It depends – the means to the ends

March 12, 2024 1 By Mirm

I am a person who loves her independence. I value the traits of standing on my own two feet, my own merits and my individuality. It is a sense of freedom and self-reliance that feeds me. But God made me for something more.

This is what the Lord says: Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the Lord. But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.’ — Jeremiah 17:5,7 NIV

More than I want independence, I don’t want to ever be free from God’s influence and power in my life. Learning to surrender and live within the power of the Holy Spirit requires my complete dependence.  That is rough. It means putting down the pen and letting Him write my story. It means getting out of the driver’s seat and letting Him take the wheel. It means letting go of the things I was never meant to carry. It means leaning in and trusting Him every moment of every day. Depending on God (or anyone) means I trust Him and I am relying on Him. It does not mean I am afraid or incompetent. It takes courage to lean on someone and to put my faith in fallible people and an infallible God. But it is what we are meant to do.

Total dependence is a biblical concept. In fact we are NEVER encouraged to be independent! For the Israelites, even the land was designed to promote dependence on the Lord. Dependence is central to the teaching of Jesus; He tells us that we need that childlike dependence and warns the rich against depending on their wealth. If Christ became dependent by taking on flesh then, for mere mortals, how much more!? Jesus continued to demonstrate a dependent spirit when He prayed all night before choosing the disciples, and so on and so forth!

So, what does dependence look like? The basics of God’s Word would include prayer and bible study. It means community. It means listening and paying attention to the needs of others before chasing our own dreams and desires.  It means caring about the welfare of others and their best interests and depending on them to help us too! And one thing being independent might do is cause a person to look at their own needs first or only. We are called to lean in and depend on each other over and over. The many “one-anothers” push us into dependence on each other, or at least interdependence. We are called to bear burdens, confess sins to each other, pray for and encourage each other and help each other.

Today at a staff meeting we were talking about dependence – specifically, dependence on the Holy Spirit. My oneness in Christ is not to be confused with being one – solo – independent! Rather, it is a reminder that apart from Him I can do NOTHING! Depending on Him requires yielding in obedience.

On Friday, this all was made more evident to me in that I could not move by myself. I was dependent on others. I could have hired a moving company and paid someone to help me, but I needed help regardless of who helped. Plain and simple dependence. So, I chose to let people I know help me. It was not easy. It was embarrassing and overwhelming. But it was also good and humbling to watch God care for me, in spite of myself. And to see that self sufficiency doesn’t work. I felt valued and cared for as I relied on the generosity and kindness of others.

Thank you S. J. B. K. S. M – L & G. You are my heroes. Thank you to all of you who have been praying for me and carrying my load to the throne of grace. It is no small thing. I’m depending on it .
That is a “Deep-Ends” thought.