Sometimes, even now, I think I can work out the answers to life’s simplest problems without any help, only to confuse the situation more. More importantly, there are still times when I’m sure I’m looking for all of the right things in all the right places, only to realize I’m wrong on both counts — wrong thing, wrong place.

I tend to act every now and then without consciously understanding that God has worked all of this out, without needing any input from me. As I’ve said and written many times, this fight is fixed and we win.

There was a time when I thought there must be something I’m not getting because the more I searched for the meaning of my own salvation, the more lost I became. You see, I now know it’s really easy to fool yourself when you’re arrogant enough to think you have all the answers, or you’re capable of getting out of any situation using your own devices. Because of an enlightening Sunday service, I can tell you unequivocally that I am not the primary source of knowing why things unfold the way they do and neither are you.

Spiritually speaking, my mistake has been to think that somehow, I would one day, through my own volition, discover the best way to serve God. My “calling,” my life’s work, would become clear because after all I was actively searching to get to what I was supposed to be doing with the gifts the Lord had given me.

Wrong! That’s not letting go and letting God. That’s holding on and giving yourself way too much credit. The message during service was so simple that I can honestly say it was God’s way of giving me insight into His destiny for me via a sermon about independence.

I clearly understand that I cannot accomplish anything without acknowledging Christ first. I really do realize I don’t function well outside of the boundaries of faith and a belief in Jesus’ intercession on my behalf.

For me, that means getting as close as I can to wallowing in the Word of God via prayer, Bible study, meditation or whatever you want to call it. I exist because He exists. In this regard, my calling, my vocation is to receive, listen, accept and obey.

Scripture says lean not on my own understanding but seek God always. If I do that, I’ll find what I need to know. So where He is, I’ll try to be. Personally, I am now convicted that my job is to accept what is shown to me. I cannot speak for you but for me I need quiet time in the Word.

My prayers have become requests for the Lord to allow me to fulfill His destiny for me, whatever that might be. I’m convinced that He has so much more for me than I could ever imagine. I believe it’s Deuteronomy that says when all else fails, return to God and obey Him. He will be merciful.

Now I know finding God in the context of man’s understanding can seem impossible. Listening to Him is tough because the world is constantly after your attention. But the simple truth is God so loves me that He sent his son so that I might live eternally. There is really not much more to it than that.

My job then becomes clear. Seek Him out and don’t worry about the rest. Let go and let God. This column may seem a little more narrative than usual, but I’m declaring what works for me, deliberate and regular reaching out. That act alone guides my thoughts and, in many ways, determines my behavior, or at least it should. As long as you realize you can’t figure it out by yourself, then you don’t have to try to anymore.

May God bless and keep you always.

James A. Washington is the publisher at Dallas Weekly. He can be reached at dallasweekly.com.

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