…his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness… II Peter 1:3 (KJV)
I’m learning to use my new “Think Pad,” after the demise of my ancient laptop. My technician friend spent about an hour with me yesterday explaining the new features. And then he left a full-page list of directions among which are these sorts of instructions: Think twice before installing software that didn’t come from the manufacturer. Do not install browsers that didn’t come from the manufacturer. Don’t install malware software; you already have it. You have everything you need.
If there are any of you who don’t understand computer jargon, essentially my technician said, Just use what was installed by the manufacturer and not anything that comes from anyone else. You already have everything you need. And his note was written all in capital letters, which in computerese is like shouting or at least strongly emphasizing the message.
As I reflected on this, I thought about the times I look outside God’s provisions for an easier or better way to address my concerns. Perhaps that person could give me insight; that new book might shed light on the matter; or there may be a technique I haven’t yet tried. You know what I mean.
I recently was tempted to fret about a relational matter. I examined the situation from one side and then the other. I stewed about what seemed too complex to unwind. I knew to cast my cares on the Lord, but as soon as I had the opportunity, I hashed the whole thing out with a trusted person. Of course, that didn’t bring satisfaction, so I thought about contacting a counselor. In the meantime, I had created more than a tempest in a teapot.
I wish I’d had Ric’s directions to remind me to use only what was installed by the Manufacturer. You already have everything you need. God has, not will, already provided everything we need that pertains to life and godliness. He has said that we’re not to be anxious about anything but to pray and give thanks, and then God’s peace will fill our hearts and minds. And there are so many other wonderful promises we can access when necessary.
After struggling with my concern and allowing it to distract me from the peace and trust that was already mine in Christ Jesus, I released the care and cast it on the Lord just as was advised in the Manufacturer’s directions. I haven’t added an inch to my stature or changed the circumstances, but I’ve put the issue where it belongs—on Jesus’ shoulders. And he’s giving grace that I need to move forward.
I’m going to keep Ric’s reminders close at hand: You already have what you need; use only what came from the Manufacturer; don’t add anything to that.
Father, thank you for the many ways you remind us to listen to you and to rely on your provisions. Forgive me when I forget. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.