So it’s finally dawning on me again why the last several days have been a struggle. It has not occurred to me until this evening that on Sunday evening, I believe, I had posted about people needing to know Christ. And how I had been off track in witnessing to anyone lately. But that I needed to get back out there and not be afraid anymore. But of course, after that I should have seen the attack coming.
I think I did see it in the beginning, but I quickly lost sight of that when I started distancing myself from God.
Why did I start distancing myself? Because I wasn’t living up to the person I wanted to be this week. The new Creation in Christ Jesus that I wanted others to see… And why did I not let them see that?
Because I compromised in those weak moments of
‘do I want to just pout right now?’,
‘do I want to just be angry without cause?’
‘Do I want to show compassion and grace, or do I want to show this person what I really feel?’
(—-and notice I said “I”.)
Well, I chose “I” in just about every circumstance this week, especially once I started distancing myself from Him.
When will I learn? It’s not about me. And yet, I lost focus of that premise once again. After the last time I thought “i totally see that now!” I’m relearning this over again. Apparently I needed the reminder because I’d forgotten so soon.
When I live in the fact that it’s all about Him–and I come second–it makes life so much more tolerable. It makes everything so clear again.
Because I realize that as mad as [the flesh, me, myself, my feelings, “I”] want to be at someone or something–even an idea or a thought, it is really my responsibility to rise above that and pray for that person, or just simply to take whatever the circumstance is to God in prayer, and leave it there.
It’s not my right nor my responsibility to chastise, belittle, ignore, or act a fool toward anyone. Though yes I’ve been guilty of all that. Under my breath, or out loud, it doesn’t matter–it’s all the same.
The fact that I chose to dwell on that one thing at that one time–whatever ‘that’ might have been in that particular moment–instead of releasing it into my Father’s capable hands–that makes me an idolater.
How? Because I think I have the answers and I think my answers are better suited or I think my bitter reaction is better than a reaction of grace and hope and love. Because in that moment, had I surrendered to my Father, that is exactly the reaction He would have had.
Now don’t get me wrong, my Father is not lollipops and gumdrops and fantasyland. My Father is real. And He is Holy and Righteous and Just. There is such a thing as Righteous anger.
But I have to check myself and my motives. Was any of my anger Righteous anger? Or was it really honestly ‘all about me’ in that very moment? I dare say it was probably more the latter rather than the former in most every case.
It was about my pride and my feelings. It was not about putting God first. Because had I done that, I would have not gotten angry. Had I chosen to let God handle it, He would have gladly taken it, and in its place, i would have been filled with His love, compassionate and sweetly refreshing, helping me to push on.
But as it was, I found myself drained and at the end of my rope on numerous occasions. Because when I chose instead to let my flesh and my pride get in the way and overrule my love for my Father–at that point, multiple times throughout the week, it became all about me. It was no longer about God. And at those moments, I became an idolater.
But did my Father love me any less? No. In fact, He brought me into contact with people that care about and love me and pray specifically for me and my struggles. And through the prayers of the righteous, He can accomplish much.
I still am a work in progress. But He loves me too much to let me stay where I am. He is constantly and continually changing me and aligning me with the person He created me to be.
When I keep the focus that it is all really His burden to carry and not my own, I am relieved of the pressure of trying to perform. I’m no longer trying to ‘show them who I am in Christ’. Instead, I am simply living a grace-filled life, through His power alone, and letting Christ shine through me in the darkest of hours. He can do this only when I choose to let Him handle it–without “my help”.
When will I learn that He knows best?!!! That my plan of action fails miserably every time. That even when I feel justified in my anger, He is saying “let it go, let Me carry that, My child.”
For the rest of this week, I choose to just allow Him to help me grow closer again to Him, through the work of the Spirit that draws me. I choose to ask Him to help me be open to Him. I choose to ask Him to shut the other doors that somehow I opened or I let get open somehow because I wasn’t standing my ground to keep those doors shut and the enemy out.
Father, thank you for opening my eyes and helping me see –again. Thank you Jesus for letting me participate in my own healing–by reaching out to those who You put in my life to stand with me and support me and pray for me. Thank You that You love me so much You never give up on me, but You are always willing to help me get back on course when I fall–sometimes rather clumsily, most times pretty hard. You are always there to pick me back up and sit me back on the path that You have chosen for me.
But most of all, thank You Father that You are love. That You are grace-filled and You allow us all the same chances to learn, sometimes the same lesson over and over again until we get it right. Thank You that you have a way of redemption for us all, through Your Son Jesus. Thank You that we can praise You, and do so in spirit and in truth, because we recognize our inadequacy, and in turn our desperate need for You. Help us all to rid ourselves of the pretenses and trust fully in You alone. I’m Your precious name I pray, Amen