Well… this is a picture of what my life has been like for a little over two years. In the previous blog, I shared a little bit about why. All I know to do is steal away to myself and just take things to the Lord in prayer… constantly! Today has been an especially difficult one. I get so impatient with my circumstances. There are a couple areas of my life I would love to just close the door on. I haven’t got clarification from God that it’s what I’m supposed to do, though. So, I’m sitting still and listening. Because life will swallow us up with distractions, it is requiring a lot of self-discipline to keep things ‘calm and quiet’ – as much is realistically possible. I have a lot of anger that I am constantly having to take to the Lord because it’s so much bigger than I can restrain alone. Actually, I often don’t restrain. It comes out in some little sarcastic statement or mild verbal attack I make. I keep reminding myself of how the Lord is merciful to us DAILY. If I am to strive to follow Christ’s ways, then I must earnestly work to forgive over and over. The part I struggle with the most is that there is very little genuine repentance seen and absolutely no proof of trustworthiness. But if I don’t want to be eaten alive by this poison within me (anger, resentment, hardness of heart), I must FORGIVE – whether it’s deserved or not.
Matthew 18: 15-18, 21-22, 35
15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
21 Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
22 Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.
35 So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.
26 Be ye angry , and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil.
So, what does the above look like lived out in relationships with others – family, friends, co-workers, church members, etc.? I try to remind myself of all of my shortcomings in an attempt to dig deep inside myself so that I might find ways to extend grace to my husband who has hurt me in so many ways over and over and over. Sometimes I am able to do it. Other times I’m not. I’m angry that I’m not being loved well by him. What does righteous anger look like lived out toward a very, very difficult person? I’m not advocating passive ‘Christianity’. There are certainly times to take a firm stand on an injustice and turn the anger into something pro-active. Pro-activity has been exercised in this situation and a little bit of progress has been made, but it is extremely challenging to give things time and hope/pray for further change to occur over time – all while simultaneously having to interact with him regularly.
I DO have praises to the Lord to offer, though. I have a temp job lined up for the next two weeks. I have also been invited to stay longer with my friend than was originally agreed upon. Words cannot express how thankful I am for these things. I have also been working very hard at staying committed to my disciplines. I have been able to follow through on all of the daily ones except my bible study. However, I plan to get caught up on this tomorrow! I’m also hosting a Mary Kay party tomorrow and hope to make a few bucks. I am soooo not a Mary Kay kind of person, but a girl does what a girl’s gotta do to pay the bills! (within reason – ha ha) I wanted to end this post with some good news. So, there ya have it!
‘Till next time!