Monday, March 8, 2010

Lessons I'm Learning

There's a childrens song that proclaims "He's still working on me, to make me what I ought to be.."

Oh, my. It did just take him a week to make all of this universe (although, He could have done it quicker if He'd wanted.) However, He is still having to work on me. Kinda' shameful for me - the fact that all that creating He did in a week, and I'm still so difficult that after almost 34 years, I'm far from finished. This week has revealed to me some of the ways God is trying to grow me. Notice I said "God is trying". He gave me free will. Sometimes that stubborn fleshly side of me really gives Him a good fight. I think that if I were sitting in a classroom with God in charge, the daily objectives on the board would read something like this:

1. Understand that God is still God and always has been God.
2. Understand that you are not irreplacable.
3. Understand that you do not make the world go round.
4. Understand that you can learn from others.

I frequently tell my students that if you fully understand something, then your actions will reflect that understanding and knowledge. I need to listen to my own preaching. #1 is a lesson He's teaching me with every breath that I have on this earth. Not sure I'll ever completely understand this one and comprehend all that is with it. The second objective I believe has been the hardest. Mastery of this one requires complete surrender on my part every moment of every day.
Those of you who know me best are familiar with the fact that:
-my way is the best way.
-you may have an opinion, but mine is right.
-I like being in control.
These attitudes contribute to the inflated vision I have of my importance in this world. Don't get me wrong. I know God loves me - Christ on the cross proved that one - and I know He has a plan for me. The problem is sometimes I act as if He can't function without me. I act as if this world, my coworkers, my family, my students, my children can't function without my help and input. The truth is, if I disappeared tonight, all of these things would eventually work out a way to function without me. That is a hard thing for me to admit. I'm not the end all be all in this world. Just a mere speck of dust in the vast expanse of this universe. (Now, I am a speck that Jesus loves and died to pay my enormous sin debt.) So, I'm a loved, saved speck. If I lived every moment of every day with the attitude of I can't live without Him not He can't live without me, what would the impact of my witness be? How would this change my outlook on servanthood? Might be worth a try.
One of the greatest reveals I've been blessed with over the past several years is the presence of spiritually mature women who are able to mentor and guide me in my spiritual walk and every other aspect of my life (wife, mother, teacher, daughter, friend, etc.) Although I believe my generation has much to contribute to the church, I feel as if we close our eyes and ears to the advice and examples offered by those Godly women who've been through all we're going through. After all, they've proven themselves successful. They're still here and thriving in the church, aren't they?? These women provide advice on how to raise my children and how to pray for my husband. Others have modeled patience and the ability to bite your tongue. Mine is becoming scarred from practicing this. Solomon asked God for wisdom. This was not just a verbal request, but a true desire of the heart. I've always SAID that I desired wisdom more than anything else from God. However, looking back, I see that this was not my true heart's desire. So many other distractions clouded my view. I'm hoping that through these lessons, my true heart's desire will continue to become true wisdom from God.

Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. --Alfred Lord Tennyson

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