Sunday, May 8, 2016

Walls of self effort...

Ever heard that saying, "God wouldn't have allowed it unless He had a purpose.  Don't just go through it--grow through it." ?  Well, I'm trying.  Maybe that's the trouble...too much striving.

I'm currently writing my counseling and theology exams for biblical counseling certification.  It has been a long and arduous process.  I think I was kind of delusional naive as I finished writing them last month and headed into the proofreading and editing phase.  

Yup, I hit another one of those walls of self effort.  I say God's timing is perfect...and it is...but I really wanted my timing.  I am constantly struck by the antagonism of the concept of trusting God and yet working out your salvation.  I want to obey Him and complete this training...I don't think I should just wait for lightning to strike or information to fall out of the sky...ya gotta have a plan, right?  True...but its got to submit to Him too.

So, when blessed with two mentoring editors...instead of being full of gratitude and encouragement...instead, I bawled at the first sight of the work still left ahead of me.  Several questions I can't answer until I study...more.  Not total re-writes...but ALOT more work still to go.  I know better than to ask why me.  I knew some of the questions needed work.  I want to grow through this time.  Sometimes I feel stretched and about to break.  I'm a full sponge unable to hold another drop.  I can't juggle it all.  And, that's kind of the point.

WHAM...wall of self effort.  It could be easier though.

You see, I'm all over Phil. 2:12, "Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear...but I forget about v. 13, "For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him."  I need to work out with fear and trembling what God is working in me; the desire and power to do what pleases Him.  He needs to become greater, I need to become less.  When I pray for His Kingdom to come...that means NOT my kingdom.  That evidently means NOT sending in exams until Fall...that means pausing and refocusing to make sure wife and mommy are really on top where they should be before student.

The only place to bring my weariness and heavy burdens is Christ.  He is humble and gentle of heart and has redeeming power to give me true rest for my soul.  Jesus' yoke is demanding, but easy because of his heart toward me and the empowering Holy Spirit 

Steadfast was the word I chose as the focus for my 2016.  I knew I had a lot before me on this journey...I chose it wanting to be steadfast for God.  I have been learning that I can't be steadfast without trusting first in His steadfast love.  Each morning He faithfully reminds me, showing me the eternal perspective, lifting my eyes.

Oh Lord,
Fill my heart with gratitude for Your truly perfect timing.  You are good to those who hope in You and seek You.  It is good to wait quietly for the Lord of my Salvation.  Oh Lord are a Mighty Savior.  You take delight in me.  You will quiet me with Your love and sing over me.  Please stop my sinful strivings and change my heart to have a posture of rest before You.  

No comments: