Lessons Learned 6 – It Is Worth It

As I struggled with each of the problems that I was facing, I began to feel like God had gone on vacation and was leaving me here to fend for myself.

I asked for guidance, direction, some kind of acknowledgment that He was here fighting for me.

I began wondering if I was doing everything wrong, and this was His way of bringing me back into line.

I felt abandoned, forsaken and alone.

And that feeling only added to my unhappiness.

I was in pain almost continuously, leaving me unable to do the most mundane things.

I could not lose weight no matter what I did. And every time I reset my resolve to exercise and eat right, something happened to knock me off track.

Everything that I tried to do or touch went wrong.

And I could not get away from any of it.

In the back of my mind I could hear all those TV preachers promising that if God wanted you to do something, he would supply everything you needed to do it.

But, He wasn’t. Not that I could see.

And then I read Ephesians chapter 3, and He opened my eyes to the message that was there for me.

“3:14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” (KJV)
LESSON LEARNED

Sitting on this side of that awful winter, I can look at myself and recognize that I want my life to be easy. I do not want the constant struggles, the pain and inability to accomplish mundane tasks on my own.

I want to be able to breeze through my tasks with no stumbling blocks thrown in my way. I want to set out to lose weight and be able to get it done yesterday with no impediments.

But I also acknowledge the fact that if it was that easy, it would be taken for granted and the accomplishment would not be fully appreciated. I need the struggles to keep me humble and to make me appreciate the good times more.

If everything was as easy as I would like it to be, I would not feel the need to draw on the Lord’s strength.  I would not feel the need to pull closer to Him and turn to Him for help.  I would go through my days focusing on the task at hand and rely on myself for the abilities and power to accomplish it all.

I need to be able to see that in my weakness, God is the One that makes me strong; and know that it is not through my own power that I have accomplished what He asked me to do.

I know this in my heart, but am honest enough to admit that I can be rather stiff-necked and unyielding when it comes to wanting things my way, and I need a reminder every now and then that I have to humble myself and yield to God’s direction and will.

God does not promise us that doing what He wants us to do will be easy. This life is difficult. What He does promise is that He will be with us through it all and will give us the strength to overcome the hurdles and accomplish what is His will.

Because He loves us with a love that is unfathomable.

No. It may not be easy. But it will be worth it in the end.

© Drusilla Mott and http://drusillamott.wordpress.com, 2014

 

I will be posting the final lesson next week.  If you have missed any of this series and want to read those articles, you can click on the LESSONS LEARNED menu in the header above.

Posted in ENCOURAGEMENT, FAITH, GOD'S GUIDANCE, GOD'S LOVE, GOD'S PEACE, GOD'S STRENGTH, GOD'S WILL, LESSONS LEARNED | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Lessons Learned 5 – Spiritual Warfare

The lessons I learned through my winter of struggles have been invaluable to me, but there have lingered some questions that were still left unanswered.

Why did everything seem to fall apart all at once?

Where was my ability to deal with it all?

Things always seemed to pile up together, smothering me in anger, irritation and turmoil.

When I had three or four things go wrong in the space of five minutes, my anger and irritation leapt out in a yell of frustration that could be heard through the whole house, and possibly the neighborhood.

Now, don’t get me wrong, it was never a swear word or curse, just a loud yell that released the bottled up emotions that I was trying to hang onto.

And immediately, everything smoothed out and things began going correctly.

I found myself asking why that should be?

Why would there be so many things wrong all at once, only to have everything go right immediately upon my shout of irritation?

I began to wonder if Satan had not been sitting at my shoulder, pushing me to see how long I could hold on until I let my temper get the better of me.

Was it possible that I was giving him the battles each and every time because I could not hold onto the peace that I should have had through God’s Holy Spirit?

I began to believe it.

I was working on this article during the weeks that my Pastor was preaching on Ephesians. As he talked about our relationships with each other and with God, he pointed out that when we are indwelt with the Holy Spirit, we should have the Spirits of Joy and Thanksgiving within us at all times.

He made the comparison that our moods should not be like a thermometer that goes up and down depending on the circumstances around us; but that we should be more like a thermostat that controls our reactions to the circumstances.

As he pointed out in that sermon – The devil will move in as soon as the complaining starts.

I understood that point. I had been living it for an entire winter.

Satan will steal your joy if you let him, and all you have to do is open the door by whining and complaining about your circumstance.

When you have not given your all to the Holy Spirit, when you are not content in your life, when you start to find fault, as I was doing, Satan will rush through that door of ingratitude and pull your life apart.

LESSON LEARNED –

I was defeating myself with my temper and agitation, allowing Satan to steal the peace and joy that should have been a constant in my life because of my relationship with the Lord.

Since my Salvation as a child, I have had the Holy Spirit indwelling me. By His strength I should have been able to overcome the irritation, anger and fits of temper that marred my days and stole my joy.

I was focusing too much on my circumstances and not enough on Him, something that is a major problem for me, and always has been.

I had all of Him, but I wasn’t giving my all to Him; and so my joy was incomplete.

With God’s strength and guidance, I pray I will get better at this and conquer my misdirected focus.

© Drusilla Mott and http://drusillamott.wordpress.com, 2014

Posted in ENCOURAGEMENT, FAITH, GOD'S GUIDANCE, GOD'S LOVE, GOD'S PEACE, GOD'S WILL, LESSONS LEARNED, SUFFERING, THANKFULNESS | Tagged , , , , , , , | 8 Comments