Thursday, September 30, 2010

Self Sufficiency

There is something that is just not quite right lately in my relationship with the Lord. It is almost as if my heart is hardened and I am not easily moved, I am more irritable, I am less trusting, slower to forgive, quicker to hold grudges, angrier when speaking with God, easily frustrated at my lack of perfection. Something isn't right.

So I am asking for prayer... I am asking God to break my heart; that I would surrender wholly to him. A friend admonished me the other day saying something like, "Why are you doing Impact? Are you getting anything out of it? Because you're always grumbling about it." Truth pierces the heart. As she dug deeper we discovered some deep rooted pride and laziness. Sometimes I don't feel as if I need God. I grew up in a good home, worked hard in school, made good choices, made good friends, got a good job, etc etc. I don't really "need" God. I have money for rent, a place to lay my head, clothes, food, friends, family...and while I said all of this I cringed understanding there may be repercussions for my ignorance and arrogance.

In my head, I know that all things are given by God. He brings rain and sunshine to the good and the evil. But my heart is so stubborn and rebels against complete dependence on him. The only thing I know to do is to pray and beg God for mercy and that I would be stripped of my pride, that my sinfulness would be realized and that my heart would break for what breaks his.

You know those automatic carwashes? Where you just drive your car in, pay the quarters and it scrubs away and you drive out all shiny and clean and do nothing except autopilot? I've been on autopilot for the last few years of my life... maybe my whole life. Thinking if I just go to church, camp, christian school, church internships, mission trips, or discipleship schools that I'll come out all shiny and clean with no effort on my part. Thats where laziness comes in... I spend time with God and do the "right" things... read scripture, pray, occasionally meditate or fast... and expect that just going through the motions, I will be changed. But God doesn't want my sacrifices... he wants my whole life; he wants devotion; he wants a life bent on obedience.

Maybe I am jealous of those around me who have incredible spiritual experiences... who have marked changes in their lives. But I'm not looking for an experience; I'm looking for a change... a life long change. A commitment, A surrender, A courage that is not of this world, but is a difference that draws people to the unconditional love, comfort, peace, and trust that comes out of a relationship with an Almighty God.

I pray that God would honor this request and it would not be by my striving and efforts but by the grace of God.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Generational Blessings

Sometimes I wonder why God has blessed me so much. I wonder why I was born into a family with a nurturing and loving mom and a dad who taught me what beauty is, the value of working hard, and integrity. Two people who stood before God 27 years ago and stuck to their commitment, selflessly raised 3 girls and continue to take an active interest in our lives.

I have grandparents who raised their 7 children in the Catholic church to be upstanding citizens who care about their home and family, their community and the world we live in. My sisters and I have managed to escape the lures of this world and avoided life altering rebellion.

I am just in awe at how God has blessed my family for generations. I wonder if my great great Grandpa on either side realized the full extent and consequences of his actions. I am so completely thankful and want the legacy of God's special blessing and favor to continue on my family for generations to come.

They say in trusting God, sometimes you have to look at the past to see how he's proven faithful because it can be hard to see it in the present. My past is full of the faithfulness of God and his divine protection. Thank you Father.