Saturday, April 25, 2009

fleece test

"so gideon said to God, “if You will save israel by my hand as You have said - look, i shall put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then i shall know that You will save israel by my hand, as You have said.” and it was so. when he rose early the next morning and squeezed the fleece together, he wrung the dew out of the fleece, a bowlful of water. then gideon said to God, “do not be angry with me, but let me speak just once more: let me test, i pray, just once more with the fleece; let it now be dry only on the fleece, but on all the ground let there be dew.” and God did so that night. it was dry on the fleece only, but there was dew on all the ground."
- judges 6:36-40

recently, a friend wrote a note on facebook about her own "fleece test" - an attempt to confirm God's will through everyday signs. for her, it was butterflies. for another friend of mine, his decision to receive Jesus as Lord and Saviour was in itself a fleece test, one that he has not shared details of till this day.

there was one incident in which God graciously granted me a positive response. i was reluctant to join my uni because it's always been a dream of mine to study away from home. so i asked for a sign to confirm that God wanted me to stay. lo and behold, i found out that the church i had finally decided to settle into made up of tonnes of students from the university i was heading to.

it was something i held tightly onto during those difficult times when i had to accept the fact that i was staying put for a long time. it was the promise that this is His good will and purpose for me that has given me most comfort and hope during the times when i felt like a failure for being enclosed in the malaysian mentality most of my life.

the other times i've ever used the fleece test were in shallow circumstances - asking God to confirm if this guy or that one is "the one", so i won't have to worry or wonder or watch soppy sweet romcoms to entertain my could-have-been thoughts. or, you know, in more pathetic times when i've asked God to give me a sign if i'm supposed to remain celibate my whole life and become a missionary in the furthest corners of the earth...which would be alot easier to do without husband, children and dog in tow.

of course, those weren't driven by the desire to know God's will. the only motivation behind those requests were to satisfy my own curiosity, tame my own restless heart, an attempt to look further down the path i tread. not the most selfless and holy desires. that's probably why God's settled on the "not yet la, be patient can?!" response. lol.

in january, i wrote down a couple of things i wanted to pray for this year. one of them was for passion, some kind of discontentment to stir me up to take action, a cause to devote my life to. although i'm in a profession that requires passion or else it's gonna be endless days of scut and paperwork, it is one that i find myself being increasingly indifferent towards. sure, i like medicine - i think it's interesting and dynamic and challenging yet rewarding most of the time - but i don't love it.

i don't think i'd die if i weren't doing medicine. i probably wouldn't get all depressed if one day i find myself unable to diagnose, investigate and manage. perhaps it's because i am taking all that for granted right now, in my immaturity, but i just don't love love it.

a friend recently told me that passion doesn't have to be something that burns in us, that it could just be doing what you know you should do. i interpreted his words as it could be a responsibility or a task that needs to be carried out. an important duty that should feature prominently in our lives.

i disagree. i need a spark, a sign, a dry fleece lying among blades of grass covered in dew. something to drive me into action. i need something that tells me straight that yes! this is God's will for me! something specific. an arrow pointing me directly to where i should go...and i will go, with all my heart.

i'm good at fulfilling my responsibilities. i just don't love any of them. that's pretty scary.

lishun at 7:33 AM