Dec 18, 2014

Following a Manual

One of the joys of this season is putting together all of those toys, games, gifts that come with a manual. In fact it seems that almost nothing comes without a manual; whether we are assembling the item or if they already come pre-assembled.
For items that need to be assembled, the theory is that if we follow the instructions in the manual we will have success.  If people have trouble in the assembly of the item, we deduct that they must not be following the manual.
Currently, there is a TV commercial for Allstate Insurance that shows a dad building a swing set using a manual (which he is constantly referring to) that came with the kit. He says that it will take an hour; maybe an hour and a half; “Building the perfect childhood with my own two hands.”
The commercial ends with the tag: “Life can surprise you. So can an Allstate agent, by getting you a one year membership to Angie’s List – so you don’t have to DIY.”
The problem wasn’t the manual; I would submit that he hadn’t followed the instructions in the manual.
Similarly, in the Christian walk, we too have a manual; the Bible. The theory is that if we follow the instructions in the manual (the Bible), we have success.
If people are getting into trouble in their lives, we deduct that they must not be following the manual (the Bible). We think that the manual (the Bible) is a step by step instruction for us to follow as though we were putting together a model airplane.
But the truth is that we are not to simply follow the manual (the Bible), but rather we are supposed to follow Emmanuel, the God who made us! Our lives are not to be pre-assembled or pre-calculated. They are supposed to be a daily walk with the living God who longs to be and share life with us. We are supposed to follow His instructions day by day.
That is why He came to the earth, Emmanuel (or Immanuel):
“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23)
He wants us to DAILY be led by His Holy Spirit:
However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.” (John 16:13)
“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16)
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” (Romans 8:14)
 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1)
This exhortation is for you to stop trying a manual and start following Emmanuel; you will find your life having so much more meaning and purpose. Let Him assemble you into to He wants you to be!
All Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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