Tuesday, August 7, 2012

being stripped for Jesus

Well, here I am. I have been a little crazy lately and forgot about the blog. Maybe sometimes the journey gets a little bit busy that I forget to document it, which is fine except when life gets busy with all the works of what the Lord has and one forgets about faith. Faith is, after all, the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. This may or may not be a little lesson the Lord has been teaching me=)  Aahummm…(clears throat dramatically)    

Ryan and I have been in an extremely fun(I say fun in really wanting to use a different word but for the sake of offending less will say fun with a hint of sarcasm)season. The Lord has been stripping us of ourselves. It seems as if He is continually doing this in our lives. You’d think we’d be butt bum naked by now with all this stripping of ourselves but no the Lord keeps pull pull pulling at the crud we’ve gotten hidden in our hearts. It sucks, it really does, but it is so good and (might I add) necessary.   Of recently in one instance of when I was praying/whining  to the Lord about all these ‘needs’ that we have that we hadn’t received an answer to yet, the Lord gently but sternly reminded me that I don’t ‘need’ anything but Him. What?!?! But what about the dog food, Lord, or the water bill or my integrity or or or ?!?! And again I hear, “All you need is me.” WOW, what a bold and confounding thought. I could easily spout this for years but I have never had to have faith in Him for myself in this way. All we really really really need is Jesus, our King, Savior and Lord over all. I mean If God is the one who made us, isn’t He capable of sustaining our bodies AND our lives. In case you are wondering, YES, YES HE IS! Amen to that!  

In Another such instance in this season I was again praying/whining to God but this time it was more of a ‘Why don’t you love me God? Why are you taking all this stuff from me? Aren’t you hearing what’s going on?’ type prayer. I mean, I was really feeling sorry for myself and making myself some sort of a martyr.  But then I again heard the Savior gently say to me, “I don’t need or want any of this stuff that I have taken from you or holding back on giving. I want your heart.” The Lord wasn’t taking this stuff or putting us in this place because He wanted us to not have it or wanted us to be broken, He just wants our hearts. HE loves us and desires us to desire Him above all riches or wealth or fame. He was literally stripping us of things that we had placed before Him, whether they be works, stuff or even just pride. It is so easy to make ourselves little secret idols in our lives. Our hearts can be so deceived by this age that we can sometimes not even know they are there. That is what the Lord was/is doing to us. He is teaching us to have total dependence on Him which brings independence in Him. We should as believers desire this! I’m not gonna lie, it sucks like no other a lot of the time but it is good, so good.  See the Lord knew my heart, He knew because He is God that I could say I had faith but I didn’t believe it in my heart. (man looks on the outward appearance but the Lord looks on the heart of man)I was walking in the works and claiming my faith but really in my heart I was faking it. I was relying on my own goodness and faith in money or things and not Him. He didn’t put us in this season to punish us; He put us in this season because HE loves us and desires all our hearts not just part or most of them but ALL of them.  I feel like I am a broken record sometimes but maybe it just takes lots of repeating with me. Lol

Wondering if you have any areas where it is easy to have faith without works or works without faith but not both. James will tell you that it doesn’t work like that. May we all be stripping for Jesus! (Metaphorically not literally=)