Years ago my friend Kim and I got into a serious debate about God’s influence on her career. After suffering from several mental and physical illnesses driven by a hostile work environment, I urged her to quit her job to prevent death from work-related stress.
She explained that she’d prayed to God to lead her to a new job, but He hadn’t lead her to the opportunity. I candidly replied, “No, He’s waiting for you to lead yourself to a new job.” Unfortunately, my comment upset her.
On Friday, Pastor Gabriel Stovall of Forest Chapel Baptist Church of Forest Park, GA, wrote a blog post to Christians who resort to P.U.S.H. or “praying until something happens” instead of making things happen for themselves. “How would you feel if I, a pastor, told you to stop praying?” he asked. “…I’m telling you to stop praying. …Well, not to be contradictory, but just as certain times call for and require our fervent prayers, believe it or not, there is also a time where God calls us to stop praying and start moving! This time comes when God has already given us instructions and directives to follow. It doesn’t matter how silly these instructions may seem, or how ‘outside of the box’ God’s directions are. The fact that what He may be asking us to do seems impossible is not important. What is necessary is our obedience once we’ve clearly and accurately heard the voice of God,” Pastor Stovall explained.
He further explains by referencing the first 12 verses of Exodus 14, where Moses encourages the Israelites to watch God fight for them despite receiving specific directions from God on how to conquer their tribulations. Pastor Stovall then references verse 15 when God asks Moses “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on!”
“In essence, God is telling Moses: Stop praying about something that I’ve already shown you! Stop using your prayers as a tool of procrastination!” Pastor Stovall explains. “Stop asking me questions that you already have been given an answer to. It’s time for you to move on!” Somewhere between verses 14 and 15, Moses recanted on his recently displayed faith and began questioning the voice of the Lord. Somewhere between verses 14 and 15, Moses forgot to believe in that which he so powerfully preached.”
You can read Pastor Stovall’s full blog post here.