Thursday, January 1, 2009
I'm back! I'll probably spend the rest of the day catching up on blogs but I had a few thoughts to share.
Some more on the "fearing God" concept....
Psalm 2:11 talks about rejoicing with trembling... I see this as a rush of adrenaline. You know how girls get when they meet a rock star or someone famous that they idolize? I think this is the emotional rush we should get when we consider what God has done/is doing for us.
Most of the comments I received had a perception of fearing God being equal to being in awe of God. Maybe... I'm not trying to preach an angle of hellfire and brimstone... but I do believe that there needs to be more than just appreciation, more than just respect... there does need to be an understanding of consequences. What I believe (since you asked my opinion by reading my blog!) is that Jesus paid the price for our sins and despite how much we mess up, there is always forgiveness... if we ask. If. we. ask. That's where conviction comes in.... where fear comes in... we need to have a clear understanding of what is necessary for us to have access to the throne of God, both on earth and later in Heaven... the price has already been paid.
Look at it this way... say that one of your relatives left you a big chunk of money when they died.... and you knew that money was there but never ever ever tried to cash the check or spend any of the money. You're letting the gift they left you go to waste. If we had plenty of money and never really needed the gift, then we would be less likely to cash in... but if we were broke and homeless and out of work and struggling, we would gladly rush to the bank and claim our inheritance.
It's the same with the gift of forgiveness that we have with God. As long as we feel self-reliant and have everything we need (in this world) and have good health and stable marriages and happy families and successful careers... we don't feel the need for God. Except... even in times of plenty we are still sinners in a fallen world and we still need salvation.... we need that inheritance that was left for us. Fearing God is understanding that spiritual need, even though we may not have any physical needs.
I will tell you quite honestly that as painful as the past year was for me... I treasure the relationship it allowed me to build with God. I had NOTHING! I had placed all my hope and faith in a man who turned his back on me. I had given up my home, my job, my family... everything that mattered... to be with him and so when he transferred his affection to someone else... I felt completely hopeless. In the hospital I was so alone. I just started praying... I prayed constantly... God just started revealing himself to me, giving me hope, showing me the path to my future. It was hard... I've blogged all through the process and you have seen a small sliver of the pain and frustration and fear... there is so much more I haven't been able to share, offenses, hurtful words and deeds, discouragement, disappointment, anger... yet if you asked me today if I would rather have a relationship with my husband or a relationship with God, I would pick God.
I am really convicted that we treat God like we do our favorite Christmas decorations. We have a special place for Him and He is allowed out periodically in the seasons where we need Him... but in times when we feel strong and capable of handling our own lives, we wrap Him respectfully in tissue and pack Him away. Fearing God means understanding that He should never be packed away.
Part of a divorce care daily inspirational message that I received today:
Letting Go of the Pain
"When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, 'Do you want to get well?'" (John 5:6).
Are you purposely hanging on to pain, anger, or blame? Are you living off of those emotions? Perhaps you feel that your negative emotions bring you satisfaction or a feeling of control. Do you sometimes think it feels good to get angry at your ex-spouse or to share stories that highlight your ex-spouse's faults? Let go of the negativity that you are clinging to. You don't want your new identity to be grounded in bitterness and resentment.
"Do you want to get well?" Ouch! Yes. I do. I really want to be able to get through a holiday without fighting back tears. I want to be able to see his name and it not burn like a hot poker to my heart. I want to stop having the same arguments with him in my head that I had with him for the two and a half years we were together. I haven't worked through it all yet. My sister in law has been gently yet firmly reminding me that I truly need to be under the care of a counselor. I am reluctant to do so because of the trauma of being in the psych ward and the fact that I gained NOTHING from being there, except feeling demoralized and dehumanized. The last day there we watched the teenagers playing outside and I wept... how could a child endure what I was unable to bear as an adult? It just broke my heart. The whole experience soured me on mental health - even though my brother is a licensed therapist - I know there are good ones out there. I could not and would not see my brother but because of his connections in the community, I will be able to find someone who will help me navigate these waters. I'm still taking an antidepressant but I hate taking it. I don't want to numb myself. I want to be healed, not cover the pain.
I made collard greens, blackeyed peas and ham for our New Year's Day feast. The ham is a great deal because we'll eat on it for several days and then be able to make soup from it. Austin and I had several errands to run this morning - including feeding Jim and Angie's cat Princess, getting Austin some shoes (more on that in a minute), finding a power cord (which I obviously did! Woohoo!) and so on and so forth. I am now enjoying a venti iced green tea with splenda from Starbucks. If we go to civilization, we have to go to Starbucks!
Taking Austin shoe shopping is a real pain in the tukas. He firmly believes that if you have ONE PAIR of shoes, you're fine. Of course, this is a kid who would live in nothing but boxers if I would let him. He prefers flipflops which was BARELY acceptable in Florida but completely inappropriate for the mountains of North Georgia. Back around the time school started I conned him into a pair of tennis shoes for P.E. and a pair of really cute sketchers loafers for semi-dress up events. More often than not he tries to sneak out the door in his flipflops... he has a pair that are flannel so he thinks those should be warm enough. His feet are permanently stained! Today I convinced him that he REALLY needed another pair of tennis shoes and another pair of loafers. We caught a good sale but it was about as easy as bathing a cat (which, btw, Austin attempted yesterday and was rewarded with a new set of scratches from Stubby's kung fu fighting back leg with claws!). OH MY... that child complained and fussed!
My nieces Sarabeth and Jamie are two little streakers themselves. Those girls would stay nekkid all the time if they could.... and their Barbies... *eyeroll*... not having HAD girls, I don't know what normal is... but I was concerned about getting Jamie a Butterfly Barbie to match her butterfly themed birthday party... and I mentioned to their Aunt Mimi (Angie's sister Mandy) that I wanted to go back to where I had seen butterfly Barbie and buy her... Mandy said, "it doesn't matter, in a week they'll all be Nudist Colony Barbie".... which is so true! They have a toybox full of little naked dolls.
Well... I'm off to read more blogs... have a great day and Happy New Year!
Posted by Heather at 1:17 PM