When we hear the Voice of God calling us unto Himself, it is an exciting time in our lives. Who wouldn’t want to be picked out among all those in the world for a particular task? The challenge comes when we find that it is not automatic fame and fortune. There is no great acclaim, rather, the reaction of those around us is usually one of rejection. For in order to fully learn how to follow God, according to Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest, we have to become broken bread and poured out wine. Why, because you can’t drink grapes!
Jesus learned perfection through suffering:
Since, then, "the children" have a common physical nature as human beings, he also became a human being, so that by going through death as a man he might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might also set free those who lived their whole lives a prey to the fear of death. It is plain that for this purpose he did not become an angel; he became a man, in actual fact a descendant of Abraham. It was imperative that he should be made like his brothers in nature, if he were to become a High Priest both compassionate and faithful in the things of God, and at the same time able to make atonement for the sins of the people. For by virtue of his own suffering under temptation he is able to help those who are exposed to temptation. Hebrews 2:14-18 (PHILLIPS)
God could have sent Jesus to earth in any form – He could have been an angel, or some other celestial being. Yet, God knew that in order for mankind to get the message that they could live fee of temptation, He had to send His Son in the same form as man – subject to the same temptations, yet show the world that they could live free of temptation by total dependence on God.
For example, His rise to popularity did not sway Jesus:
While he was in Jerusalem at Passover-time, during the festivities many believed in him as they saw the signs that he gave. But Jesus, on his side, did not trust himself to them—for he knewthem all. He did not need anyone to tell him what people were like: he understood human nature. John 2:23-25 (PHILLIPS)
How many of us fall because when God begins to elevate us, we believe the okey-doke that we are all that and a bag of chips?
When we allow the Hand of God to "perfect those things that concern us" – it is not usually in the manner that we like. We are crushed, bruised, and broken by an enemy, or even who we thought was a friend. We have to bear ridicule and persecution at the hand of someone who we do not feel is as capable as we are. We are put in humbling situations before those we want to be seen in esteem. We cry out to God, "does it have to be this way" – can’t I suffer my crucifixion in another way?
Yet we are reminded of the words of Job:
9 On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him:
10 But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.Job 23:9-10 (KJV)
Oh, Father, your ways are certainly NOT my ways – yet if you help me, I will trust you.