>> Friday, April 25, 2014
For about the last 6+ months or so, I've been experiencing a renewal with my relationship with God. As I mentioned in a previous post, I've finally found a church that I feel comfortable in.....one that seems to speak to me every Sunday.....one that has a Pastor who is reteaching me about God....and that all the things I thought about Him were so, so wrong.
I came to this church broken and in pieces with a warped sense of who God really was. I believed that because of all the mistakes I've made in my past, I could never do enough to earn God's forgiveness. I believed that I could never do enough to earn God's love. I wasn't a church-goer, I wasn't a prayer warrior, I didn't do Bible study, I ate meat on Fridays, I took the Lord's name in vain.....and on and on and on.....I did all those things, so why would God listen to me. Why would He listen to my prayers? I wasn't perfect enough for Him.
But slowly.....ever so slowly....I've been taking baby steps back. I reached out my hands to Him, and He took them, held them tightly, and is guiding me like I guided my daughters' first steps. He has placed people into my life that are reinforcing a GOOD God.....a God that loves me and forgives me and doesn't expect me to be perfect.
Since Christmas, I've been having some major anxiety in my life. For awhile there, I turned back to God, leaning into Him and His word and I felt better. There were times when I didn't think I'd make it, and God would show His faithfulness to me and I'd make it through that particular struggle. I was learning to trust again.
I recently started reading "The Shack" at the suggestion of a dear friend -- the same one who introduced me to her church. She has such a love and faithfulnes for God, it's more than inspiring. I've heard about the book before, but never really expressed an interest in reading it, until my friend suggested it. I picked it up and I was hooked. But then I became discouraged. While I enjoyed the book....and some parts I totally got and understood....there were other parts where I was like, "HUH?" And then I felt stupid. Stupid for not understanding the message at times.
Last night, my anxiety had me at a breaking point. I couldn't sleep and finally found myself, around midnight, on my knees by my bedside just crying and pouring everything out to God. I had a conversation with Him.....I told him that I feel stupid for not understanding Him. I've been reading the Bible again along with a LOT of Christian books lately....and sometimes felt incredibly frustrated because more times than not, I just didn't understand what He is trying to teach me.
Then it hit me.....
I needed to let go.....I needed to show myself grace & patience....like God shows ME grace & patience. It's like me trying to teach something to the girls....whether it's teaching Nudgie how to read or teaching Nani how to bake cookies.....I show them something over and over until they get it. But eventually, they get it.
Isn't that what God does with me? The difference is that while my patience may run thin with teaching the girls the same thing over and over....God's patience with me NEVER runs out and He will continue to show me over and over and over and over.....as many times as it takes until I get it and accept that God's love & forgiveness is not conditional. It may not be in that one particular book....but there may be a different book, written in a different way, that makes me finally say, I GET IT!
I have a long way to go.....and I will probably NEVER get it. But for the first time in my life, I'm enjoying the journey and I am loving this new relationship that I'm developing with God.
Thank you God for being patient with me!