Perhaps each and every one of us has our own nuanced version of this story.
A little boy comes to his father: “Daddy, I cannot get these two pieces of my model airplane to fit together. I know they come together somehow, but no matter what I try or how I try it, they just will not come together for me.”
The father walks his young son back to where he was working on his model. He sits down with his son and looks over the table where the model is now laid out.
The father picks up the directions which came in the box with the model, and he carefully looks over and through them – occasionally looking back at the pieces that were laid out on the table. He moved the pieces around a couple of times to try and make sense and match up the individual pieces to the written directions.
He calls his son over to the table and together they now both starts looking at the pieces, then at the directions, then back to the pieces arrayed on the table.
Then together they both discover the problem was that both of the parts should have been brought together s few steps sooner in the model building process.
Dad and son now look at each other with giant smiles plastered on their faces. In the next several hours, both Father and son complete the model as it looked on the box. They put the completed model next to the box – it all came together!
See what happens? The father asked the son. “They tell you to put these pieces together early because they know it will be way more difficult to do so later.”
Lesson being, sometimes when it seems that life’s pieces do not fit together, it maybe because we skipped over the first step because we thought it was all too obvious what that first step was supposed to be. We skip over the first steps.
We seem to “automatically” skip over the first essential steps – then we cannot figure out why all those later steps just do not work the way the directions read.
The first step to any project – big or small – always and forever start with God.
Proverbs 9:9-12 Amplified Bible
Give instruction to a wise man and he will become even wiser;
Teach a righteous man and he will increase his learning.
The [reverent] fear of the Lord [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] is the beginning and the preeminent part of wisdom [its starting point and its essence],
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding and spiritual insight.
For by me (wisdom from God) your days will be multiplied,
And years of life shall be increased.
If you are wise, you are wise for yourself [for your own benefit];
If you scoff [thoughtlessly ridicule and disdain], you alone will pay the penalty.
The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
“What to do first and then what to do next?”
Who is ordering our steps – giving us our directions – step by step directions –
Adam and Eve, evicted from the Garden to cultivate and toil the soil – where did the very first step of those very first step-by-step instructions come from so to even begin what had not been previously known – the cultivating of new soils.
Whose wisdom first taught and then guided Adam on those very first “best gardening practices” how to till and cultivate the previously unworked soils?
Patriarch Noah and God’s command to build the ark. Such a vast and seemingly impossible building project.
What skill sets did Noah possess to even begin such a magnanimous project?
Where did the “blueprints” come from? Who drew them up and hands them off to Noah alone? Blueprints are truly complicated and detailed drawings – who drew, detailed the plans for the construction of the Ark?
Where did Noah begin? Genesis 6:13-17 Amplified Version
It began with God’s command –
13 God said to Noah, “I intend to make an end of all that lives, for through men the land is filled with violence; and behold, I am about to [a]destroy them together with the land. 14 Make yourself an [b]ark of [c]gopher wood; make in it rooms (stalls, pens, coops, nests, cages, compartments) and [d]coat it inside and out with pitch (bitumen). 15 This is the way you are to make it: the length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, its width fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits (450’ x 75’ x 45’). 16 You shall make a [e]window [for light and ventilation] for the ark and finish it to at least a cubit (eighteen inches) from the top—and set the [entry] door of the ark in its side; and you shall make it with lower, second and third decks. 17 For behold, I, even I, will bring a flood of waters on the earth, to destroy all life under the heavens in which there is the breath and spirit of life; everything that is on the land shall die.
How would Noah know what the first and most essential steps would be? The first step in any project is always the most essential step to get “exactly right.”
Such a vast and previously untried and seemingly impossible task as building that very first and specifically “God-detailed, God directed, God measured,” mission minded and ministry-oriented project to be finished by man’s hands.
Genesis 12:1-7Amplified Bible
Abram Journeys to Egypt
12 Now [in Haran] the Lord had said to Abram,
“Go away from your country,
And from your relatives
And from your father’s house,
To the land which I will show you;
And [a]I will make you a great nation,
And I will bless you [abundantly],
And make your name great (exalted, distinguished);
And you shall be a blessing [a source of great good to others];
And I will bless (do good for, benefit) those who bless you,
And I will curse [that is, subject to My wrath and judgment] the one who curses (despises, dishonors, has contempt for) you.
And in you all the families (nations) of the earth will be blessed.”
