I just have a quick post of encouragement today. I've blogged about my lack of ability to gather all my thoughts into one coherent post but I'll try to share something that encouraged me recently.
There's a song by Greg Long that's called "In The Waiting". One part of the verse says this:
Pain, the gift nobody longs for
Still it comes
And somehow leaves us stronger
When it's gone away.
That's sooo hard to swallow for me. Why do we have to go through that pain? Why do we have that gut-wrenching feeling in the pit of our stomach when we think about what we've lost, what we've been through, who we've watched walk away?
There are times when God puts us to the test to see if we're willing to fight our way through and hold on to Him. Sometimes in the midst of those tests, we fail, we grumble, we complain, we slack, we even look to God and say "WHERE ARE YOU?"
For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as sons;
In previous posts, I've admitted the fact that I have trouble understanding God's love for me. He loves us as His children. If you've not had a good example of a father to grow up with it tends to taint your image of fathers altogether. God has been trying to show me lately just how much He loves me and when I read that verse about chastening, it made me understand a little more about the relationship we should have with God.
As parents, we teach and discipline our children in order for them to grow up and be responsible christian adults with good morals and standards and a love for the Lord. It's the same with us and God. He has to teach us how to withstand the tests and trials of life, how to hang on when we feel we've only got one thread left to hold on to, to trust in Him above ANYTHING else....how else does He do it but through chastening?
We can respond to chastening by despising it or even resenting it or we can choose to take heed to the Lord's discipline and recognize it as His love, grace and commitment to us as our Father. You've heard the phrase "this will hurt me more than it hurts you" coming from a parent who is about to spank their child. Don't you think that's true of our heavenly Father as well? Don't you feel that God must look down on us when we're in the midst of trouble and when He sees our tears, our frustration, our cries for help that He hurts with us? As parents, don't we cry and hurt with our children at times? Our heavenly Father loves us MORE than we love our own children so I know that He hurts and cries with us during those tough, trying times.
With all that being said, in the other verse to that song there's a portion of it that just gets me:
Your silence doesn't mean that I'm alone
As long as I can hear that I am still your own.
Wow. Let that really sink in for a few seconds. Does God cast us away when we fail? When we have sooo far to go (won't we always have so far to go)? When there are areas in our life that need worked on?
Not even close!!! He gathers us in His arms and begins to teach us in love and grace in a way that only our heavenly Father can!
As long as I am HIS child and He is my heavenly Father, I know I'll be okay.
I hope you all have endured my ramblings. Seriously, it could get a lot worse. :)
Please remember to pray for Aunt Ellie! She goes today to the Mayo Clinic and will have a pretty rough procedure on Friday. We're asking God to move powerfully.