Monday, February 3, 2014

Running Away: It's Time to Come Home

"Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay" Hab. 2:3

Was there ever a time in your childhood when you felt like running away?  Perhaps you almost did; you got the letter ready, packed a PB n J, and your favorite toy to discover you were too afraid to do it?  You knew it wasn’t a good idea, you’d be leaving a place of shelter, a family who loved you, and what would you eat tomorrow? 

As I reflect upon my life and the most difficult season of life to date which began towards the end of 2010, there have been many times where I felt like running away.  Why?  Because life didn’t go like I wanted it to nor expected it to go.  It was so much harder than I expected.  It seemed like every time I’d get somewhere or do something I’d have a setback or two follow me.  I was physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted.  It’s like God was taking me on a journey where I’d long to do things but for the life of me, I could not make them happen.  Have you ever been there?  In a place where it feels like things just are not going right?  As I reflect on this season of my life, I know all along God was trying to get my attention and bring me to a place of deeper trust and rest, to empty me of my own self-sufficiency, plans, and independence.  I was learning what it means to really praise God for His love, and not how He lives up to my expectations.  Wow, that sounds selfish, doesn’t it?

On this journey I have felt useless, embarrassed, defeated, out of control, weak, frustrated, fed-up, tired, and just plain done.  I wonder if anyone else ever has?  Yep, that’s called the stripping process.  It’s not easy, in fact, it’s very painful, but it is the redemption my sinful heart needs.  I’m so glad that the Lord disciplines those He loves, that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us, that God always leads us in triumphal processions in Christ, that it is God who works in me to will and act according to His good purpose, and that the God of all grace, after you have suffered a little while will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast (Heb. 12:6, Rom. 8:18, 2 Cor. 2:14, Phil. 2:13, 1 Peter 5:10). 

Sometimes God gives us more than we can handle.  He does.  Whoever told you He doesn’t, lied.  Trust me, there have been days where it has been too much for me.  You see, it’s about God bringing us to a place where we say, I get it, I can’t do it on my own, and I need You.  I just need You.  What is it about the Lord my friends, He really is that Rock that will never fail us, a constant help in times of trouble.  He stands up to His Word Beloved!  He is more than enough for us.  I never realized how sinful, so full of pride and selfishness I was before God took me on my journey to brokenness.  I’m so glad He did, because now we can get rid of that and get more of Jesus.  Hallelujah! 

I love Jesus and I CANNOT live without Him.  I’ll fall to pieces.  I can live without my sin--my pleasures, my comforts; my plans BUT I CANNOT live without Jesus.  What about you?  Are you falling to pieces?  Let God put you back together.  Have you run away from God or your responsibilities?  It could be an emotional abandonment.  We don’t physically have to leave something to have actually left it.  Come back to the Father like the prodigal son to find grace, healing, and forgiveness.  God may ask you or He may just take your comforts from you.  Give it to Him, I have a feeling it’s much easier than it being stripped from you.  It’s not worth holding on to.  It won’t bring your heart freedom, but the Lord Jesus can and does.  So why not come home to the Father?   

We serve a God of redemptive grace my friends, even in the midst of life’s most terrible, frustrating storms He gives us glimpses of His grace.  As I reflect further on this season I have also seen the hand of God move to protect me, sustain me, and grant me grace after grace.  Even more recently, I have seen the hand of God move graciously on my behalf to bring restoration to my body with my recent pregnancy and blood pressure that is finally back to normal.  I’m still praying for more restoration, but in the meantime, I’m learning to rest in my Father who sees and is more than enough for me!    

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