The cycle carries on, but not as a circle as some treat it. No, you are not passing the same points in the road, but slightly different ones. We experience life as a spiral, passing through similar yet different points on the road. Every time you see something that is very much like something else you have seen before, you choose whether to react better than you did before. And so obedience, when repeated, builds itself up, like the strong foundation Jesus told us about:
“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”
When I obey the Lord, I can rest in the knowledge that He is pleased. Not that I receive all I ask for necessarily, but being open to His ways, I am less inclined to cling to my way. When I realize (again) that I love to be blessed, my confidence increases. Even though I don’t know exactly what I am doing all the time, it is easier it is to make the next choice in favor of the Lord because I trust Him. By this my obedience also increases and it is easier it is to make the next choice in favor of the Lord. And when it’s not easy, which most of the time it is not, I am still seeking wisdom. And fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalms 111:10).
The airport always reminds me of this great sermon i heard by Steven Furtick from elevation church called “Hubs and Spokes”. The main point was that sometimes God needs to “send” you to a certain place until you’re ready for what he has in store. I think it was in a series about waiting on the Lord, and boy have I needed that message in the past few years. Sadly i confess i have spent much of the last 2 years complaining and whining about not having what I wanted, which was to be married to my boyfriend. It’s always easier to say that in hindsight, and now that I have the ring on my finger (thanks be to God!) NEW desires have been placed on my heart. To be a devoted wife, a loving mother, a gracious hostess, perhaps a bible study leader, looking ahead to the new church and circles of friends we will encounter when we move in together. These are just the few things that occur to me now, but I’m sure there are more.
However I feel the most important at this moment is to continue to seek after Jesus and grow up in faith under his watchful eye. I naturally undulate between dissatisfaction and contentment so I pray harder than ever that this can be a particularly fruitful time of sweetness and growth.
Is God good when I get what I want? Is He still good when I don’t get what I want?
At first glance, I want to say “All the time”. But wait, is that true for me? Do I actually live my life like God is good, or do I stomp my feet and cry like a petulant child when I don’t get my way? This is a question that takes some soul-searching.
In this season of my life I just can’t seem to get over the very logical fact that I do not have the same life path as others. I have plans for myself that very obviously are not the same God has in mind for me. I know this because if they were, they would have happened already.
I’m struggling to accept it and work on myself and keep up the faith in the mean time, but my selfish childish voice inside can’t understand it. My being is absolutely divided-I want but cannot have.
2 I will stand at my watch
and station myself on the ramparts;
I will look to see what he will say to me,
and what answer I am to give to this complaint.[a]
The Lord’s Answer
2 Then the Lord replied:
“Write down the revelation
and make it plain on tablets
so that a herald[b] may run with it.
3 For the revelation awaits an appointed time;
it speaks of the end
and will not prove false.
Though it linger, wait for it;
it[c] will certainly come
and will not delay.
I read this blog post from Lysa TerKeurst this morning, and it totally spoke to me:
No matter how many times I whispered over and over, “there’s no way,” this nagging sense of possibility wouldn’t leave me. It wove its way through every fiber of my being until I stood up and shifted everything I thought my family would be with one weakly whispered, “Yes.”
Aren’t there so many times in our lives when, presented with a seemingly crazy choice, we say “There’s no way…” It’s the choice between stability and uncertainty. Would I quit my job and become a missionary? Quit school to write for God? Sometimes the idea is so far away from what we imagine for ourselves that it gets immediately rejected before it has a chance to take hold. It’s probably true that “there’s no way” in my power, but Lysa reminds us of Jesus’ promise that He is the way.
“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6)
If God is calling on you to do something for Him, there is a way — His way. I will trust in the Lord and lean not on my own understanding.