Lesson 3 -- fourth quarter 1992
September 20, 1992
© Copyright 1992, Christian Light Publications
"Wait!" How tired some youth must get of hearing that little piece of advice. Youth is a time of action and bold initiative. Youth are dreamers and visionaries. Youth with a mission is youth on the move. To zealous youth, inactivity is synonymous with unfaithfulness.
So you have caught the vision of God's work for you. Perhaps it is even more than that; maybe you have already received His call in a most unmistakable and indisputable fashion. Great! You are now in the pre-launch phase with a purpose to give direction and meaning to your preparations. Many youth have launched at this stage, mistaking a call to service as a call to immediate action. The result is youth that are all wet (sunk and useless because they sailed in a ship not yet seaworthy) or adrift (knowing where they are supposed to go but unable to get there because they sailed in a rudderless ship) or becalmed (they got the ship down the quays by gravity, "sailed" by sheer inertia, then discovered they had no engine). As you can obviously see, destination does not equal preparation. Neither does vision equal equipping.
Joshua, David, and Joseph all knew that leadership awaited them... even before they were given charge. Yet they awaited God's timing. And their waiting was most certainly not a time of inactivity. They all did a lot of learning and preparing through service and subjection. First, God called them. Next, He tested and prepared them. Finally, He commissioned them and used them magnificently. Imagine the outcome of their lives and ministry had they said, "OK, you spiritual deadbeats! God has given me a vision of what He is going to do with me to bless all of us. In fact, He has already told me I am to save all our skins and lead us into greatness. So stand back because here I come!"
So you have caught the vision and received the call. Praise God! Now learn to serve. Expose yourself to related literature. Get training that could be useful when it is time to fulfill that call. Get involved with those already functioning in the capacity to which you are called.
Oh, you think I missed something? Not at all! When Joshua was finally given his charge, he was also given some very pivotal instructions, the fulfillment of which would insure his success. I really doubt if that was the first time he was told that; I'm rather disposed to think it was more a reminder. Don't by-pass God! Never neglect the Scriptures and prayer. The success of your mission will depend on your faithfulness to God's Word. Of course, you already know this doesn't mean perfunctory, half-asleep, half-distracted reading or scanning!
How important your waiting time is! Serving. Training. Praying. Reading the Bible. Meditating. As vital as these are during and after the waiting process, they are all superseded by obeying. Review the precursors to Joshua's success: "observe to do according to all the law...that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest...observe to do according to all that is written therein...then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success."
Review your life right now. Are you tolerating "minor" unfaithfulness? Or are you living true to the Scriptures? Faithfulness at every stage of your life. Make no mistake. Entertain no doubt. Allow no exception. This is of paramount importance. Fail here and you will fail in your call.
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