Initiative and Intent

The same message given to Moses applies to you and me as well. It is so tempting to cling to our sufficiency and competency, depending upon our own resources instead of the Lord. Independence is not a virtue, although it is frequently elevated to noble status. In the spiritual realm, independence is sin and dependence upon Christ is godly. As C.S. Lewis wrote, “The thing is to rely only on God.”

Six times Jesus uses the phrase, “my own initiative,” to reference His will, authority, and option to make His own decisions. In five of the six instances, He declares dependence upon His Father over His own initiative.

The lone reference to Him exerting His own will comes in John 10:18 as He takes the initiative to lay down His life in obedience to His Father. While Jesus was the strongest willed man to ever set foot on the planet, He was also the most dependent.

You see, it was Moses’ dependence upon the Lord that gave him strength. It was Christ’s dependence upon His Father that created the power He demonstrated.

God never intended for us to live the Christian life for Him. After all, it isn’t our life; it is Christ’s, and God’s intention is for us to depend upon Christ to live His life through us.

I’m quite sure it was monumentally difficult for Moses to throw his rod down. And, I can’t even begin to grasp what it meant for Christ to hang the use of His divine power on the coat rack as He left heaven.

The difficulty of following suit is intimidating, but the power and testimony of their lives remains unquestionable. Besides, the Powerful One dwells within us and seeks God’s will, not His own initiative (Jn. 16:13).

The same challenge is issued to us every moment of each day. Throw your self-sufficiency down. Lean heavily on your Father and hold your resources lightly.

They’ll bite you know.