This post (and maybe more) are my attempt to process some things that I’ve been learning lately. Feel free to read on or ignore!
“We have the idea that God is going to do some exceptional thing, that He’s preparing and fitting us for some extraordinary thing by and bye, but as we go on in grace, we find that God is glorifying Himself here and now, in the present minute. If we have God’s say-so behind us, the most amazing strength comes and we learn to sing in the ordinary days and ways.” (Oswald Chambers)
Thinking back over the last year and posts that I was writing this time last year, I’ve begun to realize the amazing journey that the Lord has taken me on. I wrote multiple posts about how I felt that God was leading me to a crossroads, that I felt this great thing was coming, that He was preparing me for the amazing ride. Wow, did He ever. But it surely wasn’t the ride I was thinking.
I’m in the process of setting up boundaries and journeying onto a new path; but with such a different perspective. I’ve struggled for years to come to terms with what my identity is (who doesn’t?), about how to let go and be free, about how to just relax in my space. I’ve longed to be anonymous and learned how crappy that is and I’ve found a new respect for close friends and their accountability, honesty, wisdom and love.
What I’m realizing is that I’m such a pleaser. I have no fear of God, but an amazing fear of people and especially myself. But in that, I find that I can’t please anyone…not even Jesus. It is only through His grace and mercy that I can find myself uplifted and protected and loved by Him and not feeling his wrath. I fear so much letting myself down, letting others down and just letting go. But in the midst of the last few weeks, I’m learning what freedom there is (even in the midst of fear) of finding my identity in Christ, clinging to Him and finding boldness in His word.
I long for boldness like I never have before. I long to be filled with grace and gentleness and peace like I never have before and the sweet Lord is delivering. Does that mean I don’t scream at my children or throw my shoes at the wall or that things are always ‘easy peasey lemon squeezy’? NO! But in the midst of my failure and sin, I can shrug it all off so much easier in the grace of Christ.
I am also learning where I am so vulnerable to attack. I make plans, I make decisions and I do things that I feel confident are the Lord’s will. Then something comes along and I question my decision. That fear creeps in. What a freeing thing to know where the attack may come and how to pray for that hedge of protection!
And here is what I’m reading, daily as I seek to walk this new path of freedom, boldness and grace:
Lord Jesus, Great High Priest, Thou hast opened up a new and living way by which a fallen creature can approach thee with acceptance.
Help me to contemplate the dignity of thy Person, the perfectness of thy sacrifice, the effectiveness of thy intercession.
O what blessedness accompanies devotion, when under all the trials that weary me, the cares that corrode me, the fears that disturb me, the infirmities that oppress me, I can come to thee in my need and feel peace beyond understanding!
The grace that restores is necessary to preserve, lead, guard, supply, help me.
And here thy saints encourage my hope; they were once pooor and are now rich, bound and are now free, tried and now are victorious.
Every new duty calls for more grace than I now posess, but not more than is found in thee, the divine treasury in whom all fullness dwells.
To thee I repair for grace upon grace, until every void made by sin be replenished and I am filled with all thy fullness.
May my desires be enlarged and my hopes emboldened, that I my honour thee by my entire dependency and the greatness of my expectation.
Do thou be with me, and prepare me for all the smiles of prosperity, the frowns of adversity, the losses of substance, the death of friends, the days of darkness, the changes of life, and the last great change of all.
May I find thy grace sufficient for all my needs.
From Valley of Vision
Thank you sweet Jesus for the ordinary. May I stop constantly and give you praise for it.