God will not be ignored. You’re familiar with the phrase that comes from the bible ‘God will not be mocked’? Here is how it reads in the Message version (Galatians 6:7-8).
Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!—harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life.
The implication here is that when we ignore the needs of others we are in fact ignoring God. This passage was doubly illustrated in my life recently.
The first encounter came when I was complaining to God (gasp!) about some of the difficulties I was having with some of the members of our church. I did one of those rhetorical prayers. You know; the type you don’t really want God to answer. I furrowed my brow and said, “See, God, this is why I didn’t want to be a pastor.” No quicker had the words left my mouth then I felt in my heart, “And it’s exactly why I wanted you to be a pastor.” Recognizing that we had a dialog going I wanted to talk out what was boiling in my soul. I started in with the reasoning, “Inadequacy spurs depression, disillusionment, disgust…” I wanted to continue with my clever alliterations but was cut short by this word, “…dependence.” There it was. In my weakness he is strong. It’s ok to feel inadequate just as long as I am not forgetting nor ignoring his complete adequacy.
The second incident of a call to personal action based on my trust in his enabling was that same night. Is two AM considered night or morning? My sleep was interrupted by the squawking of my toddler in the other room. Again relying on my futile cleverness I thought that maybe there was a way that this could be easily managed without me having to get out of bed. God hears our prayers, right? Well this one was not rhetorical, but it was lazy. “God, please give him peace.” I waited, hoping against all hope for the crying to subside. Over the increasing din in the adjacent room I sensed an answer to my prayer that my child might be given the gift of fairy-dust peace, “I gave him you.” The cuddling that ensued was greatly appreciated by my son who fell quickly back to sleep.
I thank God that he is teaching me how to not ignore him by not ignoring the needs of those who he has graciously allowed to be placed in my life.
In what areas of your life have you been nixing the ignorance?