So I had an earth shattering realization this evening…
Did you know that the quote “God helps those who help themselves” is NOT found in the bible?? I may be alone on this one, but I grew up with the teaching that this “fact” is biblically true. (Of course I also grew up believing that Mary and Joseph were indeed NOT married, thanks to a Sunday school teacher. That was pretty embarrassing when that discussion came out when I was well into my 20s.) However, I have spent my entire life thinking that this was in the bible.
Lately I have been told countless times that I need to “Be still” and “Wait on God” and “Hand it over to Him.” The whole time I’m thinking….but, how can I do that and help myself?? No wonder the two conflicting sides were always at war in my head! If I hand something over then I have nothing to work with.
Now, it doesn’t mean that I can just sit back and do diddley. That waiting for God to cook my supper or make doctor appointments will amount to anything. It doesn’t mean that my body will miraculously grow a nice firm tush and wart-free feet by simply twiddling my thumbs and “waiting on God” to work His magic. I do need to put effort into my life.
God still expects us to do things. He expects us to treat others with kindness and compassion. To feed the hungry and clothe the poor. To praise and pray and worship. To get up and follow Jesus and to always grow in our faith and to reach others with the truth of His goodness. In order to do any of that we can’t just sit back and count the cracks in the ceiling.
There are many many things that I can not control and THOSE are the things I need to let go of and wait on Him. As the prayer goes “God, grant me serenity to accept the things I can not change, courage to change the things that I can, and wisdom to know the difference.” There are so many things I can not change, only He can.
I can’t change someone’s heart. I can’t change the hurt I’ve caused someone. I can’t change the past. He can….if it is His will. I need to be willing to accept whatever His will is and to remember that His timing is perfect. That even years of pain and being burdened is done because of His timing in creating something good for me. He allowed years of me being picked on, pushed down, and battered in order to break me. He then allowed me to treat others with such hatred and ill-will to break me further and possibly break them as well. Then He allowed me to see both sides of my life so that I would know which was right and which was wrong and how I had broken His heart. Despite it all, though, He still offered me grace and He still loves me. He simply wants to fill the holes in my life with His grace. To make me whole again.
In order to allow Him to fill my holes, I need to be still. Kind of like getting a filling at the dentist…you want to sit still for it! I’m not about to grab the tools from the dentist and go to work on my own mouth. It was the crappy job I did on my mouth that landed me in the chair in the first place. So why am I so intent on trying to fix my own spiritual holes? Up until today I kept thinking I had to help myself in order to get help from God.
Now, dental fillings, yes…I need to take control of that one by making a dentist apt and showing up for it. Spiritual fillings…my spirit was never mine to begin with, so how can I heal it, much less that of someone else? It’s a gift from God and He has complete control over it, no matter how hard I try to pry the controls away. I just simply need to do what He says I need to and He’ll do the rest.Tags: Be Still, faith, forgiveness, God, grace, spirit, timing, Truth, wait
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