Now, whereas we have to make the decision, we need to bear in mind that we cannot make the decision without the help of the Holy Spirit. The initiative actually comes from God—it always does.
There is a beautiful verse in the book of Lamentations which is the lament of the prophet Jeremiah after his prophecies for the destruction of Jerusalem had been fulfilled. It is a book of grieving over God’s judgment and over the failure to repent in time.
Right at the end of the fifth chapter, verse 21, there is this pathetic plea: “Turn us back to You, O Lord, and we shall be restored.” But if you look in the margin of the New King James, it says “we shall be turned back,” which is the literal translation. The prophet says, “Turn us, and we shall be turned.” The first move comes from God. If God doesn’t turn us, on our own we are unable to turn.
On the other hand, if God begins to turn us, we will not turn unless we make the right decision. I suppose this is the most critical moment in the life of any human soul. It is the moment when the Holy Spirit is saying, “Turn. I’ll help you.” Here is what we have to decide: “Am I going to cooperate with the Holy Spirit, or am I going to shrug it off and say I don’t want to?” Your decision is what makes the difference. The Holy Spirit will plead with you. The Holy Spirit will move upon you. But He will not make the decision for you.
If we shrug it off and refuse the pleading and the drawing of the Holy Spirit, we have no guarantee we’ll have another opportunity.
Lord, You have put Your finger on an area of my life that is stagnant. I confess that I am stuck, Lord—unable to move forward. As You know, it’s an area that is comfortable and familiar to me. But I know it is holding me back.
I need to make a decision today, Lord. To prune this area from my life, and step by faith into the unknown and unfamiliar that You have for me. Today, Lord, I take that step of faith. I cut off what has held me back, and I step into the future—with You guiding me and walking right beside me. Amen.