By: Jerry S. Maneker

"...be it unto me according to thy word." (Luke 1:38)

The above words were spoken by Mary, the mother of Jesus!  The angel, Gabriel, announced to her that she would
become pregnant by the Holy Ghost and give birth to a Son who was to be named Jesus Who would "...be called the
Son of the Highest..." (Luke 1:32)  She, as did all of God's chosen people, believed God and it was her faith that made
her nothing less than the mother of God Incarnate.

This is how important faith is in the life of the child of God!  As the writer of Hebrews said, "...without faith it is impossible
to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek
him." (Hebrews 11:6)  

Faith, therefore, requires us to allow God, and God alone, to run our lives and we are to use Him and His Word as a
yardstick by which to measure our bondage or slavery to Him and Him alone.  We are not to look to the world, the flesh,
or the devil to distract us or be yardsticks by which we measure our success.  God alone is to rule in our lives and we
are to obey the Holy Ghost Who dwells within each and every believer who places his or her faith in God alone.  As the
Apostle Paul said, "For do I now persuade men, or God?  or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should
not be the servant of Christ." (Galatians 1:10)

It is time to recognize that we either choose to worship God Who has called us out before the worlds were formed
(Ephesians 1:4), or worship the world, the flesh, and the devil that put us and our desires at center stage of our lives.  
We either feel that we are to compare ourselves with others and their "successes," or we do what God commands us to
do, despite seen circumstances and even deep disappointments and sufferings.

All of God's children must echo the words of Isaiah when he said, "But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay,
and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand." (Isaiah 64:8)  Paul utilized this metaphor when he said, "...who
art thou that repliest against God?  Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?  Hath
not the potter power over the clay...?" (Romans 20-21)  

After thirty seven chapters detailing Job's sufferings and the pious platitudes and sanctimonious personal assaults upon
Job by his "friends" and nagging wife, God speaks.  Read Chapters thirty eight through forty two to see God's
assessment of Job's situation and why Job then says, "Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee?  I will lay mine hand
upon my mouth." (Job 40:4)  In part, God says, "Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou
mayest be righteous?  hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him? (Job 40:8-9)  In other
words, "Who are you to question me and second guess me and My will for your life?"

Indeed, even before we were born, God knew us and decided whether He would call us out from the world to be His
possession or not.  Jeremiah was told by God, "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest
forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." (Jeremiah 1:5)  Our behavior
and character is irrelevant.  God calls us out, regardless of our qualities, to allow Him to work through us; to do so, we
must submit to His sovereign choices for our lives, regardless of where those choices take us.

All Christians are vehicles of God!  As a clerk in a Christian book store told me a long time ago, "We are coins in God's
pocket and He can spend us any way He wants to."  We must be willing to be spent in the way God chooses for us.  We
may not like the path that we must endure to do our God-ordained tasks.  However, God doesn't ask us to like His
choices for us!  He just expects us to obey Him and trust Him in all of our life circumstances; yield our bodies and minds
to Him to do with us as He wills.

Therefore, it is unwise and unprofitable to compare oneself with anyone else.  Each person is unique and God will use
that uniqueness for His own purposes.  The Potter makes the clay pot!  The pot doesn't make the Potter!  Envy and an
attempt to do, or be, what God has not ordained for one to do or be is a mistake and hurtful to the individual and to God
and His purposes.

The trite saying that "God has a plan for your life" is true!  Each of our jobs is to discern that plan and follow it,
regardless of the paths on which it leads us.  Those paths may well involve incomprehension, suffering, and despair.  
However, when one knows he or she is in God's will; when one has allowed God to stake His claim upon his or her life,
blessedness, fulfillment and peace is always present in that child of God.  

Regardless of our feelings and life-circumstances that are consequences of the paths that God has ordained for us, we
must always remember, "...in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning." (Psalm

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