Now Sarai, Abram's wife had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar; so she said to Abram, "The Lord has kept me from having children. Go sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her - Genesis 16:1-2 NIV
While we were in Illinois visiting my wife's family over the Columbus Day weekend, we went to a farm that had a corn maze. My 2 sons and their cousins decided to take on the challenge of the corn maze (I decided not to since I am directionally challenged). After paying the admission fee, my sons and their cousins proceeded to the entrance of the maze. The attendant stationed at the entrance stated that he had to go over several rules pertaining to safety before they were able to start their journey into the maze. I stood off to the side to listen as the attendant gave the instructions. One of the things that he told them was to use the map provided and under no circumstances, try to take shortcuts. The majority of the people he explained, that tried to utilize shortcuts ended up off the path and in some cases, were two hours away from the entrance and had to be rescued.
My brothers, does this sound familiar? I know I can identify with those people that are stubborn and try to take the shortcut to success. By nature, I can be an impatient person and because of that weakness, there have been times that I have short circuited my potential for success by trying to use a shortcut instead of staying true to the process. God has a plan and a timeframe for that plan as well. We have to possess the patience needed to see the plan to completion within God's ordained timeframe.
The story of Abraham and Sarah in the book of Genesis provides an excellent example of the ramifications of pursuing a shortcut as opposed to operating within God's timeframe. As most of you know, God made a covenant with Abram that he would be a father to a nation even though he and Sarai were childless. Because the birth of the heirs promised to Abram and Sarai did not occur as soon as Sarai wished, she had her husband to sleep with Hagar, their maidservant in order to speed up the process. The results were disastrous as it often is when we decide to do things our own way. The lesson for all of us is to always seek God's counsel through prayer when are tempted to go our own way and deviate from the path that He has established for us. As we all know, satan specializes in tempting us to rely on our own devices when trying to accomplish God's plans. Let's resolve today to resist the temptation to do things our on way and in our wisdom and look to our Father for guidance. Rest assured that this is the path that God has designed for us and the one that will be the most effective as we embark on changing the world by impacting our fellow man.
Ken Sadler is a leader of Men's Ministry at a megachurch and has a heart and passion for helping men become the best they can be.