Facebook Twitter RSS

How Important is Understanding?

Understanding precedes reality. I've had three conversations this week that have underscored this principle in powerful ways. Two of these conversations were with individuals who thought they were struggling with submission issues. Yet, after speaking with them for a relatively short period of time their hearts shifted around my words and found peace. At the close of each conversation I said, "You totally received what I just shared with you. That means you've been in submission all along. The hearts of the rebellious don't shift around the words of the wise the way your heart has shifted around my words!" The third conversation was with a young man who thought he didn't know anything about sonship and that he was still operating out of the orphan spirit. He discovered that he is actually the pattern son of the house God has put him into, and the model of one who is walking in his inheritance.

The first two individuals didn't understand submission very well, but they were in it! The third guy didn't understand sonship too well, but he was one! For all three of these individuals the realities of submission and sonship were in place long before the understanding of them came, and this is the typical pattern for most aspects of life.

After all, how much did you understand about marriage before you got married? Or about parenthood before your child was born? As a senior pastor I can say that you don't understand the pastoral task until you are one, and you don't understand the ministry until you are in it! You can seek all the understanding you want, but if you don't start with reality, there's nothing for understanding to catch up with!

Now don't get me wrong, we need understanding. Understanding is important, but reality is more important. Understanding without reality is form without substance, knowledge without nature, like clouds with no rain. Understanding can come from reading about a particular reality, but that understanding is lifeless until you begin to live it!

Proverbs 3:5 tells us that we should trust in the Lord and not lean on our own understanding. This means that we can be in submission to God and obey him even when we don't understand what he's doing in our lives or why he's doing it. Understanding is not a prerequisite for obedience.

Proverbs 24:3 tells us that while wisdom is what builds the house (and we'll have to talk more about wisdom in future posts, I hope!?!), understanding is what establishes it. In other words, understanding establishes you in a reality that was already real before you understood it. You had it before you understood it, but now that you understand it you are established in it and you can't be moved from it! The importance of understanding is that it either solidifies you or de-solidifies you in your reality; it solidifies you in those realities that you deem positive and good, and de-solidifies you in those realities that you deem harmful by exposing the deception beneath them. This is why understanding plays so prominently in the book of Proverbs - not because understanding creates any reality, but because understanding can anchor you, making you unmovable and steadfast in what God has done in your life.


  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Myspace
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Stumnleupon
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Technorati
Author: admin
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, contetur adipcing elit, sed do eiusmod temor incidunt ut labore et dolore agna aliqua. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.