Like a Screaming Kid at the Store

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.
2 Corinthians 1:3-5

I spend a lot of time with people from a culture where saving face and not offending or inconveniencing others are the most important things a person do. How many times has someone told me, “I have to buy that for her, or she will cry,” or something very similar.

Though I don’t have children of my own, I did grow up in a culture where parents don’t necessarily bow to the children’s wishes. So, I often mention to these other parents that if the child knows that she must only cry, in order to change the answer from no to yes, she will do that for everything.

(I don’t want to get into whether or not I should offer unsolicited parenting advice. It is what it is, and I’m just using it as an illustration.)

Just a moment ago, I was reading another Christian blog. The blogger was writing about the Gospel message and its sufficiency in a believer’s life.

It is no secret that I deeply desire to be married, and feel very disappointed that I will be 40 in less than three months, but still single. Though I will not sin in order to have a relationship or to get married, I am concerned over the idea that marriage may be more important to me than my relationship with the Lord.

The blogger also cited the verse above about God being the one who gives us all comfort. This made me pause a moment. I had to consider whether I turn to God in my disappointment over still being single.

Do I turn to Him and allow Him to comfort me, just because of who He is?

Or will I only be comforted by Him, when (or if) He answers my prayers for a husband with a yes?

Like the child in the store, will I just scream until I get what I want? Or will I calm down and trust what my Heavenly Father has in store for my life? Up until now, I think I’ve mostly just been screaming.

Don’t get me wrong: my desire to be married to a godly man, with whom I can serve the Lord, has not diminished in the past 20 minutes. I do hope, however, to be able receive the comfort and love that He so freely gives me. I want to accept Him for who He is, not for what He can give me.

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New Year’s Eve Revelation

i started this post on New Year’s Eve, but was not satisfied with it. Truly, I still am not satisfied. However, I have not posted nearly as much as I’ve wanted to. So, here is my somewhat incomplete offering.

As I have done for the past several years, I took some time today to pray and reflect on my year with a journal entry. Usually, the entry turns out to be a list of events and changes (and more than likely, heartaches) that occurred during the year.

This year, as I writing, I noticed something different. I wasn’t describing events. I was describing lessons learned. I was charting my growth in the Lord.

This, in and of itself, became another evidence to me that God is with me and is growing me.

True, there have been many instances of deep, deep pain. (Happily, very few of them were romantic.) Still, God has revealed so much to me through this pain. Unfortunately, most of what has been revealed to me have been areas in which I have sinned and fallen short.

Later today, as I was driving, I was listening to a call-in radio show. The host was asking listeners to call in to share praise reports and give glory to God for what he had done in their lives in 2014. I started thinking of all of the ups and downs of my own year.

I thought about how every year has come and gone and has never transpired in a way that I could ever predict.

Still, through all of that, God has been there. He has been right beside me.

Today, I realized that I’ve always imagined the Lord as looking down on me from afar. I’ve (unintentionally) imagined him caring and directing what happens in my life, but also being detached in some way.

When I realized how wrong I am about that, I felt a new excitement. I felt a new motivation in my walk with God. Realizing that he is walking beside me through everything helps me know that I can handle everything! Sure, it might be through a flood of tears, but I recognize even more the extent of presence and power in my life.

I truly dislike falling into cliched-sounding statements, but fear that I have. Still, it’s very exciting to me to have finally grasped something that I have always known, but apparently have never truly apprehended.