Sometimes God pursues me and it’s like a perfect storm. Conviction and grace and truth wash over me, overwhelming me without pulling me under or crushing me.
I woke up this morning disappointed to be waking up in our home. Frustrated that yesterday’s showing didn’t result in an offer. Angry that things aren’t going according to my plan and God’s timing doesn’t seem to be the same as mine.
I was reminded of a Derek Webb song that says, “I repent, I repent of living like I deserve anything.” I thought about my frustration with my children when they act like they are entitled to things. They don’t seem to understand the concept of grace or gifts or service. They act as though their needs should be my top or only priority. They act as though they know better than me. (There’s so much here about planks in eyes vs. specks, but that’s a post for another day.)
My prayer this morning from Valley of Vision was “The All-Good.”
“Help me to see how good thy will is in all,
and even when it crosses mine
teach me to be pleased with it.
Grant me to feel thee in fire, and food and every providence,
and to see that thy many gifts and creatures
are but thy hands and fingers taking hold of me…
I give myself to thee out of love,
for all I have or own is thine,
my goods, family, church, self,
to do with as thou wilt…”
Those last couple of lines are not the cry of my heart. Those are the kinds of words that scare me. I don’t say things that might give God any ideas, remember? I don’t live as though all I have is His. I clench my fingers tightly around those I love the most and feel entitled to their health and well-being and existence. I don’t count blessings as blessings. Far too often I see them as deserved.
In this season of Thanksgiving, my pastor is encouraging our church to share publicly what we are grateful for and to contemplate privately what we are UNgrateful for. He asked us to keep a record of these things and to look for patterns. Where am I grumbling and complaining? How is my heart disordered? This private focus has been a helpful exercise for me and has led to a lot of conviction and today’s change in perspective.
The truth is the truth whether I acknowledge it or not.
“My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.”
“Oh, what wondrous love is this
though I raise my clenched fists
He opens up my hands
to receive His gifts.”
–What Wondrous Love is This?