It’s not just what we give to whom but how we focus and to what we attend. We can build walls between what we do and what we think. For instance, have you ever sat in church, surrounded by an atmosphere of worship and reading of God’s Word yet let your mind wonder to something far from God’s presence? Can you listen to music or read Scripture yet get frustrated…even with God? Perhaps you even think, “I’m doing everything I know what to do to help me focus and get some problems solved, but it’s just not working!” Or perhaps a more accurate assessment is that things aren’t changing as you’d like them to change.
You can’t be productive and stagnant at the same time. But it can certainly feel that way!
You know you’re doing what you need to be doing, but if feels as if you’re stagnant. However, if you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing, you’re being productive. It might feel like the “same old thing,” but that doesn’t mean that God isn’t working. If you’re seeking God’s will, reading God’s Word, talking and listening to God…with a pure heart…even if you feel as if you’re not growing, you are. God is working even when you don’t feel as if he’s working.
Of course, it’s always possible that you’re going through the motions without a pure heart. You could be determined that you’re only growing if you get a certain answer or feel a certain way, so all the effort you put forth—reading, studying, praying—becomes a bit “stalled.” It’s as if you’re going through the motions. But it’s not about your feelings. Feelings don’t always reflect reality. And the answer isn’t always the goal. The process often provides the answer. And really, don’t you already have the answer?
The answer isn’t a what; it’s a who.
It’s Jesus. You might not know the specifics of a situation, but in faith, you simply pursue Jesus. Even when situations don’t work out the way you want, you still end up closer to Jesus because of the pursuit.
And there’s no duplicity of mind in that!