Friday, October 7, 2016

God's Nonuse

Last evening while reading Robert Mulholland’s book Shaped by the Word: The Power of Scripture in Spiritual Formation I was struck by his statement, “We simply offer it (our spiritual discipline–Bible reading, prayer, service, church attendance, silence, missions, etc.) for God’s use or nonuse.”

In this section of the book he is explaining that for a spiritual discipline to truly be a spiritual discipline requires our “unconditional release of the discipline to God…  We offer (it) up to God for God’s use or nonuse.”

The Holy Spirit spoke so powerfully into my heart through these words that I had to put the book down and walk outside to ponder them for a while.  

Can I truly be satisfied to offer all of my actions and activities, my very life to God for his nonuse?  Can I devote my life to prayer for and among the unreached for God’s use or nonuse?  Can I continue to write and share these things the Holy Spirit reveals to me for God’s use or nonuse?

Hebrews 11:1 tells us, “Now faith is the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen.”  Then the author of Hebrews continues with a litany of Old Testament saints and their lives of faith.  He concludes with, “All these were approved through their faith, but they did not receive what was promised…”  They continued in their spiritual disciplines for decades, some even for centuries, without receiving what was promised, without knowing what God would do.

They simply offered their spiritual disciplines, their faith, their very lives to God for his use or nonuse.

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