Weekly Devotional

Drawing Conclusions

Assumptions to where I thought God was leading.

Written by Haley Scully on 11/03/2024

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight."

Proverbs 3:5-6

I have been egregious in drawing conclusions multiple times.

If you look up the word egregious, you get definitions like "outstandingly bad" and "extraordinary in some bad way." Not like mean, just super wrong. It’s usually centered on me trying to figure out what God was doing or what someone else was doing. I’ve definitely had my share of times when I was right, but I've also been wrong on everything from ideas to relationships to jobs. Those seem to be the times I learn the most. 

Here is a short step-by-step example of how I have sometimes drawn conclusions: 

1) I prayed for something.

2) Something happened that looked a bit like what I was praying would happen.

3) I drew a conclusion, or assumed I understood what God is doing and my actions began to be motivated by the conclusion I drew. 

Then, as I began to focus on them, or whatever situation I assumed, I began taking a few of my own steps trying to help the situation along instead of waiting on the Lord to create the path, answer my prayer, or lead me to His purposes. 

There have been times that I have been both overly romantic and overly pragmatic because I assumed what God was doing. I’ve done everything from practicing writing my new last name based on relationship assumptions I’ve made, to sending out resumes and emails trying to get myself in jobs or meetings where I thought I should be. In hindsight, my assumptions about certain people, places, or things were not right and they didn’t lead to where I thought God was leading. Honestly, many times I would feel a little check in my spirit when I started to get ahead of myself, but I convinced myself I was being wise. I don’t do that so much now because I’ve learned a couple of things. 

Here are a couple of things I've learned: 

If God is in it, I can wait for it because it's coming. Whether it's writing a book, His provision, relationships, jobs, apartments, a church home, etc. it's "yes" and "amen" when God is in it. It seems none of these ever come in my timing, but they do come in His as I just keep doing the next right thing. He doesn’t need my help. He just wants my “yes” and my trust. 

If it's not coming, God is still in it. I may not be headed where I assumed He was taking me or the timing may be off. Maybe He was refining my heart, teaching me to love unconditionally, to trust Him completely, or allowing me to be part of a moment of refining for someone else? Our journey is personal, but parts of it He may entrust us, to a situation, or circumstance for someone else. The best thing to do is to stop assuming His answer, and start trusting His heart. It relieves so much pressure to know God has led and is leading me, and that I don’t have to figure it all out in advance. His plans aren’t dependent on me catching the coincidences or clues. They are about me staying dependent on Him.

If we allow it, coincidences and conclusions become not only our motivation to act, but they become our justification to believe or not believe. Our belief in God, or trust in Him, gets wrapped up and contingent on how we “assumed” He would move in the situation when our desires lead our assumptions. 

But, what happens when we are wrong? 

Even egregiously wrong. When we assume what God is doing, and we assume incorrectly, our belief that God IS working can be shaken or even destroyed. Assuming incorrectly isn’t a sin. It just can lead to disappointment and disillusionment that we shouldn’t have to walk through. Just like assumptions and unmet expectations can harm any relationship, they harm our relationship with the Lord. 

It's good to walk steps out when something pops up, seems of interest, or seems like too much to just be a coincidence. But when we laser lock our focus and we decide prematurely that we know what God is doing, we are in danger of testing God, not trusting Him. We should take those moments and coincidences and make ourselves available to the person, place, or situation and see what comes through … it’s called living life. Psalm 46:10 (ESV) says: “Be still and know that I am God.” Not be still and do nothing. Keep doing. Just be authentic and trust God with the outcomes. We don't have to manipulate circumstances when God is in it. Every “yes” and every “no” gets us where we are supposed to go. Don’t demand one or be crushed by the other. 

Faith has a foundation 

There is a difference in walking in faith and walking around being tossed about by coincidences. Faith has a foundation – the goodness of God. If coincidences are evidence of what God is doing, then someday you can look back on those things as confirmation and share your story of how God directed your path. Just be careful to not allow them to become your motivation focus until God has revealed enough of the path for you see where it’s going. You could be egregiously wrong and your relationship with Him suffer a blow that your heart has to wrap around. Be motivated by your belief that God is faithful and He is at work in your life. Walk relationships and opportunities out and see where they go. Live the life He's given you. Just don’t force your own path based on assumptions and coincidences that could lead to regrets. Trust Him for your future, so when the time comes, you can praise Him for your past.

Pray this week:

Dear God, Please forgive me when I go ahead of You and go my own way instead of waiting for You. Help me trust You more. Help me to know that Your ways are best for me. Amen

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8: 28 (ESV)

Can you trust God with your future? If you make trusting God a life long practice, you will praise Him for your past

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