Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Good Book--updated and blather-heavy

This post should be longer and more fleshed out to cover all that is running through my head this AM. In my in-box was a prayer request from a dear friend who is going through a custody battle and divorce.

As I gave her my written assurance that I would pray, I remembered that I had "anchor verses" from the times in my life that I had gone through the same nonsense.

As I ::gasp:: opened the Bible! to seek the verses, so that I could share them with her, I was struck by a pasage of Scripture that I had highlighted at some point (I write all over my Bibles-comments, questions, dates, etc.):

Jeremiah 9:24

"Thus says the Lord,
...but let him who glories, glory in this,
that he understands and knows Me."

What acceptance I feel from reading that verse! Like letting out a breath I have held for soooo long.

Gotta go. More later.

It's much later...wow.

I think the reason that the verse above struck something in my heart was that I have struggled so with not understanding what God is doing in this season of my life and why.

When I first met Him, I was in a place of pretty desperate need and of that need, was born an amazing sense of intimacy. I felt that I knew God, my Father; Jesus, my Savior and my friend, the Holy Spirit.

I talked to God constantly; God talked to me (through the Bible, in my dreams, through friends, through sermons and teachings and studies, through circumstances, through nature...you get the picture). I journaled. I read. I worshiped. I learned. God and I were best friends.

I stayed on that mountain-top with God for the first 12 years of my Christian life. It was awesome. Others spoke of desert experiences, of cooled passion, of distance from God. I honestly had no idea how they could even say/believe/feel such things.

Because it had never been my experience, I just assumed I'd dodged a bullet. I thought was was special-er; God's favorite. Perhaps, because I had messed up so much *before* my conversion, I was to be spared additional heartache. Made sense to me. (this is the part where wise, seasoned Christians are throwing their heads back, roaring with laughter. God is likely smiling, as well. hehehe).

Anyhoo...three years in the desert later, I do not *feel* God often, I don't read His word (often), I have no idea what He is thinking or why He is acting the way He is (or isn't). I am confused. I am distant. I am lukewarm. I am weary and empty and dazed. Good times.

At this point, the Christian guilt machine has kicked into gear. As if it is not enough to simply be in the desert, we have to self-deprecate, whilst there. Sackcloth and ashes and all that.

The thoughts go a bit like this, "I wonder why God is giving me this desire in my heart, if He doesn't intend to fulfill the desire. Would He purposefully frustrate me? I bet if I read my Bible more, He'd move in my life. I remember when I was on fire for the Lord, it was amazing. Why can't I be like that again? If I would only trust Him more, I could get past this. I wonder what it is I'm supposed to be learning? If I would learn the lesson more quickly, I could get back to where I need to be"., and on and on and on.

So, I guess I've felt as though I (lately) was/am a big disappointment to God. I was embarrassed by my weaknesses. My struggles. My doubts. My inability to "just get over it". Or to just rest. And trust. And believe. Ugh.

Ever notice that even passive things (receiving and rest, for example), require active acceptance? This is work, people!

So, all that to say, it made me feel pretty darn good to read the verse above that says that it is OK to be the way I am, to ask questions, to doubt and search and seek and test.

I do want to know You, Lord.

Remember when?

Jeremiah 9:24

"Thus says the Lord,
...but let him who glories, glory in this,
that he understands and knows Me."

(photo is of my own beloved Bible)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Have you ever noticed the PSALM's that David wrote. He will start out questioning what is going on...why, etc. He then will come to an understanding, and he ends with PRAISES TO GOD thanking HIM for the struggles/trials etc. I found this amazing when I received a letter from a gal I was disicpling. Her letter read so like a Psalm of Davids. Her anger first poured out, then her acceptance, than her thanks. He is faithful in every situation and HE is knowing every thought and our heart. HE IS FAITHFUL to the end. I remember ...many, many years ago going through a seminar thing at church and we broke into groups. They handed out a photo of a Tree with people all over it, under it, above it, hanging on the limb, resting in the shade, climbing up it etc. They asked us to think of our walk with GOD and our Faith and where were we in the photo. I remember thinking it odd at the time that not everyone was where I was. Now, today, after many years and a few more gray hairs (what God says is wisdom) I see that I have been EVERYWHERE on that tree. It is a walk, a relationship, a process. A child of GOD is growing all the time and no two days, months, years or lifes (seperate people) are ever the same. The one thing we can know and boast of though is that HE does know us ... always... and HE always loves us. AMEN? AMEN! Sorry didn't mean to get so winded. Hope your trip is fun. love you long time! Me -the multi-colored fluff that learns to wait for the light upon the path. :o)