Another blog post I had on my secret blog, that I’m ready to share… This was from November 11, 2012
James 1:2-8 (NIV)
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
So I used to do Bible quizzing. Yep, I was a super hyper turbo church girl. And I loved it. I got to travel all over Ontario with my teams and billet with interesting people, competing against other teams for Bible college scholarships.
James was the first book I memorized.
I’ve always loved it, and because I was so gung-ho about quizzing in the beginning, I memorized the entire book beginning to end.
We quizzed out of the New International Version, so all of my memorization is in the NIV. I went to pick up a new Bible on Friday as my dog ate mine (no word of a lie) and so of course I went straight for the NIV section and picked out a cute purple pleather quilted covered NIV.
I sat down this morning to read and my first instinct was to go soak up some James. The words have changed a lot, as they’ve updated it since I was in quizzing (which makes me feel old even though I’m 28) and I found myself a little disappointed.
I don’t like change, unless I’m the one initiating it. If people make even the most minute changes to things and I come back without having known, I feel thrown. This is likely the reason I’m struggling with going back to the church I grew up my whole life in, now that I live here again, because it has changed so much. I feel like it should still be exactly as it was and still is in my mind. Silly, I know. I have issues (don’t we all?) and it’s part of my brokenness. I like the things I love to stay the same or at least change with me. I don’t like going back to something different.
I loved this text because, although it wasn’t what I memorized verbatim, it seemed to speak more to me this time. I thought throwing in the “brothers and sisters” instead of “brothers” and changing “he” to “you/them” was unnecessary, and I’ve never been a feminist so I didn’t see the point.
But it spoke a little deeper to me.
The text came alive to me, not as me knowing the words about a man going through some hard times and being double-minded and all that – but I saw myself in it.
I’m going through trials of many kinds. Hokey snot am I ever. I NEED perseverance. I’m developing it a little more every day. Each morning when I get up and get ready and go to work, when all I want to do is stay in bed and cry and wallow in the current state of my broken life – I get a little bit stronger. I gain a little more perseverance.
And my problem has been trying to rush God’s work in my life.
“I’m ready, Lord! Bring on the good stuff now!”
He must roll His eyes and think “Oh, sweetie. You’re so silly.”
Let perseverance finish its work, so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Isn’t that what I’ve been asking for? Maturity? Spiritual and emotional? Completeness after years of brokenness? Fulfillment – nothing lacking? I continue to showcase a sense of entitlement to joy and peace and fulfillment, without actually doing all the leg work. I ask God to gimme gimme gimme… When He’s already given me the recipe for success in Him.
Yes, of course, the joy of the Lord is free in Christ, and it is MINE, and if it were not for it I would be lost. But the extra stuff – the maturity and completeness – that I have to work for.
In my case it’s been dating.
Blech. I hate to even admit it.
I’ve been on several dates since O and I separated. I think I’ve selfishly and at times naively thought that since he’s living with his new girlfriend, and I’m only going out on dates and not having sex, I’m better than he is and more holy.
I feel so old and wise but really, I’m a child.
When I continue to understand that I need to wait on the man God has for me, why do I feel the need to jump the gun and go for it? I became totally content to wait. After my relationship earlier this year with a beautiful man (R), I was afraid of hurting someone else by thinking I was ready and then pulling out when things got serious. So I put my nose to the grind, focused on my kids and my job, and I was getting better. I was finding who I am as a woman, as a mother, and in Christ.
I fall so quickly when I’m not focusing on prayer and meditation first, but just leaping into situations hoping they turn out for the best. You’d think I’d learn by now.
I’m tired of being tossed and thrown on the waves. I am craving peace… so I have to wait for it. When I hear Him whispering in my heart “Wait… Wait darling, I promise…” – I have to listen to that. Or I’m double-minded and can’t expect anything from God. I lived with bipolar for 8 years. The last thing I want is to become double-minded myself.
This fear I have in my heart is surely not from the Lord – the fear that tells me to hurry up and find a good Christian guy before they’re all taken. It’s so ridiculous! If God has someone perfect for me, he certainly won’t be perfect, as I most assuredly am not. He’s likely going through his own trials of many kinds – perhaps even the same struggles I’m facing. But if God is orchestrating it, then he’ll be ready the same time I am. It’s a relief to be able to give it up like that, and trust. How do people without faith do it?
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
God, I’m begging You for wisdom. I know I only have to ask You, but here I am on my knees crying out for You to show me Your will in my life. You will not fault me if I come to You in all sincerity, with all kinds of trust and faith in Your perfect will. Please… give me the grace to carry my head high when I feel so alone, and help me to find security in knowing YOU rather than having an arm to hold onto. I don’t want to find my identity in being a wife to a good man – I want to be found in You and ONLY You, and someday have you reward me with a man whose heart matches mine, to serve you as a team together with.
But there I go again. Aching for a husband.
Be the only man I need, Father…