Thank you Lord God for blessing me so much. And as I just read what Maria's comments to me were, it isn't about me. But still. Really. I mean, REALLY! All those years, all those tears and all those fears and now this, contentment in all things and blessing upon blessing upon blessing. And not that all my prayers are answered. Indeed, there are things that I want, things that I need You to uphold and things I wanna do that I don't know if the motivations are from You, or what the time frame should be, but something is DIFFERENT now than in the past.
Remember the past years of those tears and fears and crying on my belly, yelping to You and trying to control You but You didn't change anything that I could see right then. It was like You were a big PAPA whose baby girl was crying with her blankie shouting, "BUT DON'T YOU CARE AND CAN'T YOU SEE AND WHY DON'T YOU DO ANYTHING!!!" And You just stood there and didn't even pick me up sometimes and just let me cry.
"Are You done yet?"it was as if You had said to me.
But other times, You would just hold me - like when I wasn't doing anything but plugging along in the day, or I was just waking up, or singing a love song at church and You let me know that NOTHING ELSE MATTERED. Even if everything fell down, nothing else matterred because You were there and You were my God. And there would be a still small hope, no, a big hope. Yes, the only hope that there is!! The hope of Jesus Christ in me, who is my life, and everything would be okay, I would think, and if if it wasn't, You were and are the God who sees, the God who is there and You are enough for me.
And then things and situations for me were quiet for a long, long time. Like You and I were walking together in the woods, hand in hand and just looking at the bugs and the mountains and the trees. Jumping into the lake and swinging on a swing hanging from a tree limb. And You had become my God, my Friend, my Confidant, my Defender and my every day simple life. And it was enough. And the problems faded into the distance as the Lord became my world of what I saw, cared about and was invested in.
And in that world, in that forest green, in the presence of God, He had become my great reward and enough for me, even though, even though, even though there were all of the problems that hadn't much changed. But I changed. Because I had heard God. "It's going to be okay at some point. Those problems aren't your whole world. Come, walk with Me."
Then, I was able to hear You even more clearly. Not that You were giving me distinct impressions all of the time, but I had entered into Your world and had developed eyes to see. Like a dog alert due to training for His master’s actions. You could guide me with Your eye. “Ahh, so that is what You are doing. So that is how it works. So that is what is happening,” I would realize more and more often.
But my hearing wasn't perfect. And sometimes it isn't very good. And I don't always hear right. Like the dog who jumps up and down every time the master opens the drawer that contains the leash, but the dog hasn’t discerned that not every time that drawer is opened is it time to go on a walk. I guess I am not equiped to write a book of the Bible (if there were any more available to be written, which there are not) because I am not a Prophet in that sense. I am not perfect. Well, that is obvious.
But more than that, I found that, I find now that, if I can get myself into a humble position, I can better know, hear and follow God – better see to be guided by His eye. If I can seek to emulate Jesus, and follow after godly role models that He has given me and not try to recreate the wheel and try to put my signiture on it ("Wheel made by Andrea: buy one get one at 50% off")then I can wander less and abide more and hear better and enjoy the walk in the forest with my Father, paved by Jesus Christ.
And today, and yesterday and last week it has been this new thing of blessings that I first spoke about in this writing. That of blessings flowing down, and part of those blessings is the sense that we are clicking. That I finally have become positioned in a really good place to be effective, like the antennae set just right. Yet, You are ever changing in a sense, and there is no "set way" to "know God" other than, abiding in Him by humility, prayer, Bible reading, fellowship with a church and other believers and trying to do what He says and go where He seems to be leading. Not running ahead of God, but moving forward. Hebrews says He is not pleased with one who shrinks back away from His leading. So readers and fellow bond-servants, I encourage you to go where He says to go and obey right away.
And my problems are mostly still here, but I can literally SEE by faith how You are changing them and what You are doing, and I can see that they are going to be okay at some point. But some of the problems aren’t here any more, because You have moved and acted on my behalf in so many ways. And the problems that remain are necessary for the training and instructing of me and my family in righteousness because that is how You operate. And I am praying that You will spare us from excess or fruitless suffering and harm from bad outcomes before that final point when everything is okay is reached.
But I am not paniced anymore and I am not balling and sobbing at the Lord's feet demanding my way and panicing that my (notice “MY”) world is falling apart and He is not doing anything about it. So yeah, I have faith. But it is faith received - His faith, and not based upon my personal observation of things, but based upon my knowledge of His kingdom’s view of things, so it doesn't even feel like faith, because it seems real, yet it is an evidence not seen.
So, Lord, I realize that I am conversating with You, but also to my audience. God bless them. Father, I pray that they would be encouraged that suffering is a normal and expected part of the Christian experience, and You train us up through discipline and that as Paul said, "I have learned to be content in whatever the circumstance," so too You want us to become more and more like that.
Father, enable me not to be like a ship tossed in the ocean, rocking to and fro, but to be like Paul, content in whatever cirsumstance. Yet Father, I ask for Your mercy upon me, to remember that I am but flesh. Ahh, but I am spirit also – and I have Your spirit in me. I trust You that whatever circumstance that You put me in, or allow me to go in, that You will provide Your blessed Holy Spirit to strengthen and guide me. You are faithful and have not left us without Yourself to guide and protect us. Protect me from tempatation and the evil one.
Father, I lay these requests before You: The Management School and all of those details - guide me into Your will for that; The ECT training and details of implementaion; the fall Precepts Bible Study, who will come and how will they be invited, the details of learning and teaching and opportunity to do so, open doors and Your Holy Spirit's direction; my fitness and exercise opportunities and desires including "Christian yoga" and where, how, preparedness and details as well as my nutrition and diet; that You would carry out all that You are doing in each of my children's lives, that they would become the righteousness of Christ by submitting their desires to Your will, including submitting to the training that You have for each of them in their lives at this time, that they would be good and faithful soldiers of Jesus and God would have Your way with them each individually and corporately; that my husband's business, career, mindset, daily responsibilities, habits, thoughts and duties would be held in Your hand just as You turn the King's heart like a faucet; that I would pray faithfully inasmuch as I can attain; that You would provide for the details of my husband's 50th birthday party in December; that the entire family would be in the world but not of the world and would be protected from the evil one and would go forth in the name and presence and life-blood of Jesus Christ, becoming conformed to His death and serving and making disciples of people near and far and very far by the power of the resurection. In Christ's name and for His eternal fame and glory alone, Amen.