I have been struggling a lot with some hurtful things that people said and the fact that some loved ones are pulling further away from God. I am not going to go in talk about what happened, but when I was looking back at the way I have been feeling lately – so sad and grieved and in a depth of emotional pain I found something again in the Bible when I was not even looking for this verse…
Hebrews 12:11 “For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it [a harvest of fruit which consists in righteousness–in conformity to God’s will in purpose, thought, and action, resulting in right living and right standing with God]. “
It’s actually pretty funny that God brought this verse to me at a time when I didn’t understand what was going on and why I was feeling this way. At first in previous posts I talked about the physical discipline, but there is also an emotional discipline that comes into focus. God can bring us into a time of pain and grief, and you don’t understand why and what is happening to you. This pain was totally unrelated to the bipolar disorder, but it had more to do with my own relationship with God and areas I needed to work on. So I have been really sad and even at times wanting to turn away from God because the deeper I got the more pain I felt. Now I realized that God has been disciplining me- not punishing me, but He has been making me His disciple through letting me walk through the walls of forgiveness and learning to reach out to Him. I went to the Word today seeking Him and seeing if there could be just one verse that could just reach out and speak out to me that would be enough. It was almost like if I could reach out and touch the hem of His garment then I would be healed. I would experience the joy that I so needed. I would be able to get out of these lies that satan has been feeding me and stop tormenting myself because I know the Truth lies in His Word. But I had to be very careful because even satan can use God’s Word to twist it and make you feel bad about yourself. I felt so wicked and so not close to God, but the Truth was that He was making me a true disciple by letting me go through this grief and pain so that I can learn how to be close to Him. It is the only way. God uses our pain and the deepness of our emotions to burn out anything that is not of Him so we can be pure like gold.
I realize that God is my potter and I am the clay. With each circumstance, with each season, with each molding He is drawing us close to Him, and when we don’t see that we can be stuck in either a pity party or we may not have an understanding of why things are going on. The Truth is that God really loves us and He wants to see us grow, and He doesn’t want to hurt us like I mentioned before. It may seem like I am expressing the same things over and over again through my posts, but it is a lesson that I am trying to learn this time in my life.
I don’t know about you, but I can be a very hard learner when it comes to the things of God. God may have to show me things a million times over to see that this is what He meant. I can be doing very good, enjoying life, making progress, and then all of a sudden I realize that I haven’t been doing what God wanted me to do. Instead of going through a cycle of repenting and asking for forgiveness and trying to be better next time, I go into this cycle of really beating myself up about it, and condemning myself because I push myself away from God and closer to the lies of satan. This is what my therapist calls self-sabotage, but it isn’t my plan or purpose to do that, it isn’t even God’s plan or purpose to do that, but it is satan’s purpose to do that with all the distractions, and poisonous darts that he puts in your way that causes you to detract from the good that you are doing. It causes you to really know God and realize eventually, that “Aha!” this is what He is doing. It also takes a little bit of knowing who you are and exactly how you will react to a situation. It also takes a little bit of knowing who exactly satan is in this world and what his strategies are.
What I can’t emphasize enough is that God uses every pain or bad situation and turns it around for good. It is so we will have fruit and bear character that would bring fruit into our lives. Some people are mistaken in thinking that when we receive the Holy Spirit and become a Christian or become converted then all of a sudden “BAM!” everything turns around and just falls into place. Well, I”m sorry that’s just not the way life works. We have to go through a lot of struggles in life and whether we are Christian and Holy Spirit filled or not we are still going to have problems and pain. We are not going to be happy and joyful a 100% of the time. We are not going to be free of making mistakes and having failures because life is all about that. Life is all about making mistakes and learning through them and finding God through this process. Some people will start to have a peace that they have not experienced before and some people will be free of addicitions, but we have to remember that this is all a process, and you can only focus on one day at a time.
Sometimes Christians who are heavily in the Word of God and spending all their time studying the Bible don’t take the time to enjoy the simple things in life. God wanted us to enjoy the simple things in life and that’s why He spoke in Parables and stories so that simple people could take away the Truth in a form in which was applicable in life. God can speak to you in so many ways and in so many situations. He doesn’t have to use just the Bible or His Word to speak to us because that is just one manifestation of the Living Word of God. He is multifacted. God can speak to us using the beautiful things in creation. God can speak to us while we are doing things we enjoy like our hobbies. Some people have pets and God can speak through pets and children.
What we have to do is to find a way in which we can experience God’s love and still experience life – after all He wants us to have “life and have life more abundantly” and the only way to do that is to live your life. If you become obsessed with God and you don’t have the right focus it can be a detriment to you without you even realizing it because if your thoughts and life are not planted on good soil they will not be nourished and produce good fruit. So you can be super obsessed with God and the Bible, but you are not producing fruit in your life by taking the time and living out your life and fulfilling the destiny God has in purpose for you.
I believe in Heaven it is just going to be like one big party all the time. But Heaven is not just one place in the sky that you can only see after you die. God’s purpose is to see His Kingdom and Heaven here on earth and the one way we do that is by letting Heaven live in our hearts.
It is important to set goals and reach out to achieve those goals. It is important to take out the time to go and “smell the roses”. It is important to have just some “me” time when you can be by yourself and just take in the things in and let all the tensions and stresses of life go. If you can’t go out and give someone a hug today – then find something to enjoy. I guess my problem is that I have been so focused on my problems that I didn’t take out any time for myself and focus on the little things in life. God is bigger than my problem.