Fearing the Lord and Kitchen Knives

I cried out to God, “Why does this hurt so bad?!?” Gently, He responded, “Because you made pleasing these people your god. Your sacrifices for these people were an act of worship that you were doing to attain their pleasure. And it hurts to be rejected by your god even more than it hurts to be rejected by your friends.”

Climbing the Mountain of Social Distancing

Something has been asked of all of us during this pandemic. We’ve been asked to sacrifice our comfort, our routines, our social contact for the sake of something better. We have been asked to do things that we don’t have the proper support to do well (I’m looking at you, learning from home). And I don’t know about you, but sometimes, it feels like it is killing me.
Which reminds me of what Timothy Keller said in his book Counterfeit Gods: “Sometimes God seems to be killing us when He’s actually saving us.”

Speaking Wholesomely to Myself

This testimony has really made me stop and think. You know, most of the day I am not hearing anyone else talking. And so that leaves a lot of room for the voice in my head to speak to me. And let me tell you, that voice does not often follow the guidelines of Ephesians! While words like “You can’t do this”, “Out of control”, or “Failed again” might not be fully formed into sentences, often that is my self-talk it. And that’s not very wholesome talk!

The Secret Holder

Since my kids have me as a secret-holder, they are able to be more trustworthy friends, the type that can be helpful and loving to those around them. They can build their strengths of standing up for those who are hurting since they aren’t weighed down with heavy secrets. Because I’m holding them.

As I was thinking about this, God reminded me that He is my release valve. The weight of life is too heavy for me to hold. When 1 Peter 5:7 instructs us to cast all our cares upon the Lord, it isn’t because He’ll fix it, but because He cares for us. He will hold the weight of it so we can build our strength to be able to do the things He’s asked us to do. He releases that pressure.

Running the Hard Race

That’s not the model that Hebrews 12 gives, however. It does not instruct me to run with perseverance the race marked out for me fixing my eyes on how much better I’ll be when this discipline is through. It doesn’t remind me that there is so much personal glory in enduring hardship as discipline. On the contrary, I’m instructed to fix my eyes on Jesus, the One Who initiated faith in me and is making it perfect.