Wednesday, February 19, 2020

God In the Inconvenience

He will give you hardships that feel like they'll crush the bones in your hands. He'll make sure you are exhausted to the point of tears. He'll allow the wind to push you so far backward that you feel as though you've never taken a step forward in the first place. He will give you more than you asked for, the good and the unimaginable. But He will walk with you every step of the way.

Recently saw a post by an old mentor from my Leadership Training days that said, "Your destiny is coming forth and it looks like inconvenience."

When running in some Christian circles, you often hear really positive words and proclamations about your life in Christ: declarations of blessings, income, possessions, and salvation for unsaved family members are made on the daily (or at least they were at my school). This one is unusual in that it cuts to the point, a point I feel cannot be made enough if you're going to follow Jesus into the next life. 

Our destinies on this earthly outpost are greatly inconvenient and fraught with some of the most difficult situations and heartaches imaginable. If things are going well for you, you've visited what I call "the surface" more than I have. 

It gets lonely down here, but one of the comforts we have is each other. When you walk alone, the burdens get so heavy you feel like they'll crush your bones as you cry yourself to sleep. When you walk with a brother or sister in the faith, everything is still heavy, but the load gets distributed more evenly, across more shoulders, just as God intended.

The opening image got me thinking today; it says, "God is going to give you more than you asked for." The person that saved this on social media said, "God is going to bless you!" And they're right.

God is going to give you so many challenges, obstacles, heartaches, and difficulties that you'll spend many prayer times on your knees asking why He'd allow so much drama and chaos to come into your life. Sometimes He'll quietly explain; other times (personally), it feels like He leans back on His throne and just... watches you beg. Somehow, we're supposed to count this as "all joy."

But the outcome of these trials and testings is the blessing of greater faith: faith in His Word, His promises, and even, yes, His silences. 

When we learn to swim, our parents cheer us on at first, just for getting in the water. But as we grow, in order to stay afloat in the pool (and just maybe, out at sea), they step away from us, little by little, prompting us to swim forward and trust that if the treading gets too hard for us, that they'll mercifully step in and help us or lift us out.

God is the same way. Out here in these treacherous open waters, through forests dark and deep, or wild stretches of sand, He calls us ever forward, teaching us to trust that He is never out of control, especially when we are.

This year started very slow but quickly revealed so many weaknesses, ones that I'm both ashamed of and angry over, seeing as they stem from old wounds that I am left to patch up on my own. 

But He is so gracious. Where last year, I was touch-starved and voiceless and insecure, I'm now confident and loved and supported! I have a wonderful therapist who is teaching me how to process and let go of the hand I was dealt, and my family and friends continue to root for my success. 

That's not to say I always remember that, and people losing their temper at me and yelling and accusing still sets me on edge and affects me. But little by little, I'm stepping out of the darkness of my past and into the daylight (even potential rain showers) of my future. 

He will bless me, in wonderful, unimaginable, painful, beautiful ways. And it's all for my good in the end. Romans 8:28

Image result for river in the desert

"Find me in the River
Find me on my knees
I've walked against the water
Now I'm waiting if you please
We didn't count on suffering
We didn't count on pain
But if there are blessings in the valley
Then in the River I will wait
"Find me in the River
Find me there
Find me on my knees with my soul laid bare
Even though you're gone
And I'm cracked and dry
Find me in the River
I'm waiting here for You."

- Find Me in the River; 
Amy Grant & Delirious 

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