My blog has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 2 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Friday, February 2, 2007

My Struggle

I did my homework! Yeah!

It is always a confidence booster when I actually do something I have committed to. This may seem strange to anyone reading this who hasn't struggled with discipline in their past.

What can I say? I have been prone to rebel against things that are very good for me in my past. Thankfully in recent years the Lord has been working on that very serious character deficiency in me. I can now stand before anyone and confidently say that I consistently have my devotional time with the Lord daily. For some people that might sound like a no brain-er.... but for me it was just another thing I failed at.

For many years I allowed my emotions to determine my devotion (A very LAME way to walk with my Lord!!!) If I felt I had disappointed God, or if I was frustrated or disappointed I foolishly let myself drift in such emotional currents away from my God, my Anchor. I allowed every human carnal sin to redirect my thoughts to my failure instead of God's grace for me and His power over me.

It was just what my enemy wanted. Every bump in the road could interrupt my time with the Lord and shake my devotion. The Lord was always faithful to me and even graciously still spoke with me whenever I came to Him, but OH the time I lost and surrendered over to useless idleness when I could have had continued fellowship with my God all along! You see I failed to comprehend how big my God is! I discounted the truth that He deals with my failures and disappointments and is able to overcome them even though I, emotionally, may not be able to.

What I came to understand, as the Lord worked in me, is that I was making a fatal mistake. I was looking around me at all those faithful people I admired and wanted to be like and I was, in a backwards way, trying to become one of them by my own strength. I had to come to terms with the fact that up to that point I had not committed to doing the "face time" with the Lord which is required to be transformed by Him. I mean, it takes time to overhaul a seriously dysfunctional mindset. Truth takes time to saturate. I was impatient and was not submitting to the process. I somehow thought that I should just be able to will myself a stronger Christian and will for myself an unshakable faith. I hadn't submitted my thoughts over to him and I wasn't obedient and disciplined (unpopular words for many people, I know!)

Then God spoke to me. He caused me to realize that what I saw in these amazing people of faith and desired for myself so much, was not something they had which I never could, but it was the LORD himself. I, too, could have all of Him I wanted if I did things His way. The difference between myself and these "superstars" was that Christ, in them, had transformed them and the byproduct of Christ's transformation within them was the behavior I was witnessing. WE CANNOT KEEP FROM GLORIFYING HIM when HE gets a hold of us!

God made a way for me to grasp His love for me and His desire/ability to change me. It is called the Bible, the Holy Spirit, and prayer (Duh Jen!!!) It took many years for me to trust God more than my emotions and to learn the discipline of laying aside my emotions and my flawed way of thinking and just release myself over to Him. It began with simple stubborn prayers. In my anger I would confess to the Lord that I was mad at myself and mad at everything, but that I wanted Him more than anything else, that I needed to be delivered, and that I really needed Him to rescue me from myself. I committed to read His Word, the Truth, despite my emotions or circumstances and to trust His Holy Spirit to do what He says the Spirit will do when we submit ourselves to Him. Guess what girls....... It worked! HA! HE is so FAITHFUL!! As time went on I began to see the enemy's schemes clearly and I saw how I had fallen for them in the past. I saw how destructive my thinking had been and how it was not glorifying God.

Baby steps became confident strides.

One day I was asked by a friend how often I did my devotional time and I was completely caught of guard by the dreaded question. I was sitting there trying to remember the last time I had MISSED my devotional time when my husband jumped in for me and said "every day!" I was shocked. A part of me was trying to back away from that statement, "Am I really there? Have I become......disciplined?" I thought.

In the car on the way home I asked Dustin why he said that out loud and he told me "Because I see you every night reading and praying- you do it every day." WHOOO HOOO ladies, I have arrived! What I thought I could never do I am doing (largely without realizing it) because God has picked me up and given me strength. He really does want me to have the desires of my heart and if I really trust Him enough to do things His way, and not my own, I receive everything He promises. WOW!

If you find yourself in that place where it is a struggle to meet God in prayer and in reading the Bible, I want to tell you DO NOT GIVE UP, GIVE IN! Give in to Jesus and let Him drive the boat. Maybe your like me and you don't know how to let go. He can handle that too. My prayer is that you will be drawn in by His amazing love for you and that you will be swept up in His majesty and romance. I most of all desire that we ladies will spend time with the Lord daily, a priority which I pray will usurp even the study homework, because the Lord is worth our time and He is worth placing first in our daily priorities.

I used to have major struggles, but I have learned something awesome: The Lord has benefits!
For me, sanity is one of them!!!!!