I love the song Oceans by Hillsong United – the images it conjures up in my mind remind me of how our focus on business building often has us feeling like we’re swimming in deep water, walking through valleys and wilderness, yet God is there, hands reached out for us to trust Him. Yet even as we know this in our pursuit of success His way, we struggle to release ourselves from the comfort zone of driving and striving life to “make things happen” in our business. We think “if it is to be, it’s up to me,” and we simply have to swim harder, run faster, do more, and surely we should have packed better for this journey through deep waters and the vast wilderness.
Yet Isaiah 43 tells us the Lord says:
Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.
He goes on to say He is doing new things, making roads in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. The point? We don’t have to handle any of it by ourselves when we surrender it all to Him. Yet we often think this surrender makes us weak. We fear people may think “what are you doing and why have you given up?” When the truth is we haven’t given up at all, we’ve just given over.
The surrender can be challenging because as we seek to bridge faith and business because, the world around our business may not understand. We may hear things like “I don’t get why you’re not pushing harder. You seem to be in a slump – you just need to do more.” That’s hard to hear from the influential people in our business. But what if we’re there because God is trying to teach us to trust Him as he calls us out into the deep water or to walk His path through a vast wilderness. What if we instead choose to answer to the highest influence available as followers of Christ – our heavenly Father?
In his commentary on these verses in the Life Principles Bible NKJV, Dr. Charles Stanley says, “God loves to work in our lives in new and unexpected ways. We should not always look for him to do what he has done before, but learn to expect the unexpected.” The question is, are we leaving room for Him to do the unexpected? Are we fully surrendering our journey even in the deep waters and vast wilderness? I think sometimes I do that better in life than I do in business because somehow I think my business is all up to me. But as a wise mentor told me, if I’ve surrendered my life to Him, my business is included! In that we can all find peace, knowing He will never leave us flailing in the water or wandering in the darkness. He is always there, and He always makes a way!