Good day! Good day! Good evening! 🙂
I hope you have all been doing well.
I know it has been a while since we last spoke. Two weeks is a really long time for me not to write. But then again, I’m learning it’s not just about updating my blog regularly, it is also about, whether what I write is true before God.
As I have been engaging my heart in meditation for these past two weeks, I thought about you. Yes you — my beautiful readers.
There are days I usually wonder, “who reads my blog?” Some times I have this pressure not to have a dormant blog, to always ensure that my blog is active and there is always something new to share.
And I have been struggling with this issue for a while now because this means my motive for writing could be tainted. But God spoke to me about it and other issues through a movie I watched about cross-country races. I could tell you so much about the movie but what grabbed my attention were two specific verses. And I would like to travel with them for the rest of the year and hopefully the rest of my life.
Whatever it is I do, should always be to the glory of God. Before I speak, write, purchase, eat, sign, date, whatever…., I must always ask, does this glorify God or does it glorify me? A hard task! but not an impossible one because I know God just needs a willing heart to work this out.
Therefore even with my writing, it’s not about the number of posts I publish in order to keep my blog updated, but whether what I write is true and if my sole purpose is to write so that God may receive all the glory.
So, my beautiful reader, as I began in this post. I really do hope that you are doing well and, if not, that’s okay too. There is nothing wrong with not doing well and this also does not mean that the reason why we are not doing well is because God is punishing us. These days I say to myself, “as long as I can still say today, God is still in the business of grace, not condemnation. Precept upon precept, you know,— Isaiah 28:10? (I just googled the verse, I only knew that small part in my head. You should read the whole of it as well as the chapter too.)”
And so this is the reason I am writing this post today.
You could be a first time reader, a constant reader, a once-in-a while reader on my blog. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that God is concerned with both you and I.
It could be you are a reader who is encompassed with so many trials, burdened by sins and temptations. You could be facing so many obstacles, disappointments, sufferings and all types of heavy emotions.
It could be you are wrestling battles silently daily not having anybody to share with or even have several people you have shared with but they don’t truly and really understand you.
It could be you woke up today wondering where your next meal is going to come from or even the resources for just the basic needs.
It could also be you are content, grateful and thankful for so many things despite the circumstances.
It could be you constantly struggle with anxieties, worries, preoccupations and you are always on edge not knowing what your life is becoming.
It could be you are constantly afraid because the world seems to be spinning out of its orbit of-late. Diseases, hate-crimes, violence, hunger, famines and the horrible occurrences we are seeing on the news every single day.
It could be you have given up hope on so many things. Maybe even on God. You have no idea why people keep saying that God understands, or He has a good plan for you, or His timing is perfect.
It could be that you are not even concerned with all these things, you are just moving with the motions.
It could be you are wondering where I am going with all these. Thinking, “she better not say God cares or something cliché about God understanding…”
Well, that being true, that He does care, and He does understand. Whatever it is you could be going through…
Just speak to God about it from the heart. Tell God your heart. Speak to Him and be honest with the things that are bothering you, the situations, whatever it is.
Many times we are tempted to cover things up with our friends and family. But God is not man. He knows us better than we even know ourselves. He sees our hearts and even knows the evil and wickedness that our hearts are capable of.
One time, there was this colleague where I once worked. Let me call this colleague Penny for this post. I couldn’t stand Penny. I usually prayed some hypocritical prayers or what I thought would pass as ‘christian-like prayers‘, saying, “Thank you Lord for Penny, I pray that you may change her. Give me the grace to work with her.”
Doesn’t sound much like a hypocritical prayer does it? It’s a very good request to God. But in all honesty, I wasn’t thankful to God for Penny. My heart was seething with anger whenever I saw her approaching me or received her email. I just wanted to slap the bejaysus out of her and respond very rudely to the snarky comments she would normally make about my work.
It seemed as though that grace wasn’t coming, because each day, I dreaded seeing her.
Finally, I expressed my true feelings to God and I am not trying to sell to you some sort of method, that God miraculously sent me some grace after this. But with just that, being honest; I learnt that firstly, I couldn’t really hide anything from God, secondly, it was therapeutic to get that anger and resentment out of my heart, and thirdly, I changed my prayer to a more honest one. “God, I can’t stand Penny, I don’t like to see her, she irritates me and I really can’t stand her! Please give me the wisdom and grace to deal with her or else one day I might just give in and slap her.”
Most days I still felt like slapping her, but, with just this honest expression, I learnt that my heart was equally capable of wickedness and that I needed grace maybe even more than she needed it.
With time, I am learning that God appreciates honesty. He responds to an honest heart. A true, honest, broken, bleeding, needy heart.
One struggle we usually experience while following Christ is overcoming the desires of our flesh. There are days, I honestly don’t feel like writing even after having God impress something on my heart to write about. It is easier to make excuses about why I didn’t write or do something I know I ought to have done, but being honest, even if it is hard, allows God to work with us.
So tell God your heart. Be honest. Be true. Be vulnerable with Him. David understood being honest with God too. He sang in many of His Psalms about the knowledge of God concerning us. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.
1 O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
2 You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. 3 You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways. 4 For there is not a word on my tongue, But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether. 5 You have hedged me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it.
7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?
8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
13 For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb.
15 My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
So what and where can we hide from God really? He knows everything. Every secret thought and every desire we have including the sinful desires. Being honest with Him shows Him as well, that we can trust Him to help us. I promise He doesn’t judge like man. And according to me, this is one of my best attributes about Him. This attribute called, grace.
One day, I intend to write about this wonderful attribute of His. I can’t quite understand it. Knowing that I deserve punishment, eternal death, scolding, rejection, abandonment and hell; but instead, He grants mercy, forgiveness, peace, rest, love, acceptance, eternal life and even the promise that even I myself, cannot fathom the good things that He has in store for me.
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him. I Corinthians 2:9
I just can’t believe it! No wonder slapping Penny now became hard because, if I got what I had coming! Good Lord have mercy! Because I deserved some slapping too!
And I also believe this too, is the mystery of salvation. When we humble ourselves before God and recognize that we are unable to do so many things by our own strength. In fact, we can do nothing on our own, because in reality He holds the breath of our life in just one word. No wonder, there is nothing you can give to God that He doesn’t have already because,
A broken and true heart is all that He requires. And David too, knew this words quite well.
6 Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.
16 For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart— These, O God, You will not despise.
God is able to reside in a place that is broken and hurting so that He can do a wonderful work. He is in the business of restoration. He is in the business of giving beauty for ashes. He is in the business of grace. That way, even you yourself will acknowledge.
Now, before I conclude. Remember I told you about the movie that I watched and the two verses that stood out for me? The other verse is,
24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.
25 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.
Even though He is in the business of grace, His grace will one day run out as His word teaches us.
While the whole world is trying to win in life, or make it or break it. Jesus said, with Him, you win by losing. Very interesting right?
And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.
It could be you are in a space where you feel as though you are losing. If you are using your strength to make things happen, let me just give you some advice. Stop just where you are! Because you are going to keep losing and without even any hope.
Surrender your life to Jesus Christ and allow God to show you the better plan He has for your life and not what you think is good for you. Humbly go to Jesus and tell Him your heart. Be honest about your sins,( remember not hypocritical-like) and He will grant you forgiveness and help you overcome. He will work your life out if you let Him. He desires that we submit our lives totally to Him so that He can save them. This is how we win.
While the whole world is running wildly in one direction, Jesus will be leading you in another direction. Your friends and family might think you’ve gone crazy. But this is how you win. I promise.
It could be you are in a space where you feel as though you are losing. If you are with Christ, then you are not really losing. Remember, No eye has seen, nor has it entered the heart of man, what God has prepared for those who love Him.
Follow Jesus and be honest with Him. Tell Him your heart.