Continuing in our series of teaching resources for Christian men only, Jack Zavada of Inspiration-for-Singles.com shines a light on "How to Survive a Power Failure." Learn the keys to receiving God's power and surviving life's power failures.
How to Survive a Power Failure
If there’s one thing we men love, it’s power.
Whether it’s a pickup truck as big as an elephant, a circular saw that can tear through a two-by-four like it was a loaf of French bread, or a metal wood that can smack a golf ball 200 yards down the fairway, having power in your hands is an exhilarating experience.
But sooner or later, you’re going to experience a power failure. Maybe your marriage will be in trouble. Maybe you'll have to watch one of your parents dying slowly from cancer or Alzheimer’s. Or maybe something will happen at work and you'll lose your job.
Being powerless is every man’s worst nightmare. We can’t stand watching a bad situation unfold and being unable to do anything about it.
Since we were little boys, we've been taught that a real man takes charge and makes things happen. He studies the problem, figures out what’s wrong, then does what it takes to solve it.
Too bad life doesn't always cooperate with that scenario. You don’t have to be a Christian very long to find out we’re not immune to trouble. In fact, many of us have even more problems than nonbelievers.
What do you do when you can’t make things right? What do you do when you have no power and all you can do is stand on the sidelines and watch?
There’s Watching, Then There’s WatchingWe tend to take an either/or view of Christianity. We believe that if only we follow Jesus Christ, he'll give us the power to plow through life with nothing stopping us. Or we believe that we’re in the passenger seat, just along for the ride, and that God doesn't need us to do anything.
The truth lies somewhere in-between.
As you read the Bible, you see that the great heroes of faith, like Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Joshua and Gideon were active. They did their part and learned to get out of the way when it was time for God to do his part.
They were both doers and watchers, and that’s what we need to be. Yet the kind of watching they did wasn't passive. It was active because of what was going on inside them.
How To Receive God’s PowerThese great men lived out their trust in God. They saw his power working in their lives because they learned how to surrender.
That’s the key to surviving life’s power failures. The amount of God’s power in our lives is directly proportional to how much we surrender to him. No surrender, no power. Little surrender, little power. Total surrender, unlimited power.
It’s simple, really. God can’t fill a heart that’s full of itself, and in our pride and arrogance, that’s how we men often are.
Surrender is scary. It goes against our masculine nature. In every endeavor in life, surrender is a bad thing, but in our relationship with God, surrender is essential.
We don’t believe this until our lives hit rock bottom, until we get into one of those power failure situations where our own power is worthless.
Even then, we fight against it. We’re too stubborn to let God take control. Surrender is so distasteful to us that we go through unnecessary misery rather than give in to God. Our pride prolongs our agony, and Satan just loves that.
Stepping Out By DegreesSpiritual growth is gradual. We don’t go from being a fresh-faced convert to a mature saint in one easy step. If we’re wise, though, we begin to give God opportunities to demonstrate his faithfulness. We step out by degrees. Most of us men are too bullheaded to do it any other way.
Over the years, we learn that God can be trusted, not only in small things but in life’s worst tragedies as well. This idea of surrender becomes a proven reality in our lives.
Our Christian faith doesn't guarantee that every tragedy will have a happy ending. But God does promise to pour his power into our lives to the degree that we let him. Once we make that truth our own, it will help us survive every power failure we have to face.
More from Jack Zavada:
• Loneliness: Toothache of the Soul
• The Christian Response to Disappointment
• Time to Take Out the Trash
• Lifestyles of the Poor and Unknown
• A Message Meant for Only One Person
• Mathematical Proof of God?
Jack Zavada, a career writer and contributor for About.com, is host to a Christian Web site for singles. Never married, Jack feels that the hard-won lessons he has learned may help other Christian singles make sense of their lives. His articles and ebooks offer great hope and encouragement. To contact him or for more information, visit Jack's Bio Page.