Intentions do not equal obedience.
"When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
- 1 Samuel 16:6-7 (New International Version)
I feel like we always use this scripture to teach about how God looks at people but this week I want to talk about how this principle applies to discerning situations & opportunities in business. If you read my newsletter from last week, you know how I spent most of last year thinking I had to build a coaching program for authors to help sustain myself after leaving my 9-5 while, the whole time, God already had a plan to sustain me. Why did I think that?
Because many times, God's way of providing just doesn't seem realistic.
At least not at first. David wasn't the one Samuel, his dad or anyone else would have thought was God's choice for king. His own dad didn't even invite him to the event with the rest of his brothers (1 Samuel 16:5, 8-11)! It wasn't until later after that boy defeated a whole entire Goliath that I'm sure his father and even Samuel started to realize the kingliness he had in him the whole time.
God knew it was there all along though.
It's the same with whatever business or creation God has called you to put out there into the world. It may seem like, on its own, especially in its beginning stages, it doesn't have the power to sustain you. Making a living doing what you love is supposed to be tough right? Wrong! The truth is, God knows exactly what's inside that seed He planted in you. Provision you can't even fathom right now lives inside of that thing. Your job is to plant it, water it & fertilize it like God told you to.
I don't know if you have kids <<First Name>> but if you've ever had to tell one to do something and they didn't understand why and you had to hit 'em with the "you'll understand when you get older" line, that's how God has to do us sometimes. In our current stage of development, we just can't always see what He can see. That's why we just gotta obey.
Now I'm not saying you can't have a job, hustle or additional revenue stream to help you while you create the thing God told you to create. I'm just saying don't let that side thing prevent you from obeying what God told you to do.
In my case for example, I had let the side thing consume my time, energy & focus to the point where I kept putting off the thing I was supposed to be doing. And "putting off" what God told you to do is not the same as doing what He told you to do. I know your "intentions" are to "eventually" to do it, but:
Intentions do not equal obedience <<First Name>>.
So do yourself a favor and just do whatever it is He told you to do. And if you're unclear on what that is, ask Him for clarity. And if you've been asking for clarity and still not getting it, your first priority shouldn't be developing a business anyway, it should be developing your relationship with God. Because He gives us the answers we need, we just need the ears to hear, eyes to see & confidence to believe when the answers come. And that level of insight only comes through fellowship with Him. So gather yourself and proceed accordingly.
Still seeking clarity? Study these //
1 Corinthians 2:9-10 → I know "eyes have not seen" and "ears have not heard" what God has prepared for them that love Him, but this same scripture also says that He has revealed those things to us by His Spirit. So don't let God's omniscience be a stumbling block to believing in His desire for you to be clear about what He's prepared for you and the provision He's already provided to make sure you are clear about it.
Still hungry? Eat more //
1 Samuel 16:1-13 → Read this entire passage for more context around the story in this week's devotional.
Luke 5:4-6 → Peter didn't see how doing what Jesus told him to do made any sense, but he still did it. And reaped a reward because of it. If you need more faith to obey a direction God has given you, read this Big Idea Food devotional about trusting God when it doesn't make sense.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 → Don't be surprised if God is calling you to do a lot with a little. God likes to use the unexpected things to do great things because at the end of the day it let's people know who the real God is and that He's the one working the miraculous, not us. (study more about this with these scriptures: Judges 7, 1 Samuel 14:6, Genesis 14:22-23, 2 Corinthians 4:7)