4 So Abram departed [in faithful obedience] as the Lord had directed him; and Lot [his nephew] left with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he left Haran. 5 Abram took Sarai his wife and Lot his nephew, and all their possessions which they had acquired, and the people (servants) which they had acquired in Haran, and they set out to go to the land of Canaan. When they came to the land of Canaan, 6 Abram passed through the land as far as the site of Shechem, to the [great] terebinth (oak) tree of Moreh. Now the [b]Canaanites were in the land at that time. 7 Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, “I will give this land to your descendants.” So, Abram built an altar there to [honor] the Lord who had appeared to him.
Consider the scope and magnitude of the task God placed before Abram –
How did it all begin – “The Lord said to Abram …
The Lord commanded a polytheistic man who had not ever heard God before.
The Command – Verse 1
“Go away from your country,
And from your relatives
And from your father’s house,
To the land which I will show you;”
Can we presume that Abram would automatically know which ‘land’ God was talking about?
Can we presume Abram already knew exactly where that ‘land’ was located?
Can we presume that Abram knew the exact route to any and every ‘land’ God might have in mind to ‘blindly’ send him to?
What maps did Abram possess as there certainly was no Garmin GPS system?
Read that first and last line again – “Go! … To the land which I will show you …”
This incomprehensible mission and ministry project began with God’s Wisdom.
Verses 2 and 3
It outlined the promises of “if you, Abram, follow me step – by – step …” then the rewards of your fullest obedience to “MY step – by – step …” instructions.
It moved to Abram’s obedience – Verses 4 – 6
Verse 7: It concludes with Abram’s praise and worship for God’s step – by – step directions. 7 Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, “I will give this land to your descendants.” So, Abram built an altar there to [honor] the Lord who had appeared to him.
In fullest possible obedience to God’s carefully detailed, specific step – by – step directions, Abram obeyed! Let God order each of Abrams’ steps and his journey.
The Reward – God made Abraham the Father of “Many Nations.”
Genesis 17:1-5 Amplified Bible
Abraham and the Covenant of Circumcision
17 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the [a]Lord appeared to him and said,
“I am [b]God Almighty;
Walk [habitually] before Me [with integrity, knowing that you are always in My presence], and be blameless and complete [in obedience to Me].
“I will establish My covenant (everlasting promise) between Me and you,
And I will multiply you exceedingly [through your descendants].”
3 Then Abram fell on his face [in worship], and God spoke with him, saying,
“As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you,
And [as a result] you shall be the father of many nations.
“No longer shall your name be Abram (exalted father),
But your name shall be Abraham (father of a multitude);
For I will make you the father of many nations.
Everything we have received, everything we have right now in life, everything we will receive in the future always came arrived and will always and forever come to us, will come to us from God, the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, with the already fulfilled and forever promise of “new beginnings.”
The word ‘beginning’ can mean either “the first part” or “the main part.”
In both cases, the eminently practical message is exactly the same.
The absolute most essential “first step,” and the continual first and foremost priority, in fitting all the parts of life together is to glorify, to honor, to revere, and to worship God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
Because all knowledge, and all wisdom and all truth comes first from God!
And in obedience, we must absolutely first seek our answers only through Him.
If we find ourselves stumped with a part of our life that completely refuses to fit together no matter manners and methodologies, we try –
Revelation 1:8 Amplified Bible
8 “I am the [a]Alpha and the Omega [the Beginning and the End],” says the Lord God, “Who is [existing forever] and Who was [continually existing in the past] and Who is to come, the Almighty [the Omnipotent, the Ruler of all].”
#1: THINGS WITH GOD!
THEN END ALL THINGS WITH GOD!
Revelation 22:12-14Amplified Bible
12 “Behold, I (Jesus) am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, [a]to give to each one [b]according to the merit of his deeds (earthly works, faithfulness). 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End [the Eternal One].”
14 [c]Blessed (happy, prosperous, to be admired) are those who wash their robes [in the blood of Christ by believing and trusting in Him—the righteous who do His commandments], so that they may have the right to the tree of life and may enter by the gates into the city.
In the name of God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,
Let us Pray,
Lead Me on Level Ground Prayer,
God, my Creator, God, the Author of the entirety of my life, teach me to do your will, for you are my only true God. May your Holy Spirit lead me on level ground. I see your faithfulness and goodness in what you have done for me throughout my life. I think about these things, and I thirst for you. Let me hear of your unfailing love every morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. Keep me on firm footing for the glory of your name. Amen.