Originality is the sauce that makes the familiar fascinating.
Originality is the sauce that makes the familiar fascinating.
The secret of all failure is disobedience.
I can’t even begin to describe the incredible ways in which God has grown me, intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, you name it, these past two weeks. Well, my whole life, really—but especially these past two weeks. Wow.
So, I’m a crier, naturally. I’m super sensitive; I get upset easily. But these past two weeks, something in me has changed. I’m learning. I’m learning that when certain things happen, when I remember certain painful things, that the world isn’t turning upside down. That I’m okay. That I’ll get through this and all I need to do is look to Jesus, and His peace comes over me. Truly. I’m amazed at the victory that God has given me just in these past two weeks in that regard. That life is so much more relaxed when I don’t fuss over being tired and having so much to do and I don’t know what’s going to happen and this and that and yada yada yada. I’ve learned on a completely different level how powerful God’s Word really is. That it is true. That if I keep my mind stayed on God, He’ll keep me in perfect peace. That certain things are really not as big a deal as I often make them out to be, and that I don’t have to cry over them. I just have to stop, and think, and realize it’s okay. And sometimes even laugh about it. And granted, sometimes things aren’t okay. But God is still good and still in control.
And yet, saying all that, I learned another valuable lesson today. That even though I can get through things without crying (not getting so emotional about things is unfamiliar territory for me), that sometimes, tears are okay. That tears aren’t always a sign that I’m freaking out and not trusting God and throwing myself a pity party. That sometimes it’s okay to truly grieve over a situation and understand and experience the depth of feeling without that turning into bitterness or fear or panic. That even through the tears I can see God’s beauty and mercy and sovereignty and look up and say “Thank You” through the salty blur.
Tears are not always the opposite of trust. And sometimes, just that reminder that I’m human—that I have that ability to feel so strongly and deeply—just makes me feel alive. And that much closer to my Creator, who created me so complexly, in His image.
Thank You, God.
“Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised. For, ‘Yet a little while, and the coming one will come and will not delay; but my righteous one shall live by faith, and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.’ But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.”
Hebrews 10:35-39 ESV
This is exactly what I needed right. now. God is so good.
Okay, I know this is my third tumblr post in the span of like, an hour. But, I just couldn’t pass this up! After I just posted that last entry (Aha!), I came across this in Malachi:
“I the LORD do not change.” (Chapter 3, verse 6).
Seriously?? So cool. I mean, I already knew it was in the Bible, but just to read it right then, after I had just written about, because I “happen” to be reading Malachi right now, was pretty awesome.
People who argue with God rarely receive blessings from God. It’s when our mouth is stopped and we submit to His will that we can experience the grace of God (Rom 3:19).
(from The Bible Exposition Commentary: Old Testament © 2001-2004 by Warren W. Wiersbe. All rights reserved.)
Have you ever had one of those moments where you realize that you’ve learned something big, and you need to get it out so that you don’t forget about it? That’s how right now feels.
I’m reminded once again, and yet it never ceases to amaze me, that God is not only holy, but whole. He is complete, unchanging. He never has to learn or unlearn anything. He is never broken, never having to work toward a deeper level of intelligence, maturity. He always has been, always is, and always will be. He is the Great I AM. Everything He does has a purpose, and that purpose is always the same in all of those who love Him: good. He works all things together for good. That passage in Romans also goes on to say that we were predestined to be conformed to the image of Jesus.
What is good? God is good. And God is whole. And since Jesus is God, and we are to be conformed to His image, we’re being conformed to wholeness. God tells us that in Jeremiah: His plans for us are for wholeness, not for evil. I’m realizing that more and more. Wholeness is good. Because of sin, we’re fragmented beings; we can’t always put all the pieces together like God can. And we can never attain complete wholeness apart from Him. We often can’t understand how flat tires, or cancer, or divorce, or loss, or betrayal, or any other difficulty can possibly be used for good, especially in the midst of those situations. But they are meant to bring us to wholeness: to develop in us patience, trust, faith, peace… if we let them. In other words, if we choose to believe the truth: that God will keep in perfect peace the one who trusts in Him; that if we are not anxious but thankfully bring everything to Him in prayer, He’ll give us unexplainable peace.
It’s times like right now where I see God obviously working in my life that I’m reminded that He’s always at work, and that there’s always a purpose in what He does—and that that purpose is for good. I’m taking a class on educational psychology right now, and also going through training to be a volunteer at DayBreak, a pregnancy resource center. It’s amazing how the material I’m simultaneously learning in the two experiences correlates with one another. And it’s amazing how something I learned through personal Bible study a few months ago pops up and I see its application in a new light, referring to a different situation. Man, this is good stuff! I just get so excited about learning, especially how it pertains to how God is working in my life. His timing is just so spot on. And these times will help me to remember that in other times when I just can’t see it—when I just can’t see how something could possibly be used for good, or could possibly happen at the right time.
Ugh, I am just bursting. I can’t contain it and feel like I could write a whole book about this stuff. And again, I’m thankful for times like these, because I know it’s not all the time I’ll feel this way. I haven’t always felt this way. But getting excited about truth motivates me to remember the power of truth even when the feelings aren’t there. And often times, focusing on the truth will help turn emotions around. When I focus on truth, on God, I remember that I don’t have to get angry, or worried, or depressed. And then peace comes, like God promises it will. There’s a C.S. Lewis quotes that talks about this that I just love:
Mmm, good stuff. Not always easy to remember, because our natural inclination—I know my natural inclination—is to pout and worry and say, “Why, God, why?” in those difficult moments. But if we think hard enough, we know the answer: for our good, to make us more like Jesus—to bring us toward wholeness.