Do you ever have days where it feels like if just one more small drop of stress gets added to your life you are just going to spill out over the edges and make a mess of things?
Well today has been one of those days. So I am hiding, avoiding, pretending not to exist.
It began yesterday, no it was Tuesday, and a day of discovery, of deflation, of difficult revelations to ponder it was, much to my chagrin. For as I was praying in the early morning quiet, I was ever so sweetly blind sided by God. You see, I appear to have been focusing on heaven on earth as my desire, rather than taking the long view of eternity. Thus He made me aware that my entreaties for the salvation of unbelieving family and friends have been prompted by what they, and let’s be honest, myself, could gain from their receiving His saving grace here on earth.
I mean wow, how shallow, how on the surface, is my faith I have to ask. Do I honestly not take the notion of heaven and hell seriously? Hum….for I can see how my focus has truly been the seeking of the tranquility and comfort that comes from residing in Christ. He is the calm in the eye of the storm of stress that is my life, and the notion of my loved ones spending an eternity apart from Him, in a void without love, suffering in hell, just does not bring about peaceful easy feelings, and it should not.
I then have to add to this the unwelcome, yet trivial in comparison, realization that I have such physical limitations. I thought I had improved. It seemed like I was getting so much done. I mean the motivation was there, it is not always, and the opportunity or time was there, it is not always, but right after the crushing blow regarding the self centered nature of my faith, I was then made aware that not only was I not getting more done, for what I was accomplishing was just different, not also, or in addition too, nothing had changed, or improved but my desire for change, and that the limitations are still, and will always be, hanging around….sigh. But really God I could have waited for this one on a different day. Why the double whammy?
What has this got to do with anything, and why am I sharing it? Good question. Perhaps I just felt compelled to write tonight and this is what is on my mind. Perhaps it was only for me to see how insignificant the issue of my physical well being is when compared with the state of my spiritual well being, and the double dose of sorrow I believed he gave me was in reality a gift of kindness and perspective. Perhaps it is purely self indulgence on the loose. Perhaps it is nothing. What ever it is, I do know this, I am not special, I am ordinary, and if I am having this quandary others are too, it is not new or unheard of, and has been around forever, and I find that belonging, being one with the multitudes, a very comforting notion.
However, most importantly, God does not demand perfection. He loves me as I am and His sacrificial death has covered my multitude of sins, and as He has stated: “Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
How can I despair and give up when I am loved this way, and I pray that He will teach me to love this way too, to care, to share, to break the surface on purpose and pour myself out. To get to that place where I only look up to heaven, rather than down to myself. I also know that no matter how pitiful and dim this little light of mine is flickering, the Lord can use it for good. Even if I cannot comprehend the how of it.