Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Trusting Through the Trials

Sometimes things happen in my life that make absolutely no sense to me, and to be completely honest, sometimes those things drive me completely nuts! I struggle a lot with questioning God, with sometimes almost demanding him to explain himself to me…as if I have any right to say to God, “Why? Why in the world are you allowing this to happen to me? It makes no sense to me.” Obviously I have no right to do that; no one does…God doesn’t answer to me; he doesn’t answer to anyone. Things don’t need to make sense to me right now, and actually, some things will never make sense to me this side of heaven, and that’s ok. God is in complete control over every aspect of my life; he is sovereign over all. That’s all I need to know, and that should be enough for me.

Now notice I said “should,” not “is.” I am absolutely nowhere near perfect and I struggle A LOT with grasping that concept. During the trials when God is often pushing and pulling me in all directions, I tend to have an attitude in which I’m kicking and screaming my way through it all at the beginning, before eventually arriving at a place of peace, resting in the fact that God is holding me through it all, no matter how difficult, or sometimes unfair, things may seem. I so badly want to arrive at a place where I’m at total peace throughout the trials of life, from the very beginning, but I also understand that it is a total learning process, and that God will give me plenty of opportunities in which to grow in that area :-)

“God knows that you can withstand your trial, or else He would not have given it to you. His trust in you explains the trials of your life, no matter how severe they may be. God knows your strength, and He measures it to the last inch. Remember, no trial has ever been given to anyone that was greater than that persons strength, through God, to endure it.” (Streams in the Desert) That last part is key- “through God.” I often lean on my own strength to get through life, which then causes me to question God because things seem so overwhelming to me. It’s when I lean fully on the Lord, and draw strength from him alone, that I am filled with peace…all questioning leaves my mind, and I’m satisfied with him alone, because I know that I’m resting in the grip of my Savior and am able to truly trust in the fact that he has it all under control and is truly working ALL things for good, (Romans 8:28) no matter how confusing or unfair things appear in my limited human perspective.

“Difficulties and obstacles are God’s challenges to our faith. When we are confronted with hindrances that block our path of service, we are to recognize them as vessels for faith and then fill them with the fullness and complete sufficiency of Jesus. As we move forward in faith, simply and fully trusting Him, we may be tested. Sometimes we may have to wait and realize that “perseverance must finish its work” (James 1:4) but ultimately we will surely find the stone rolled away and the Lord Himself waiting to bestow a double blessing on us for our time of testing.” (Streams in the Desert) A double blessing…how cool is that? What God, in a sense, “takes” from me, he will restore back to me in an even greater capacity.

Trials come to make you grow in your faith…there’s always a purpose behind everything that happens to you…it’s a matter of keeping the right perspective through the hard times and the difficulties, and really trusting the Lord to keep his word, and to eventually reveal his purpose behind it all…even if that doesn’t happen during our time on earth. Jesus is more than enough…and it is in the midst of the trials of life that God so lovingly reminds us of that unwavering, and completely comforting fact.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Why Me?

I really need to get back into journaling/blogging on a regular basis. God really uses my writing to speak to me and reveal himself to me, and yet I hardly ever take the time to sit down and write.

The Lord has really placed on my heart the need to spend more time meditating on Psalm 139. The Lord knows everything about me-the good and the bad. That is sometimes a scary thought, but at the same time, very comforting, humbling, and amazing. I am seriously in awe that God chooses to love me in spite of my wretched sinful nature-my prideful heart, my arrogant attitude, my laziness, my selfishness, and my sometimes blatant disregard for his commandments and will for my life. Why would the Lord choose to save me and love me? It's humbling to think about.

To be a recipient of his grace, to know that I am forever spared from the fires of hell should continually fill me with praise and thanksgiving...so why doesn't it? Because I'm proud; because I can sometimes fall into the trap of thinking that I'm a good person; that I deserve to receive good things from the Lord. That couldn't be further from the truth. I don't deserve anything. There is nothing good in me apart from the Lord. The fact that he chose me to be one of his own for eternity is amazing and I should be living my life daily in such a way which reflects my thanksgiving and praise for that.