanding of God. It is possible to grow in knowledge of someone and have it grow a sense of distrust. There are politicians I have voted for, trusted within reason, found out some stuff, and no longer trust them. You too? In my marriage, I have grown in knowledge of my wife and in a healthy relationship, it has grown my trust for her. I am certain, the God I know to be true is trustworthy. I know that as you grow in an understanding of who He is, you will grow in your trust of Him. Books that I think would help you in this pursuit are Attributes of God by Arthur Pink, Knowing God by J.I. Packer and The Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer.  


Eliminate self-reliance in our lives: There is no way around this one, ya know? You can’t fully lean into your understanding of God and allow Him to make your paths straight if you are trying to do your own thing. My kids can’t tell me they trust me while they go against what I have said. It is counterintuitive, no? Your full trust for someone is seen in your actions. You actions, all of them, display who you are reliant upon. Do you rely on self, God or something else? What makes you feel secure? Jesus plus? What is the plus? If we are to depend on God, and if God is truly God, then we can fully depend on Him. Are you the fix for your family? Are you the fix for your job? Are you the fix for your friendship? Are you the fix in your church? Are you the fix in your finances? You will need to act or stop acting sure. You are PART of the fix. But that is it, part. Your part in all those areas, where you are temped to be reliant upon yourself, is to worship God. In all areas that test your self-reliance, seek to worship, love, and trust Jesus. Let Him guide your steps. Two blogs that could help you with this are Relying God isn’t a Mind Game and 3 Practical Ways to Depend on God More


This last point is what we will dig into more next week. Until then, keep reading, keep growing, keeping loving, and keep praying for one. 


The day is soon when we, the passionate followers of Jesus, will be on the forefront of building passionate churches. The day is coming. Let’s go! 


Pastor Jason