I was reading my Carol Kent book this morning as I was waiting for the kids to wake up. These three paragraphs just hit me.
When our actions reflect ruling passions that are based on biblical convictions rather than on distortions of the truth, our change points become opportunities for showcasing the power of God.
Is it possible to adapt to change joyfully? Tim Hansel thanks so. He says,
"Joy is a process, a journey-often muffled, sometimes detoured; a mystery in which we participate, not a product we can grasp. It grows and regenerates as we have the courage to let go and trust the process. Growth and joy are inhibited when we say "if only," enhanced when we realize that failures and difficulties are not only a critical part of the process, but are our very opportunities to grow."
Carol says, she needs to remember that! Our lives are constantly changing, and with those changes many new opportunities and problems are emerging. Whether the change is one we have chose or is one that we have no control over, it can be the door to an exciting adventure through which God can reshape the course of our lives!
Wow, this spoke to me on several different levels. The first being, yes, I chose to get pregnant, but it will still create problems. I WILL be uncomfortable the last three months of my pregnancy, I will be tired when the newborn comes. I will have difficulties trying to "manage" it all. But the reason why we chose to have a large family is because of the exciting adventure that it can bring! We can't wait to see what God is going to do with the lives our children. We are excited that we are raising arrows for God's Kingdom. It's not easy. But when something is worthwhile, is it ever easy?
Take my sister. Her husband is going to school to be in the Forest Service. This is the problem. He could get a job anywhere in June! She has no idea where and when they will be moving. She doesn't even know if it will be in Oregon or not. Just for added fun, her husband is also in the National Guard. There are rumors flying like crazy as to when he will get deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan again. But honestly, they really have no idea, just that it will be in the next few years. Talk about having to be flexible! I would be in despair. This is really teaching my sis that she really has no control over her situation and she just needs to sit back and watch God do the driving. Pretty hard for a former control freak! She is choosing to look at this as an exciting adventure for her family. Honestly, I'm trying to not get worked up at the thought of her moving even farther away. Three hours is agony to me, but it could be so much worse. They also do not know what to do with their house. Should they sell or rent?
I have another dear friend who longed to get married. God answered her prayers. She married a godly man, but one who has ingrained habits from his bacholor years. He can be inconsiderate and insensitive without even knowing it. Some of these habits have driven her crazy! But I have watched God slowly work on her. She has decided to learn contentment and to throw out expectations. She is growing into one of the most godliest people I know. She is so close to the Lord and talks with Him on a constant basis.
Another friend's husband has been diagnosed with an intestinal disease. This disease will not go away. It is chronic and can only be managed with life-style changes in stress reduction and diet. Both of these are huge issues. She has no control over the choices that he makes. She can only watch and pray for her husband to recognize his need for God.
What kind of changes have you been going through? Health? Uncertainty in the stock market? Pregnancy? Problems in your church? A move? A new marriage? The end of a marriage through death or divorce? These things can rock our world and steal the joy that God has given to us through Christ.
It's OK to question God, to be honest with Him and to let Him know exactly how you feel. He wants us to go Him and pound our fists on His chest, sometimes asking "Why me, Lord?". He wants us to go to Him with every little and big thing. That is what a relationship is! The deepest relationship is pure and utter honesty. Can you be honest with God? I'm learning this truth and I am benefiting from it. I pray you might as well. There is no way joy will come in the morning if we don't learn to lay these burdens at the foot of the Cross.