I have 2 things to share today:
The first is whether I should be a pessimist who never gets their hopes disappointed or an optimist who always gets their hopes disappointed.
I often play this game with myself where I tell myself it is going to be a hard day and when it is not as hard as I expect I am pleasantly surprised. Lately I have been having faith that God will take care of me no matter what the circumstances of the day are and that it will be a great day for God to do something wonderful.
Let me testify the second is much better. Sure I have disappointments but I also have hope. (a) I’m waiting and looking for God to move. And He does. Its not like being positive all the time. I can’t do that. Some things are genuinely bad or sad. But it is finding God in the good and bad.
The second is I’m not perfect and that’s ok. I have been told all my life that I am not ok because I make mistakes. This is no one’s fault. It is true. If I get the wrong answer it is good to know the right one for next time. I make mistakes and I purposely make bad choices for selfish reasons. (b) I guess this is what I should call feeling sorry for myself. It is definitely self absorbed. The whole syndrome is focusing on how I am bad and have to prove myself. Getting in touch with Jesus’ real love for me helps.
Crying out to Him. (c)
I thought crying out meant yelling out loud. It turns out for me lately crying is letting the tears flow. Opening my heart to the one who created me. When I open my heart to Him and get my eyes on Him I know He loves me even though I don’t deserve it. It is OK to not deserve it. A child never ‘deserves’ its parent’s love. But they love it anyway.
Love is not about deserving. It’s about a savior. It’s about God. (d)
Let me give an example. I did two things right today by listening to God to shovel the driveway and make diner. I was very blessed by both. I probably did 10,000 things wrong. Does that mean I’m a bad person? Kind of yes and I know it but instead of turning away from God and shrinking back in disgust. I want to be brave and ask Him for forgiveness and believe He loves me anyway. I am more thankful for the 2 times I let God work through me than I regret the thousands where I failed.
This doesn’t seem very positive but I think it is truer than thinking I am perfect. Imagine how God usually works. Does He come bigger then life and overwhelmingly destroy all evil with one swipe of His hand? Or does he set the odds against the possibility of goodness coming through. Then gently overcoming all these odds with some lame person who could not do anything on their own just to show how powerfully loving He is.
I don’t understand it but I see how He likes to work.
The christian walk is not easy and it is not for the faint hearted. Just like being willing to get my hopes dashed everyday, He doesn’t return to earth. Can I take it? No. But there is good news. There is a comforter.
The good news is that we already know the ending of the story. He wins. (e)
All learning requires a risk. I must abandon what I know and take a chance on the unfamiliar. Riding a bike and learning how to swim are like this. I want God to take me out into deeper water. I want Him to teach me to ride a bike. If I fall (which I will) I know He will be there to heal me and comfort me through the pain.
The hope is that once I learn to ride my bike many other possibilities open up. I can now visit my friends who live miles away instead of just blocks.
This is the way with God. There are people who already know how to ride God’s bike and are experiencing things too amazing to explain.(f)
a. Rom 5:5 And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
b. 1Tim 1:15 This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” – and I am the worst of them!
c. Ps 27:7 Hear me, O LORD, when I cry out! Have mercy on me and answer me!
d. 2Pet 3:18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the honor both now and on that eternal day.
e. John 16:33 I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In the world you have trouble and suffering, but take courage – I have conquered the world.”
f. Ps 139:6 Your knowledge is beyond my comprehension; it is so far beyond me, I am unable to fathom it.
PS Don’t trust single pulled out verses. Read the context. I remember my first experience of hearing God through the Bible. I read a lot of context trying to find a single verse. It was harder then because no computers found words lickety split. This turned out to be a blessing because I got to hear the whole story. It is amazing what Jesus did and does for me every day.
Some videos I like: