As I lay awake in bed this morning, desiring to start my day with the Lord as my focus, this is the verse that came to my mind. It’s been a rough few weeks. Honestly, when I got to the word “rejoice,” I knew I had a problem. I am really struggling to find joy these days. I’m not going to go into all the details of what is going on with my Celiac Disease or my ongoing problems with my pesky lumbar discs because I don’t want this to become a medical journal. Let’s just sum it up with the fact that I am in pain a great portion of my day, unless I am laying down, in addition to the stress of discovering my new normal with Celiac disease. I haven’t posted much here, largely because I don’t want to disappoint everybody and I don’t want to dishonor the Lord.
Surrendering is really hard right now. I was reading a book last night and the author summed it up well. “I want my life back!” Do I? Do I REALLY? Yeah, I kinda do. Part of me, at least, wants to be normal again. I don’t want to deal with a new lifestyle and I surely don’t want to be so limited in my ability to do normal things like walking and sitting because of the pain it causes me. I’d love to be able to sit on the couch for 30 minutes and read a book, knit, type, whatever, without having to lay down to take the pressure off the nerves. I’d love a doughnut! A biscuit! I’d love to make a batch of whole wheat bread!
I have noticed recently that I have been pulling back from the Lord. I’m not angry at Him for allowing these things. I know that He knows what is best for me, to make me more like Himself. And there is that part of me that says, “OK, God…do whatever it takes to mold me and make me the person you want me to be…a person that glorifies You.” But the other part of me is trying to deal with all this in my own strength. Did I think that if I ignored Him that He would walk away and go work on someone else? Did I think that if I avoided Him that it would be easier to handle on my own? Did I think He wouldn’t notice? My, how stupid we can be!
I guess I’m not sure what He really wants from me right now. I know I am to glorify Him in all that I do. I get that. I WANT to do that! But I honestly haven’t figured out how to balance suffering and joy. In one way they seem opposites of each other. Don’t I need joy to glorify Him? How do I rejoice…something that should come from my heart, when my body is in pain and I just want to cry?
A friend challenged me this morning. She asked me if I was spending time in His Word every day. I was honest and told her that I was not…it’s been part of my avoiding Him, I guess. I promised her that I would indeed spend time with Him today and that I would blog about it later. He spoke to me very clearly though His Word this morning…the very first verse I was to read in the study I was doing was Jeremiah 15:16.
Thy words were found and I ate them,
and Thy words became for me a joy
and the delight of my heart;
for I have been called by Thy name,
O Lord God of hosts.
I guess that’s pretty plain, huh? Jeremiah found nourishment in God’s Word and as a result it brought JOY and DELIGHT to his heart! If daily nourishment brings joy and delight, imagine what FEASTING on His Word would bring!
I would appreciate your prayers. Pray that I would be diligent in feeding on His Word daily. My tendency is to withdraw and I don’t want to do that any longer with Him. But again, there’s the physical struggle that battles for the top spot. Any one of you can hold me accountable about my time with Him. I humbly give you permission to question me and rebuke me if you feel necessary. I’m thinking I need you all to hold my arms up on this one, like Aaron and Hur held up the arms of Moses during Israel’s battle with the Amalekites. I know I can count on you. But most of all I know that the Lord is going to get me to a place where I can help others as they go through similar struggles.
Thanks, Christina, for giving me the nudge I needed today. You are a blessing to me!