I wanted to be intentional is trusting God to prepare me this year. Of course, he’s been faithful! It’s not that I doubted God’s preparation; I just wanted to be more intentional in yielding to it, recognizing it, and giving God the credit he deserves.
I can often see how God has prepared me when I look backward. (I invited many friends to join me in celebrating God’s preparation through a blog post series called “A Month of Preparation.” To read more, type “A Month of Preparation” in the search bar at the top of this page. All posts ran in March 2013.)
I’ve also become more sensitive to God’s preparation while I’m in the process. After all, yesterday’s preparation was at some point “today.” I won’t always understand the specifics of God’s preparation, but I can certainly acknowledge he is preparing me in whatever situation I’m experiencing.
But in the past couple months, God has taken his teachings of preparation to another level for me. Preparation isn’t something I can acknowledge and appreciate in hindsight or in real-time. Preparation is also anticipatory. When I expect God will prepare me, I am not only aligning myself with his will but also giving him the glory ahead of time.
Sometimes my acknowledgement of his preparation in advance is between him and me. I thank him for what he is about to provide or take me through. I acknowledge that I will approach the blessings and troubles ahead with his perspective, not mine.
But there’s not as much tangible accountability when I don’t speak in preparation, and there is power is speaking God’s name. So, I’m developing a habit of claiming God’s provision and promise to others before I can see his provision and promise. Then, I have taken a step of faith, and I’m not tempted to take credit for something or try to explain it with reason. If I’ve said “God will…,” I’m claiming him ahead of time in faith. I’m prepared to proclaim, accept, and live out God’s will. It doesn’t mean I proclaim the specifics of what’s going to happen.
I simply proclaim in boldness that what I’m going to do is in God’s strength, not mine, that he gets the glory, not me, and that I trust him, no matter what.
Joseph faithfully lived out his faith by giving God glory before doing what he knew only God would provide. He could have just as easily proceeded without mentioning God by name. He could have taken the credit himself or given the credit to God in hindsight. Whether his boldness came from his full confidence in and reliance on God or whether it was important to him for accountability, the result was the same.
(1) He placed himself without reservation under the authority of God.
(2) He informed those around him that it was God and God alone who guided and provided for him.
The two men answered, “We both had dreams last night, but no one can explain their meaning to us.”
Joseph said to them, “God is the only One who can explain the meaning of dreams. Tell me your dreams.” (Genesis 40:8)
The king said to Joseph, “I have had a dream, but no one can explain its meaning to me. I have heard that you can explain a dream when someone tells it to you.”
Joseph answered the king, “I am not able to explain the meaning of dreams, but God will do this for the king.” (Genesis 41:15-16)
How is God preparing you, and how are you responding?