Are You Aligned With God … Or With The World?
“Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.”
A friend recently told me he had been seeing a chiropractor regularly for the last several years. I asked why, a little surprised because he had never complained about chronic back problems. He told me that while a lot of people think chiropractors are only for people with severe pain, in fact chiropractic care should be part of a holistic treatment program because the spinal column, when properly aligned, can help the body heal itself from the inside out. Poor sleep, slow metabolism, chronic headaches, respiratory problems, elevated blood pressure, stress and anxiety – all of these have been linked to poor spinal alignment.
Our faith lives are similar. When we are out of alignment in our walks with God, other parts of our lives often suffer, even when we don’t connect the two.
The world expects us to align our goals, our thoughts, our dreams, and our actions to its demands. It tells us we should go through life doing what we want to do, making plans our way, and perhaps occasionally fitting God in where we can.
Yet how often do we find our lives feeling somewhat empty, lacking in fulfillment? Even when we attain material success, surrounding ourselves with possessions and things, how many of us experience the sense that there’s got to be something more (Matthew 16:26)?
Usually, these are signs (or symptoms) that our will is not in alignment with God and His will. For some, especially those who are goal-oriented and hardworking, it feels like there’s something missing, no matter how many to-do lists get checked off. For others, it may seem like nothing ever comes easy, as though barriers are at every turn. In both of these situations, the thing that may be missing is … alignment.
The truth is, unless we turn to God first, seeking His guidance we are like travelers heading for a destination with no GPS or map. We may reach the destination, but we are just as likely to arrive at a completely different location. Or like someone going through life with a poorly aligned spine, not knowing why they have constant headaches and knee pain.
While it may seem difficult to take the step of faith of looking for guidance in everything we do from God, once we realize the power of His wisdom and learn to trust He will show us the way, we experience a sense of freedom and peace unrivaled by any worldly accomplishment. And it works every single time we come to God in faith (Proverbs 3:6).
Of course, this type of faith requires us to believe God will do what He promises. Sometimes, this takes patience. Other times we may even doubt. The important thing is to ask! Don’t be discouraged if the answers don’t come immediately. The delay may be God telling us He is still preparing us for the next step.
If you are unaccustomed to seeking God’s will before leaping after your next goal or project, know it will likely take practice. You may forget, or perhaps get busy. When this happens, just pause right where you are and ask God to help you plan the next steps. Pray for guidance. He many not answer immediately or in the way you expect, but He will answer (1 John 5:14).
Eventually, aligning your wants and desires to God’s will for you becomes second nature. You’ll automatically turn to God before looking to the world. You’ll learn patience and how to “be still” in the knowledge that He is God.
And when we see God’s journey for us is much more fulfilling and glorious than anything we plan for ourselves, we won’t want anything that isn’t meant for us in the first place!
One of the essential truths of scripture is that regardless of what we desire, God’s will is always accomplished. When we align with His will, our lives come into focus and our paths are made smooth (Isaiah 26:7). When we come into alignment with God, the inner peace we experience will surpass any satisfaction the world can ever give us.