The last two to three weeks at our house have been a constant roller coaster of trials, both big and small. It has run the gamut from the my iron quitting to a financial hit to emotional and even legal issues. My husband and I just look at each other each day as something new arises and say, "So this is what today's problem is, huh?"
I have been through many situations in my life that have tried my faith and strengthened it in the process.
But the past couple of weeks have taught me even more about faith. It's one thing to say you have faith. It's easy to say "I trust God to help us through this."
It's quite another to say "I trust God to do whatever He wants in my life."
It's even more stretching to trust God no matter what.
I had to come to the realization that my faith is not real until I am willing to trust God with whatever happens. I had to realize that God could very well have a totally different outcome in mind for me than I envisioned, and real faith would be trusting Him even if what I think should happen never came to pass.
It is very risky in human terms to trust God completely. It can be uncomfortable and inconvenient. But God is sovereign. He is GOD. Shouldn't He know better than I what is best for me?
This line of thinking does not come naturally to me. I attribute a large part of this to the influence of Elisabeth Elliot. She has such a peaceful, calm voice that reminds me that the God who created the universe, aligned the planets, tamed the seas, and fashioned the human body is the same God who knows all about my little world with its trivial circumstances.
She quotes Romans 8:28 like this:
It would seem like such an easy lesson to learn; that is, until you are ushered into the schoolroom and seated at a desk on the front row. Then the exam is tough, and the study time was not nearly long enough.
Through this time (that isn't over yet) I was reminded of an old song by Twila Paris that I listened to growing up, called "Do I Trust You?"
Sometimes my little heart can't understand what's in your will; what's in your plan; so many times I'm tempted to ask you why?
But I can never forget it for long, Lord what you do could not be wrong. So I believe you even when I must cry.
I can think of a hundred examples of stories, real and make-believe, where struggle gave a person two choices: to be defeated or to grow stronger. I have chosen, again, to grow stronger.
My dear pastor's wife, recently departed to heaven, used to tell me something that still speaks to me today: "Don't waste pain." She said that there is a reason for suffering and difficulty, and that I can learn the lesson being taught to me, or I can prolong the suffering by wallowing in it.
Guess which one I am choosing?
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