Saturday, July 22, 2017

A Lesson I Learned



                 

Hello everyone.
You know it really is pretty funny how God works.
My dad always used to say "man plans, and God laughs."
While I don't think he's up there snickering and countering our plans, I feel the principle is very true. Quite often our plans don't align with what God has in store. 
But a lot of times that's a very good thing. Some of my plans could leave me destitute, bitter, and in a jail cell pretty easily. 
All this to say that God shook up one of my plans. I set out last week to start reading my Bible. Again. It's just terrible that I have to work so hard at something that's so good for me. But anyway, I didn't decide to read it every day, or read a certain amount every day, because I knew if I started out with a bunch of rules right off the bat that I'd fall on my face. So, thus far I've read about every other day, and even that much has drastically improved my mental wellbeing. 
See, I started this venture to learn how to be a mom. How God wants me to be. So I thought I'd go through the Bible and read about all the mom's. They usually get overlooked by the preachers, but God thought enough of them to tell their story. I'd just finished reading in Genesis, and I'm super familiar with Moses' mother, so I skipped some of those early ones to be visited later and went to 1 Samuel to read about Hannah. And it was good. I came away from it with the idea that we need to do right by our children in the Lord's will, whether or not it's convenient or pleasurable for us. Now I'm not planning at all to drop Henry off with pastor once he's weaned and come visit him once a year, but that could apply to anything. My middle sister for instance is wanting to possibly take a missions trip to Columbia once she graduates. All that's going through my parents minds right now (and mine, I'll admit) is drug cartels and gang wars and all sorts of terrifying things. But if Columbia is Gods will for her my parents are going to have to accept that. Or it could be on a much smaller scale. God flat out says to discipline your children. That's not really a pleasant thing for a parent. 
But I'm certain that's not what God had for me that day. He sat back and said "yeah, chapter one was good Mom, now go on to chapter two. That's where we really need to be." 
So I read chapter two. It's Hannah's prayer to God after he gives her a son. It basically talks about how mighty God is; how he kills and makes alive, he sets men in the positions they're in, and that he takes care of his children. 
The verses that struck me were 1, 3, and 9. 
In the King James, that's: 
...My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 
Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogance come out of your mouth: for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him are actions weighed. 
He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail. 

There's a person I have to deal with fairly frequently that I honestly had a good deal of hate toward, for years. There's no avoiding this person, and I'm expected to treat them not just civilly, but warmly, and frankly, I was getting bitter by the second about it. This person has wronged me personally, and my family in so many ways and on so many occasions and I just couldn't find it in me to show Christian love toward this person. 
God knew that. He knew that when I prayed about this person it was in more of a bolt of lightning from the sky sort of way. Not that they would come to love and repentance in him. 
Hannah wrote these verses about her husbands other wife (wife in law?), because she picked on her relentlessly because Hannah had no children and she had several. That would be enough right there to make me fly into a rage. 
But here, Hannah doesn't run to this woman and say "look here, witch. I've got a son now too. Now what you gonna say, you ugly old toad?" 
She says she rejoiced in the Lord. She was happy with God and his salvation. And that he lifted her up above the woman who ridiculed her. It didn't come through any smack talk of her own. It came from her joyful contentment in him. 
She tells this woman to not brag and vaunt herself. That no matter how high and mighty you act up town, because of how much you have or what your last name is, God knows your actions and the motives behind them. 
God will take care of his children. He goes to bat for them, so we don't have to fret about it. The wicked will be dealt with. No one is going to get by on their own power. 

When I read those verses I just kinda sat back and said "ok God."
This is not to say that when that person does something, again, that it doesn't irk me. I still feel upset, it still hurts. But, so far anyway, I haven't been overcome with rage that festers and boils for days at a time. My anger hasn't caused me to sin anymore. 
And I've been praying for this person. Like truly praying. That if they don't know Jesus as their savior that they would come to. That if they do know him, that they would return to him and start living the way they should. That in either of those things that they would be convicted of their wrong doing and stop it. That the Lord would help me to be kind to them through it all .
Part of me feels like "and Lord, if all this could just happen tomorrow that would be great." But I'm sure God's smiling saying "I think we're going to learn patience next." 

4 comments:

  1. I love that, when your reading the bible and some verses come up that perfectly apply to what you are going through and most times with some sort of idea of how to deal with it. God truly is amazing.

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  2. Thank you so much for sharing, Maddie! I recently started trying to be more consistent with my Bible readings as well. :) And just a couple days ago I read Psalm 2, where it talks about men planning and God laughing. :)

    I'm so glad you've been able not to sin in your anger! That is SO great!

    teensliveforjesus.blogspot.com

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