Saturday, February 20, 2016

A Struggle or a Seminar?

Year 4-Day 51: Today- I am grateful we can re-forge a struggle into "a seminar". 

Struggles come and they go.  How we view them changes everything.  Do we see them as "undeserved" and "unfair" or do we take a deep breath and look for the teachable moments in the tetris-like dance through difficulties?  

Our God never leaves us or forsakes us. He is present in our storms. Sometimes, he is silent... but he is never more than a prayer away.  Surrendering our limited VISION (yes, that word "vision" appears again) and embracing the "God Goggles" keeps us sane... and changes everything. 

People pay a great deal for seminars. Do we sometime cheat God out of the opportunity to teach us through a struggle? I am sure I do.  

I like to think things through, plan and see a plan in place.  I plan for the "just in case". It is my way.  But, in making my plans the priority, I can fail to see His face in this place and forget about His grace in the race...the one that leads straight to His open arms.  

I read the imagery in  2 Timothy 4:7:"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith."

Is that what I imagine when I am tired, hurt and don't feel like pressing on? When I am weary, tired, sick or hurt?  In those moments I must remember, I am never on my own. Consider this scripture Phillipians 3:13-15 ::

"Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you.

Yes, sometimes, He allows the struggle. "Press on" is such a great catch phrase.  In those times, we have to trust his character and his heart. We must press on. 

To know his heart...we must read His Word. It is not a difficult formula, but as humans...we often fight him, negotiate and simply neglect to read His word. 

Inside my teen Bible I wrote this quote I heard along the way: "This book and keep me from sin and sin can keep me from this book.". How true those words ring. I'm either seeking his face in light of His grace...or I am attempting it on my own.  On my own never works out that well...specifically when trials come. 

Hosea 6:3 holds this beautiful promise; "
Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.”

Press on to know Him. His ways are as sure as the dawn and he will come as refreshing spring rains to a thirsty earth. Our struggles are not too big for Him. He wants to take us by the hand. 

He will walk us through it. He wants us to listen for his voice when the path is too dark to navigate with our eyes. He wants to celebrate with us when the trial is over. He wants us to breathe. Our soul breath is a precious gift. 

Today- I am grateful we can re-forge a struggle into "a seminar"...and the teacher's notes are bound in a book that is likely sitting on a shelf or bedside table. 

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