Chris Tomlin O Come all Ye Faithful

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Hard Day's Night

Early this morning (well, earlier this morning...seeing as it's 4:00 AM now.  And no. I never sleep.) Anyway, earlier this morning, I visited a post written by my friend, Nan, on her blog  Morning Glory  (do me a favor, don't click the links until you have read this post through, then go back and enjoy them).  As I read her post, I saw really, at first only one thing: the words, "Come to me, O weary one, and I will give you rest."  That line, based on a verse I'd known all my life, brought me to tears. I crumbled.

You see, I hadn't realized exactly, until that moment, how very tired I really am.  Not only physically tired--after a sleepless week on prednisone which causes one to rev high and fast, making sleep impossible--but also emotionally spent.  It's been several days of personal catastrophe, financially speaking.  And yet, God had providentially supplied the money for most of the things--the urgent things anyway--before they even occurred.  So we wouldn't worry too much.  Nonetheless so many things went wrong; so many things quit working or broke that I found myself holding my breath waiting for the whole wardrobe to drop...never mind the other shoe.

And those aren't the only ways I'm tired.  Spiritually I'm spent.  And if you  know anything about my God; my God of endless supply and abundant strength, you will know that there's something wrong with this picture.  And there is.  What is wrong is that I've been trying too hard to fix myself.  To go it alone.  Just. To. Get. By. just to breathe my next breath (and believe me, this week, that in itself, physically, has been a great challenge); to take the next step; to face the next day.  I've been on an emotional rollercoaster - zooming between determination and efforts to "psych" myself into the needed motivation to control my out of control weight gain, and complete despair and the sense that the struggle is pointless and futile.

And do you know where this has led me?  This self-effort?  To going to the fridge in the middle of the night...and reaching into the freezer for a ciabata roll, and thinking, "I'm really not hungry...but I need this roll-- then thinking, "It's really not honoring to God to eat this roll, after all I just polished off a piece of rich chocolate cake my husband brought home from work for me...In fact, this is downright greed."  And my next thought?
I don't care.  I need this roll!  I want it.  I have to have it.

Did you see that?  Do you know what it's called?  Rebellion.  Putting myself  and my physical desires above God.  Do you know what God calls that?  idolatry: the worship of something other than God. (see: Colossions 3:5)  I quickly squelched the quick rise of guilt that came with that thought...took the roll from the microwave. ---And ate it.

The apple in the garden.

A choice for other than God.

A short time later I sat in front of the PC (since my laptop was among the fatalities of the day) and clicked on Nan's log.  I cried over the words I quoted above...then I clicked on the other songs.  And the last song contained a phrase that knocked me right between the eyes:

"In the moment of my weakness, you give me GRACE to do your will.....There is no one else (no thing, I would add.)  for me--none but Jesus."  (by Hillsong: None but You, Jesus)

What was I lacking in that moment of weakness, as I stood in my nightgown in front of the microwave?  God's Grace. Grace is unearned favor or an unearned gift to us from God.  In other words, if I hadn't tried to meet that temptation out of my own dwindling supply of strength, I would have had the ability to meet it head-on...And walk away form the kitchen...empty handed and triumphant.  And this same principle has been true in every other aspect of my life.

As a result, I'm burned out.  washed out.  weakened in every way.

I clicked on a blogpost I'd written on my other blog: Flying Faith, Muddy Trenches.  and I re-read it...Then I scrolled down to the one beneath it. Memory Monday.  A post giving a memory verse for the week...and I re-read the verse: 

Hebrews 10:35-36

New Living Translation (NLT)     
 35 So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! 36 Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.
And my heart echoed a resounding "YES!"  Trust in HIM, not in yourself or your own reserves of strength...Patiently endure...and you will continually  do God's will.  THEN you will receive his many promises.
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