Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Part Two: Trust in the Lord with All Your Heart

If I am completely honest, I will tell you I have been feeling the weight of the past few weeks. Stressful events have been piling up and I find myself thinking about them when driving, doing chores, etc. Most of the time, these reflections bring forth nothing useful. They only let me know the things that have happened over the past few weeks bother me on some level. I might not even fully understand why. Other occasions of meditation present some “ah ha!” moments, though! Those I will share with you:

1. I can only take responsibility for myself. In 2001, my husband and I bought our first house. I was, of course, very excited but had no idea for what I was signing up. The house we took on was advertised as a “new” home, and was indeed only three years old, however it should have been classified as a “fixer upper”. It had, and probably still has, some major contractor issues. Just to name a few, a couple large windows leaked, and possibly still do, profusely when it rains. We had to replace the flooring in the home at least once because of it. A water pipe broke and flooded the house when it was nine years old so we had to have the floors replaced then, too, and portions of the wall repaired. Further, it had an electrical problem which could have burned the house down. Saying this house took, and most likely still takes, a LOT to maintain it would be an understatement. I believe it is fair to say, though I truly love it, it is very costly, unpredictable, and not safe. It put great strain on me, and my husband, and could have hurt my children. As much as I love that house, I had to leave it. As hard as we tried to keep up with and fix all of its defects and areas of concern, we could not. It was too exhausting and costly. Unfortunately, situations and relationships can be the same way. And I, as much as I would love to be able to wiggle my nose and have everything miraculously repaired and functioning properly, can only do my part...as limited as that may feel. The rest is out of my hands (Psalm 37:5, Psalm 55:22, Psalm 118:8, Matthew 6:25, Proverbs 16:3, Proverbs 3:5, etc.)

2. A change of heart does not always look the way I assume it will. When I think of asking God to “change my heart” I usually envision it to mean I need to love more, accept more, submit more, tolerate more, etc. Yet, on occasion, that is not the correct way to go at all! There are seasons that call for “tough love”. And, as much as I hate it and find it absolutely uncomfortable and unpleasant it is necessary when the circumstances call for it. The bible is full of event recaps of individuals, and God, having to give “tough love”.

3. God is always doing 10,000 things, as John Piper put it, at any given moment. I can only see a small portion of the artwork...a Monet, if you will. To me, it looks like a bunch of dots of many different colors and I seriously just don’t get it! What the heck are all of these stinkin’ specks supposed to mean? But God, at his distance and holiness, can see the entire picture. Further, His orchestration is flawless and His placement of the dabs is truly, breathtakingly beautiful!

4. God hears my / our prayers. This one is the most important! I read a comment that someone made recently, on a social network, stating prayer does nothing. This, of course, broke my heart. I firmly believe prayer is one of the most important tools we have in our tool box. Faith is right up there with hope and love. Though the greatest of them is love (1 Corinthians 13:13).

I sincerely meant to wrap up this series, which I started on Monday, 13 June 2016. However, God has a better plan, of course, and so it continues...in the next post.

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