I am admittedly a “baby Christian”. The knowledge that I have in my head has not yet saturated the peace and faith that I want to feel in my heart. Though I have decided to be obedient, I don’t always feels the joy, joy, joy down in my heart.
Often, I am around other Christians that seem to have a faith so strong, they are unshakable. Somewhat embarrassingly, that is not me most of the time. I want more of everything. I want more money, more friends, more time, more Jesus and more extremely clear guidance. I want heaven… but I also still want earth.
Since making an honest effort a few months ago to allow God’s will and plan for my life to be – I have done a lot of complaining and feeling sorry for myself. Hate to say it. It’s just the truth. My life has become far less glamorous, exciting and fast-paced that it was when I was living for myself. I suppose I expected that for at least some amount of time, but it has been longer than I would have chosen and my grumblings to The Father have increased.
I have always thought of myself as a Christian but it was not until recently that I’ve attempted to let go, or give up my will for my life, in favor of His will for my life. I am acutely aware of the spiritual battle going on inside me and yet… I have had numerous people tell me that they are seeing me change in ways that are more peaceful, kind and calm. You would think that I would interpret that as a positive affirmation – yet most of the time, it feels like a backhanded compliment.
Was I really so “bad” before?
As I struggle through these questions (and countless more) I find myself in a pouty obedience. I know too much to go back to numbing myself into an old way of thinking- yet also feeling as though I have not been properly rewarded for my submission to His commandments.
Like I said… I’m pouty.
So there I am. A downright brat to The One that gives me every breath, every minute on this earth and every single blessings. Grumpy- that He has not rewarded me enough for “giving Him” some (let’s be honest, I’m still holding on) of what was never mine and always His to begin with- my life.
Oh, I’m an obstinate little creature for sure.
Then, in the midst of my crabbiness He illuminates truth through other people. The woman who has no patience, the uncle who is full of pride, the friend who cannot forgive, the child who needs a double serving of tough love (and a few spankings). All these things I loathe… in others.
He must know I am blind to my own faults. He probably knows how easily I can see the issues in others. Sometimes people ask me for advice and He allows me to use His truth to comfort, guide and direct them to a better way of thinking. As advice and verses (from my limited Bible knowledge) flows from my mouth, I sometimes wonder who is talking. This is good advice. This is Biblical advice. I should take this advice myself.
Though the selfishness doesn’t always look the exact same- the principles behind the pain it creates are similar enough to make me aware of the ways I propagate my own turmoil and distance from God. Perhaps I’m little more patient than him, or a little more prideful than her, slower to forgive in that situation or quicker to let go of resentment in another- but whatever the case, I do it too. All of it. Bleck.
Once I see it in someone else, a virtual mirror appears and I am (usually) convinced to make a mental shift. An attitude adjustment, if you will. I muse over the irony- remembering that I too am sweating small stuff that won’t matter in 10 years, much less eternity. And for the next few days, hours or (sometimes only) minutes- however long I can discipline my mind… I find the peace and clarity He intended me to have always. And it’s pretty cool.
Would I prefer to hear the audible voice of The Lord? For sure.
Am I convinced following His will would be easier if He literally nudged me in the right direction? Indubitably.
Do I wish I could learn the lesson just once and not recreate the internal drama every time someone irritates me or things don’t “go right”? You betcha.
But for now… This is where I am. And this is how He reveals things to me. Through watching others be more (or less) selfish, short-sided and ridiculous than I am. It’s pretty brilliant actually.
Maybe the Creator Of All Things knows I like to figure things out for myself. And especially when I’m clinging to pridefulness? Pfft! No one can tell me anything about me. I’m justified.
Oh, but when I see it in someone else… Oops.
Dear Lord, please use all my feistiness for your glory somehow… But please also continue to be gentle with me. This is super hard for me and I’m a little scared to let go. Truth is… I’m not actually as tough as I seem… but I guess you already knew that. I’m sorry for being a brat. Thank you and I love you.