Looking For a Sign? Here it is.

When I was 18, I was looking for a sign from God. I was being pulled in two different directions from people I cared a lot about.

My parents wanted me to play basketball at Liberty University (and so did I) and my coach and pastor (who were my mentors) wanted me to play at another school where they thought I’d be more successful.

I didn’t want to let anyone down. I wanted to make the right decision. I didn’t want to screw this up. So…. I asked for a sign from God.

A few weeks later my prayer was answered.

I found myself sitting across the room from Dr. Jerry Falwell Sr. (One of the most famous evangelical pastors of all time and the Chancellor of Liberty University)

He had heard about my dilemma and had traveled all the way to my tiny town of Sanford, NC to tell me one thing.

“God does not care where you go to college. Where do you want to go?”
I told the whole story on this weeks Off The Top Podcast: God Doesn’t Care If You Fail.

I was blown away. What do you mean “God doesn’t care”? My entire life I had been told that God had a plan for me and there was something he put me on this earth to do.

I can remember feeling like I had been tricked. Why would God give me a purpose and not tell me about it? It seemed like a mean prank.

Over the years, I’ve had two conversations that helped me make peace with this idea.

Conversation #1:

I had graduated college and was still struggling with the concept of “God’s Will” for my life. I was working in my family furniture business and had hired a salesperson who was also the pastor of a local Church start up. We would have daily conversations about faith, theology & other Churchy stuff.

One day, we were talking about God’s will and I asked him how does one know for sure that they are in Gods will. He said, “Mark 12”.

Not sure what he was referring to I asked for some clarification.

He told me to read Mark 12 and I’d have my answer.

In Mark 12, Jesus was asked,

“Of all the commandments, which was the greatest (or most important).

Jesus answered,

“The most important one, answered Jesus, is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”

Ohhh, So…. All I have to do to be in the will of God is Love him and love people???

Conversation #2:

Sitting at Jubala in Raleigh, I was talking to Jason Goldberg who has many times played the part of my non-religious Jewish Rabbi. I asked him about signs and if he believed God (or the universe) gave people “signs” to point them toward their purpose. He thought for a second and said,

“What if the sign is the desire to do it?”

It reminded me of a saying I heard from the Jewish tradition,

“The bush is always burning”

In the Biblical story of Moses & the burning bush, some scholars believe the “calling” of Moses happened because of his burning desire to see the end of the persecution and slavery of his people.

So before the actual bush was burning, there was something burning inside Moses.

The question is, what is burning inside you?