Monday, May 31, 2010

Lord, How I Trust Thee

My God has called me to walk in relationship with Him through this time of great change.
I am tired of it already and it has not even been that long of a journey, but He is calling me to walk in obedience to His voice. I keep asking Him, "Lord, what do you want me to learn through this?" and "Why is it necessary for me to walk THIS road?". I want to ask "Lord, why not another road" but know that it would be a sure sign of the lack of trust in my Lord that I struggle with. I guess I could ask Him because He is my Father and His desire is that, as His child, I would come to Him with an open and vulnerable heart.
So, for today, I choose to follow after Him. To chase after Him. Not that He is leaving me but that I don't want to get too far behind. I want to be walking hand in hand with Him but I am realizing that this is not a stroll that we are on. It is more of a hike and you don't hold hands during a hike. The trail is narrow and you follow the guide ahead of you. And it is hard work. It gets your blood pumping and your heart working harder. And it can feel uncomfortable.
That is me and God right now. He is the guide and I am the one following after Him. We are on a hike toward greater maturity and trust in Him. I don't really want to be on this hike. It is hard and uncomfortable. I'd like to go back to the meadow of comfort but then I would surely miss out on God and that is not something that I am willing to do. I will go this path because the alternative of missing God is much more scary.
Everyone tells me that I can trust Him to lead me. And I do....most of the time.
But every now and then I forget and I cave to my fears.
Fears that really are silly. But in the moment, they feel very real and very big and very life consuming. And my God knows that I struggle with this fear. And He is patient with me.
So for today, I chose to follow my Jesus as He leads me through this dense forest and rough terrain. He is taking me up a high mountain and I must trust that He is going to protect me. He will not be unconcerned for my safety, He will not chide me and taunt me with all the things that I've done wrong and the ways that I've messed up. Or criticize me for lacking courage. He will be patient with me and wait for me when I am afraid. He will encourage me to take each step. And when I grow weary, He will encourage me to keep going. He will grab my hand and help me when I am afraid to step from one level to the next. He will not let me go.

He is faithful and I am going to trust Him.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Unchanging and Faithful

Life has changed in every way possible. Over the last month, I've had to work my way through believing that God is who He says He is and that He can do what He says He can do.

Last month, on April 21st to be exact, I found out that I was not to be reconsidered for re-election at my job. This basically means that I won't be offered a contract to teach again next year.

I was flabbergasted and at once, my heart shattered into many, many tiny fragmented pieces. I suddenly was overcome with feelings of shame, guilt, failure, and remorse. I now realize that satan was working on overdrive in order to get me to believe his filthy lies. That I was a total and complete failure. That I had no future. That my world as I knew it was over. That my God was not who He said He was. That I would fall apart.

But he did not succeed..

I was told and reminded that no matter what, my God is who He says He is.

That is, unchanging....

Malachi 3:6 "I the LORD do not change."

1 Samuel 15:29 "He who is the Glory of Israel does not lie or change his mind; for he is not a man, that he should change his mind."

Numbers 23:19 "God is not a man, that he should lie,nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?"

James 1:17 "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."

and faithful......

Exodus 34:6 "And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness"

Deuteronomy 7:9 "Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands."

Psalm 18:25 "To the faithful you show yourself faithful,to the blameless you show yourself blameless"

Psalm 33:4 "For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does."

Psalm 36:5 "Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies."

Psalm 86:15 "But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness"

Psalm 91:4 "He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart."

Lamentations 3:22-23 "Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning;great is your faithfulness."

1 Corinthians 1:9 "God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful."

2 Thessalonians 3:3 "But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one."

Hebrews 10:23 "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful."

Revelation 19:11 "I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war."

He will hold me and lead me into a new path toward greater holiness.
I am struggling with natural human emotions and grief. I've learned that this is a very natural process and that I have to walk through it. But, the sweetest thing of all is that I don't have to walk through it alone. I have the Creator of the earth to walk me, holding my hand and leading me into a new experience.

He is the reason that I get up in the morning and get dressed. He is the reason that I go to work and try to love on the little ones that I have for such a short period of time left. He is the reason that I am still able to sing His praises. He is the reason that I continue on.

If it were not for Him, I honestly don't know how I would be handling this.

I don't know how people who do not have a relationship with the Lord, respond to trials, tribulations, and tests in their lives.

I just know that without my Jesus, I would be completely lost.

Through this trial, I have discovered a beauty in the body of Christ that I've not experienced before. My sisters in Christ have stepped up and entered into my crisis and have shouldered the burden and pain of my trial. They have helped me lift my head when all I can do is hang it in shame. They are a source of support that I desperetly need and I am eternally grateful for their devotion.

My God is with me in this...even in this.

The phrase that I was told by my sweet friend Tricia is from a Beth Moore study and it says

"If this, then God."

That is crucial to me.....

If I lose my job, then God.

If I lose my house, then God.

If I lose my security, then God.

Because it does not matter what life throws at me....with God I can do all things and He is faithful and unchanging.

I can trust Him in the midst of uncertainty and everpresent change, because He does not change.