There are many passages of Scripture that give instructions whose application is not always apparent.
One of the most important disciplines prescribed in your Bible is to “set the Lord always before” you (Psalm 16:8). Elsewhere it is put this way, “In all your ways, acknowledge him…” (Proverbs 3:6).
But how? Dallas Willard gives us solid direction here:
The gospel of the kingdom of God which Jesus preached, “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand,” is precisely the good news that, in everything I am and do, God invites me to invite him to be my co-worker. He invites me to look to him, to act and move in tangible ways no matter what it is.
Go back to that verse in Proverbs, “In all your ways acknowledge him.” What does that mean? It means that we recognize he is God, and we acknowledge his authority in what we are doing. When I set up a course, or when I undertake to translate something from German into English, or whatever I am doing, writing a paper, composing a book, I expect God to direct me. I expect there to be a movement in my life that is more than me.
I’ve written about how Proverbs 3:5-7 is not about a weird mysticism that is against using wisdom. But it is the case that the form of mysticism, if it is mysticism at all, described by Willard is precisely what the text says.
- Acknowledge that what you do should be done in the character of Christ: humility, love, honesty, thoughtfulness, and so-on.
- Acknowledge that what you do should be done excellently, as unto the Lord. This goes back to Genesis 1:29-2:15. We were made to take dominion or be garden cultivators.
- Acknowledge that the knowledge necessary for your task is made available in the world by God and is hidden in Christ (Colossians 2:1-5).
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