Thursday, October 25, 2018

Do I know God?

Dear God,

I hear You--really, I do. I'm sorry that I haven't been listening, but thank You for repeating Yourself over and over (and over...) so that it finally got through my thick skull.

Remember, I tend to be a "lesson from a 2x4" girl. The subtle stuff tends to get lost on me, even though it would be a lot easier if I could just learn to hear You when You whisper.

You keep telling me to let go, and I don't know why I find that so incredibly hard to do. Everything and everyone around me lately is reminding me that I need to stop worrying and start trusting.

I know You're greater than anything I can imagine. I know that Your promises are true. I know all the right words and all the Sunday School answers...

...but I've realized that I must not truly know You, because I haven't been truly trusting You.

If I knew You, I would know that my fears are pointless and unfounded. I would know that You have me--You've written me on the palms of Your hands--and there's nothing that can pull me away.

If I knew You, I would know that Your plan will be accomplished in my life (in spite of my efforts, as the case may be). I would know that Your words do what You say they will do--You aren't just speaking to hear Yourself talk.

If I knew You, I would realize that if You know when a sparrow falls, You know all the difficulties in my life. I would know that if You take the time to keep track of how many hairs I have on my head, You will keep track of me.

If I knew You, truly, I would stop wearing myself out with stress over the day-to-day struggles of my life that are so insignificant in the long run. I would stop worrying over all the things that are so far out of my control--but firmly in Your hand.

So God, I'm sorry. I'm sorry for doubting Your power and Your plan. I want to know You. I want to draw close to You. I want to trust You.

*I don't own this song or the pictures...

Friday, October 12, 2018

Let go?

I'm a stubborn and highly independent person. I want to always be able to do everything myself, and I've been that way since I was little. I hate having to rely on anybody else for anything--if I'm not capable of taking care of whatever needs to be done on my own, then I make it my goal to figure out how to do it.

Sometimes that's a good thing. Sometimes, though, it gets me into trouble.

I've talked quite a bit about how I have a hard time trusting. The thing is, lately I've realized that my issue isn't with trust, exactly. Instead, what I have a hard time doing is giving up control. When things start to go wrong, I grab on a little tighter. When life knocks me for a loop and I slide down to the end of my rope, I put all my strength into holding on with everything I've got.

But what if I'm not supposed to hold on?

We drive by Rule Baptist Church on Sunday mornings, and last week this is what their sign says:

At the end of your rope
is the hem of His garment.

If you don't remember the story about the hem of Jesus' garment, here's a quick reminder: Jesus was in the middle of a crowd of people when He stopped and asked who touched Him. I'm sure the disciples thought He was being a little crazy. After all, there were people all around them. So you've got Peter (I brought him up again, I know) who opens his mouth and says, "Okay, Jesus, that's a pretty weird question. You've got this huge crowd around You, and all of them are bumping up against everybody. What do You mean, who touched You?" ...okay, so I paraphrased a bit.
Jesus, though, says, "That's not what I meant. Somebody touched Me, and I felt power flow out." ...again, a bit of a paraphrase.

So this woman speaks up. She knows she's been found out, so she steps forward and falls at Jesus' feet. She tells Him that she had been bleeding for years, and she knew that if she could just touch the hem of His robe, He could heal her.

Down in the dirt, at her lowest, she stopped trying to control everything herself. She stopped searching for the next cure, and she reached out for the hem of His robe.

Maybe, when I'm at the end of my rope, I'm not supposed to be desperately struggling to climb back up. Maybe I'm not supposed to be focusing all my strength on getting back to where I think I'm supposed to be.

Maybe, when I'm hanging by a thread and straining to maintain my grip--maybe that's when I'm supposed to let go.

Maybe I'm supposed to let go of my desperate attempt at holding on to control and reach out for the hem of His garment.

"When struck by fear, I let go,
depending securely upon You alone."
Psalm 56:3

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