My head knows that as a Christian we are never promised an easy walk, in fact its the opposite. Trials and tribulations act like a furnace used to strengthen steel, so do the tribulations that we go through in our life....big and small. They serve to strengthen us, and refine us, making our hearts pure and focused more fully on God. The book of James is ripe with such words of encouragement, and yes even admonitions that we count all things as JOY. That we find GLORY in the struggles because at the end of the day, when all seems lost and gone and the world scorns us, we can count ourselves blessed because we belong to GOD.
But, oh this is hard to do, isn't it?
My self, or my heart, wanted everything to be easy and fall into place the way I wanted them to.
I questioned God when things didn't fall into place like I THOUGHT it should. I asked God the Father what did I do, what did my husband do, what could we do differently, why was this happening to US .... do you see a pattern? I do, I was asking about I, ME, WE..... Selfish! God never said it would be easy, look to Israel in the book of Exodus. They thought it should be like a cake walk and the minute it wasn't what did they do? And then what happened to them as a consequence? Yep.... Not so different today are we? We want everything to be handed to us when we want it. We ask God to show us His will and then we get angry when it 1) doesn't match our will or 2) takes longer to occur than WE think it should. We speak a good word saying we want God's will, but when the rubber meets the road, we falter. We question and second guess the very one we say we are waiting on.... yeah, patience is not something many of us have in abundance, me especially.
Doesn't seeing that in black and white just look selfish? Well, I was selfish. I worried about what others would think. I was embarrassed that as a Christian things weren't going smooth and like clock work. I was worried more about how others would view me than really doing God's will. I didn't think that at the time.
In my defense (if I have any), there were contributing factors. Some people close to our family hinting or saying that we were going against God in even coming down this road. Like how the ease and speed that our house sold, even as we were contemplating removing it from the market, was not of God. Constant questioning of my Hubs ability to care for his family by some was also nagging at me. My head said "who cares as long as we are headed in the direction that God has us going", but my selfish side worried; worried not that we weren't going in God's direction so much as worried what others would think.
In James 3 we also read about the self seeking heart. Verse 16 in the King James version reads, "For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there." What James is telling us is to yield to God's will and seek His wisdom. The book of James really asks us to look at our lives, our own hearts. Considering the book of James I can't help but do this. In Bible class we were recently asked to name some favorite books of the Bible, in hindsight James would be listed near the front. As much as it pains one to admit they need a cleanse, James admonishes us to do just that. What's the point of a health cleanse without a heart cleanse as well?
I am not sure that I have conquered this, but I am trying and praying that God gives me the strength as we open this new book. I am praying that I leave it all in His capable hands, and let him guide us and my husband.
Next Friday I share about one of the lowest times through this time and how our life as we know it was only saved through God's grace and love.