I put down the book, disappointed. One of my favorite Christian inspirational writers, the woman who was the reason I became inspired to write myself, had a new book out, and I didn't like the book. I couldn't believe what she was saying that God told her, because it was so opposite of what he was telling me. Was I wrong? Was she?
I thought back to past things she'd written and said. In the past God had told her to give up television, now she was giving up sugar. How could he be telling her to give up things, when he was telling me of my freedom in him. How could he tell her to give up certain food, when he was reminding me that what I put into my body doesn't matter, it's what comes out of my heart and mouth that could be sinful.
As I continued to search the Bible, and prayed, I realized something wonderful. We could both be right. The Word of God is living and active, and it speaks to us exactly what we need to hear. It would seem that her struggle must be self-control, and so God is training her to be self controlled by having her give up things for him.
Me? My struggle is legalism and accepting grace. So God was training me to be free, not in bondage to "do" things for him, but to just accept his love and forgiveness. God wanted me to stop living a life of man-made schedules and man-made rules, and accept the grace he gave me, the grace that I don't have to earn.
I love that God speaks to each of us individually, giving us exactly what we need. When you read a teacher's writings, it is your job to weigh their words prayerfully to decide if what they are saying is for you or just for them. Just because God calls one person to something, he may not be calling all to it. This is also seen in the fact that he gives each of us different gifts.
Yes, there are universal commands for all of us. And if anyone believes that God is telling them something that is opposite of Bible teaching, they are wrong. However, God works on each of us in different areas at different times. He may be telling one person to "Go" at the same time he tells someone else to "Be still." Both are Biblical commands. Which is God saying to you?
It is important to listen to good teachers, but it is more important to listen to God. What is He calling you to do?
Kelly Combs is a Christian wife, mom, writer and speaker. You can learn about Kelly by visiting her website at www.kellycombs.com