Saturday, 7 January 2012

Where Do You Want Me To Go Today?

“Where do you want to go today”, asked the Microsoft© advertisement in the mid 90s.

I remember I was strolling in New York mid-morning where I saw the blitz in the computer store near 5th avenue and was so consumed that I vowed to upgrade my older system as soon as I got back to Singapore where I was residing. Come to think of it, nothing needed to be fixed with my current setup and I was rather satisfied with the 14Kbps dial up offered by SingTel then too. It was just so alluring that I just wanted it.

Today, I am driven by a different want. But it’s not what I want, but what the God who made me wants. At an age where life is set on auto cruise towards retirement whilst avoiding road blocks, icebergs, turbulence and other nasties, I chose the path that was designed for me in my mother’s womb. It essentially means reformatting your OS to the Holy Spirit’s OS . Remember, our Father in Heaven has a path He has set aside for each and every individual from the very roots of one’s ancestors to the day the world ceases to exist. In taking that route, one will face many adversities and challenges, bringing that person to the very breaking point. Many will disagree when I say that we are all equipped to face such challenges. Looking back at the incident in the Garden of Eden, God created man and blessed them and said all His creation was good. He gave a distinct instruction to man to be rulers over the entire creation. Adam being the first human created was bestowed with the leadership mantle but chose to lay it aside and blamed Eve for his bad judgement. In Eden, God dwelt with the both of them but it was the man whom God ratified as the spokesperson and head of the family. Adam took the easy way out of indulging in the weaker vessel’s whims rather than arresting the waywardness. It was no easy task being the head; a God-given right now often mistaken for a privilege. Men, who are still the heads of their family, today dump that role lazily to their wives and point the finger at her for every fault from his loft.

When He sent His Son to topple the grip of sin over man, Jesus didn’t just do that alone. He followed up with the action of dispatching a Helper, the Holy Spirit. But nowhere in the scriptures did it mention that the Holy Spirit would linger for a short time and depart. To this date, the Helper our Father has given to us is very much the “still small voice” that is very much prevalent and the same one Elijah heard when he was in refuge from Jezebel.

If that “still small voice” or the Holy Spirit or the Helper is very much in our midst, why do we begin each day focused on our goals, KPIs and dreams when the work of our Father remains undone. That is why the arrival of our Father’s Kingdom is sluggish because men and women offer their hands and hearts to God at their retirement age where the flesh and soul is weary. Those who actively do the bidding of our Maker set up ministry of this and that, rarely enquiring of God if their ministry is on the right track or if they should just drop everything. God would rather have ministries closed to ensure parents spend time with their own children rather than their congregation’s children. What a terrible situation to be when leaders of a church neglect their very own flesh and blood and spend time doing charities elsewhere.

In this ever connected civilization we live in, we are all but connected to the God who gave us the true Cloud Computing! His storage space is immensely vast than any media combined from every since and to the next billionth Terabyte storage combined. No fee, no contracts, no restrictions and available all over the Earth with absolutely no roaming or hidden charges. It’s free! But we rather pay for a tangible and be tied down with ridiculous contracts don’t we? The ancients fully understood the need to be plugged into the Spirit as the Helper lights their paths and makes their way straight though mountains lay before them; even soar like an eagle as it were, just to overcome the problem.

Letting the Helper manage one’s life in realigning to the will of the Father as per His promise to enrich our lives, is a personal and custom made journey every individual should embark upon. Many may recall the rudimentary task of writing during the early days of childhood. One needs to see what it is that one should write and copy it. Often, templates are provided to trace the lines of alphabets and number before the child can write by rote memory onto a piece of paper. Soon and over time, cursive writing may be learnt to exhibit higher levels of writing mastery. So it is with the Holy Spirit. Little by little, we are led to move into the template God has laid upon our lives and trace our steps before we display the very nature of God in our lives. It is rare to hear anyone today say, “I attained all my success by seeking the will of God”. Rather, man attribute the success to their heritage, education, opportunities, hind and foresight but no mention of the One who is the sole source of man’s prosperity in all facet of his life as per His blessings at the dawn of creation.

The Holy Spirit, that “still small voice” or Helper; whichever one chooses to refer to, is not confined to the realms of the believer’s alone. Our God has sent Jesus to mankind at large, that everyone should gain salvation and not suffer eternal death of their soul. His sacrifice freed all man and that is valid to the seven billion plus inhabitants today as well. If only man tried for once to stop all activities and shut off all noise and distractions around him and just listened.

Like every learning experience, the student must pay attention to the teacher. As time goes by, first day of school experience will soon wear off and the senses now tuned to the lesson, heightened. It may seem hard but in reality it is dual in nature. Unlearning the corrupt worldly ways while immersing one’s self into the will of the Father through the Holy Spirit. It will become second nature rather quickly. That is why Apostle Paul admitted that he could do all things with Christ within him. How blessed and wise this man who once sought to destroy the faithful, now leading them into the salvation Jesus guaranteed through His resurrection.

As a personal experience, it was typically difficult to let Him lead in every facet of my life. I started small; what to wear, which route to take or which particular restaurant to dine in. As I practised, I sought confirmation from like minded, spiritually led friends. Soon I leant to discern what His voice sounded like versus the inner desires of the spirit man. Next phase was to wait for the computer to boot up fully while at the same time asking my Helper to prioritize what’s to be done even though the all email screamed for attention and action. Very soon, I graduated to what to speak and to whom. From that point on, my day isn’t complete without asking my Father to order my steps according to His plan, completely engulfing my flesh-led desires. I did many weird things like changing my hair style as I had combed it in the usual conservative business like fashion. One day, through my close friend, the Holy Spirit led me to comb my hair back and almost sporting a spiky look. I shivered and cringed for the longest time before I agreed to do it. Upon reaching the office, I ran to the toilet and locked myself in it while I saw the very un-business like mop I had on my head. After wiping the tear of fear, I put on my brave face and walked into my office areas. I could not recall how many comments I got that day and 98% of them were positive. Two months on, I still got smiles, kind words and support. I have been living with a case of low self esteem and was a bit of a traditionalist when it came to my very person. All that changed when He who made me, changed me!

Along with my better half, every selfish ambition, goals and dreams we had, we have left it at His feet the He may jump start His best intentions for us according to His plans laid out during our embryonic life. We have had many, many pleasant and wonderful surprises because as we were led to do His work, we were granted the very aspirations we have forgone in the first place. That is the unfathomable brilliance of God who sees the heart and rewards ever so swiftly! We always seek confirmation in all our affairs and we recommend this new way of life to you. With every new thing, take small, slow steps before running because when you start to run, it very difficult to stop and consider that fact that you have very little time to make error corrections. So again, crawl, walk, gambol if you like, and then run if you need.

What Do You Want Me To Do Today, Father?