My hands are covered in grease, the chain on my old road bike keeps slipping, training rides are a party with gears that only change when they feel like it, my fingertips are raw trying to wrestle with another punctured inner tube, my butt is killing me, …
Whose brilliant idea was it to cycle for Bibles?
Oh wait … it was God! Oooops!
How can I say its God’s idea? Good question, and one I struggled with at first.
Think about God, and who He is. What is God’s character?
God is love. His Word speaks love and He will never give you an idea that is unloving or one that goes against His Word. Ask Him if you’re not sure and listen for His answer. He may use other people or a passage of scripture to speak to you. We all hear God in different ways. He may even speak to us in so-called ‘light bulb’ moments – moments of intense clarity and enlightenment. Cross Africa was confirmed for me in scripture; Matthew 4:4, to be exact, where Jesus recalls scripture from the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy in answer to Satan’s temptation. He said, and I quote, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God’. We will be cycling through some of the poorest countries in the world where people struggle to put food on the table, and all we have to give is the Word. I couldn’t help but question this seemingly counter intuitive act, that is until God gave me His answer in Matthew 4:4.
Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He is the manifestation of the Word. Hence the Word brings Life, and by spreading the Word (the Great Commission) we become more like Christ – pure, peace loving, sincere people, filled with mercy and considerate of others. We are called to be more like Christ in everything we do, so if the idea we have helps us fulfill this calling, more than likely, its from God.
God created us in His image. We have emotions because God has emotions. God can feel sad, happy, excited, … Ideas excite us too, and when we’re excited we just want to share, share, share … am I right? If you’re hesitant to share your idea with fellow believers, you should ask yourself why? Is there something about it that just doesn’t seem right? When things are to good to be true, they usually are. Just like that, things that just don’t feel right, are usually not right. God will never tell you to do something wrong, so if you’re hesitating, then your idea is probably not from God.
As much as God created us in His image, so He created us to be unique; with a unique personality, set of gifts and abilities, a unique heart. God’s ideas speak to our hearts, to the most intimate part of who we are, that part He knows better than we ourselves often do. Ignoring God will create tension. Pressure builds when we delay obedience. We’re often so caught up in ourselves we don’t realize that doing nothing means just that … nothing. To quote Rick Warren, ‘Delayed obedience is disobedience.’ When God convicts our hearts He wants to correct us, develop us, form us into the people we were meant to be. As soon as we say ‘yes’ all the tension fades, the pressure breaks and is replaced by God’s peace – a peace that passes understanding. Do you sense God’s peace about your idea? As soon as I stopped finding excuses as to why I couldn’t possibly initiate something like Cross Africa, and just said ‘yes God’, simply surrendered, the peace came.
This is how I know that God wants me to get grease on my hands, learn to fix flats, change tyres, fiddle with gears and chains, oh and endure a sore bum …