Feel like you are just watching others get all the applause?
Or that you aren’t really a member of the team- that they can go to the championship without you?
Often when we feel “sidelined” one of two things are happening:
1. A deep work is taking place within us that will be a stronger foundation in us to shoulder what is to come ( without this, His “burden” is too heavy for us!)
2. Preparations in another field are being made for us. That is, the work He has done in us is going to be laid upon a foundation that is still in process.
Either way, understand that the foundation is what is most important, and when you look at a house you don’t see the foundation, but you sure can see what it holds up!
In the process, after The Architect’s plans are approved and agreed upon, some deep digging must be done . That takes time and requires cooperation of the “climate”. Large stones and cumbersome tree roots must be removed. The soil must be not too dry and not too wet. There must be a balance.
Before the builders even arrive, the foundation is mapped out and poured/laid; a series of steps which involve minute details, specific materials, and exact placement of those materials so that they interact properly with each other . None of the months of work completed so far will be seen. Yet it is vital. Without that foundation a house cannot stand firm.
Maybe your calling is to be a foundation, or a builder instead of a show house? Hubster and I know that ours is. The work we do is not often visible, but without it the glory and the beauty of God’s plan will not remain. Nobody wants a house that shifts or falls when the wind blows. Consider how important your “unseen” work is. In truth it really is seen. It may be revealed in the lives of others; in generations to come, or through a Kingdom work that finds the healthy soil that you have tilled and is able to put down deep roots and grow tall and wide due to your obedience. The work He did in you allowed the work through you to be fruitful and remain.
During these times, we long to feel valued, to be acknowledged, and reassured. Instead it often feels more like dumped upon ( ohhh, that wet cement!),; drilled through (rebarb- OUCH!), and stamped down ( “tamp that cement well, guys! Gotta consolidate it so it is firm”). The Master Builder knows to use the right finishing tools at the right time.When He is “lining things up” He cannot be rushed!
So what should be our response? The five times that we have experienced this in our lives have taught us the same response applies EVERY time.
Be faithful. Be obedient, and BE YE GLAD!
Note that it is a matter of being, not doing!
We spend so much time worrying over “the call”, “the lost” and “what others think ” of our seemingly dormant season and those responses bury our gratitude for what HE HAS ALREADY DONE! The greatest work of all was accomplished on the cross. He desired us so much that He extended an invitation with arms wide open and love running red.
In contemporary Christianity we tend to forget that. We get a skewed perspective and think that it is up to us to build upon what
He ALREADY did.
So if you think are on the “sidelines”, adjust your thinking to embrace that you are on the Glory production line instead!
It doesn’t matter if you feel like “God, I have already been through this- I AM ready!
“Glory” in Scripture is equivalent to “weighty”. Glory to glory means that each dimension carries new weight, so are you sure you are ready? And maybe too, the place where He is going to position you needs to be able to carry the weight of the work He has done within you and will do through you. Remember that “all things work together” isn’t just about those things that we desire greatly. It means ALL THINGS. Alignment is vital if we want wholeness and stability, right? Then we must be grateful for the invitation to be intimate with Him, above all other things and trust His hand.
I heard this yesterday during the worship:
“Position, Provision and Purpose must pale compared to His Presence.”
That is, desiring HIM above all else. Pinning your hopes upon Him. Surrender.
You did sing that song about “…take me deeper than my feet could ever wander, where my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior…”
There is a wonderful peace that passes understanding when you realize that He is at work and you have embraced it. And you can rest under that yoke; pulling with Him, not against Him. Trust Him. Lift Him up.
Let us hold up His name, His character, His praises. These are what will endure for generations. And we don’t know right now, but our names may be referred to in the generation to come because we sat still while the creating hand of The Potter accomplished His work.