Bulls-Eye, Lord. Over and out.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010 4 Comments A+ a-

Oh goodness. This is not going to be a fun post to write, but its necessary. One that I stand to benefit from and refer back to over and over again.

I am a work in progress. Every time that I think I’ve claimed victory over an area of my life, God is more than willing to show me that no, in fact, its something that I must consciously resist on a daily basis.

Before I get into it too much, I want to share with you my reasoning for putting my current struggle out there for the whole world to read. Sarah and I had a coffee date last month, and it was good. That scripture that talks about "as iron sharpens iron, so man sharpens another"? She is one of those for me. Neither of us claim to have it all together, but we can be real with each other. We can speak truth to each other and encourage the other in our struggles to be more Godly wives, mothers, sisters, daughters, and even friends.

At our last coffee date, we discussed how so many of us are willing to talk about past struggles. Its so easy to share what God has taught you (past tense) because it meant you came out on the other end. You’ve been through the “fire” and have been refined, you went through the struggles, and it seems easier to share the past. Yet so few us readily admit what we are currently struggling with, we don’t talk about the daily refining, the daily struggles, the lessons being learned in the here and now. Is it shame that stops us? A desire to appear that we have it more together than we do?

I don’t know. But I aim to be more real and to that end, here we go.

God hit His bulls-eye this morning. And yes, I realize its still very early, but apparently He’s been trying to send me this message for a while now. I’ve just been too prideful to hear it until this morning. I’ve learned that when God is trying to teach me something, usually it comes in a theme. Over and over and over again until I’m forced to admit, “Ok God, got it.”

First there was Timmarie’s birthday post in which she admitted that God has shown her that she has a long way to go in the forgiveness department. At that time I thought, “Poor lady. I’m so glad I don’t have that problem.” Hello, Pride! Party of 1.

Then a conviction so deep in the early morning as I realized that I was getting ready to spend time with the Almighty and I had just given in to the flesh and read gossip about a fellow sister in Christ, all while choosing to judge her for her decisions. I believe the conviction went something like this, “Let me get this straight. You’re getting to spend time with ME, yet, you judge another without pulling the log out of your own eye?! Jenn, think about that for a minute.” Bulls-eye.

Then there was the scripture that God placed in my path before I even sat down to my quiet time. “Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs.” Proverbs 10:12 Ok, ok, I got it.

And so here it is folks. I am prideful. Really that’s what it boils down to. I consider myself to be full of grace, full of forgiveness, full of mercy. But the truth of it is, I am prideful and I have such a long way to go before God can completely break me of that sin.

I wrote a list in my journal this morning. Pride makes me judgmental, pride makes me critical, pride makes me unloving. Oh yuck. It sucked to write those words. And the worst part of it is, is that it is so subtle and so sneaky. I don’t even realize that I’ve given into that part of my flesh until I am so deeply entrenched in judgment and criticism, that it takes a huge knock over the head from God to call me out.

So there you have it folks, probably one of my biggest struggles. And a struggle that is currently well and alive right now. God will work on me and I will submit to His lessons; I know I’m not even close to coming out on the other end of this lesson. It is going to be a hot fire that refines me. I will have to choose love over any other human tendency (ie., unforgiveness, judgment, criticism) on a case-by-case basis. Each time I choose love will be a step closer to learning my lesson, but I fully expect that with every step forward will come two steps back. There will be days that I feel particularly snarky and mean, and I’m sure on those days God will place an even higher number of opportunities for me to choose love.

I sit here with coffee at my elbow, a little boy in my lap, and my heart heavy with confession. I’m squirming under the heaviness that conviction brings, and in utter contempt that I have once again proven to need continued lessons on humility and pridefulness.

Ok, Lord, your daughter has heard you loud and clear. Let the refining process begin.

I’m a coffee drinking, book reading, laundry procrastinating, husband and children loving, mess of a woman who believes that chips and salsa can fix anything. We have chickens running around the backyard, a mountain of dishes in the sink, and on any given morning, I have at least 10 school forms that need my signature or initials. It’s a crazy life {I prefer to call it controlled chaos}, but its ours.

4 comments

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Mary
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9:01 AM delete

((HUGS))

Every day I'm learning that the quicker I can admit and 'fess up the refining, although it still hurts like heck, is made a bit easier because I welcome it.

I so appreciate your openess and the risk you took today being so transparent. I'm praying for you my friend. God definitely has big things in store for you! This just brings you another step closer to Him. Isn't it awesome?!

Much love
Mary

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Timmarie
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10:18 AM delete

Here, here. Thank you for keepin it real.

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Christine
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9:14 PM delete

I love how honest and real you are.
We are all a work in progress and praise God for who he is and how patient he is with us.

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Becky
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8:04 PM delete

Good for you for laying it all out there! It is so much easier to keep it all in and pretend there is no issue to be dealt with than to admit it and start dealing with it. I'll be praying for you as you go through the refining process!

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