August 10, 2016

Tuning Your Ear to God

Cycling for Recovery in PNF 080916If any of you have been following closely to the FB posts regarding the Cycling for Recovery Ride, you already know this mission is a gigantic step in faith. When I planned this trip, organized the schedule, starting reaching out for sponsors and donors, and began my training regimen, I had a pretty clear idea how this mission was going to go.  After all, I was responsible for its success. Or was I?

Along the way, I have learned a very valuable lesson about plans and God.  In fact, this trip is one gigantic educational journey as God is teaching me how to surrender control and trust in His way and His plan.

As my stress continued to mount over the to-do list, the underfunded financing effort, the struggle to manage the timeline, I would often get very quiet and listen to God for his guidance and direction on this mission. With every conversation, He was very clear about what I needed to do as He said “Trust me, I’ve got this.” Even so, I still had this overwhelming desire to do something to manage my expectations and insure the outcome I had defined for the Cycling for Recovery Ministry.

Even now, after ten days on this journey, living and experiencing the truth that God has a plan and is in complete control of this trip, I still find myself negotiating for outcomes and desires I have created for myself.  While I am so much more at peace with the uncertainty of many aspects of this journey, there is that constant temptation to remind God what my needs and desires are.

Then I read today’s verse in a devotional feed…

“My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.” ~ (Proverbs 2:1-5 ESV)

We all struggle to hear God, even though he speaks to us all the time. One of the main reasons we don’t hear him is we are often too focused on our own specific plans, goals, directions, and outcomes.  This is not to say we are being selfish or ungodly in our actions; however, the plans and activities God calls us to engage in might not be as cool, fun, easy, or enjoyable as the ones we have planned.  Rather than hear and obey Him, it is easier to try to honor Him on our terms and in our way.  When that happens, we miss out on a wonderful opportunity to move closer to Him and all that He has to offer us.

I have had a wonderful opportunity to think, reflect, and grow with my four to five hour bike rides over the past ten days.  One thing I have learned to value more than anything is the opportunity to listen to God and lean into His direction to me.  He has not always made me comfortable as I learn to submit to His will, His way, and His truth; but, I have learned that He is watching over me, He is delighted in me, and He has plans for me.  In order for all that to be fulfilled, I must do my part by honoring the directions He has provided and embrace the journey as challenging as it may be.

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Donate to Cycling for Recovery. Cycling for Recovery is a 100Pedals ministry.  The mission of this 3600 mile, cross country bike ride is to bring a message of hope and love to family members who have been struggling with the addiction of a loved one while providing education and awareness to others regarding the issue of addiction in our families and communities. Click here to donate.

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About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.