Friday, May 12, 2017

The Messyness of the Journey

Today I am reflecting on the journey of recovery that God has had me on.  This time I am reflecting from the vantage point of pride.  I was driving and God began to show me how pride had taken possession of a gift that He had gave me and that I have used to serve Him but in all actuality I was using this gift to serve myself.  Then God backed me up further in the timeline of my life.  He rewound the tape of my life to memories as a child when I had used gifts, talents, attributes, characteristics in such a way as to receive attention and therefore love.  And how all along I told myself that my intentions and motivations were so innocent but in reality my motivations were for the self-life, pride.  I saw in fast forward my journey up to the present, but this time what I saw had a different feeling, a different sense attached to it.  Before when I would reflect I would feel a great sense of pride in what God had done in my life up to now.  I think in some self-loving way I had taken credit for the mercies God has shown me as if I earned them somehow instead of them being given to me freely out of God's goodwill towards me.  This time as the memories blew past my minds eye I felt, messy like how a child grows through their young ages.  They don't plan any of it.  They don't have a clue whats happening and could not in the least claim purposefulness in any of their actions but just, (as it would seem to the unbelieving), happenstance.  But then God whispered to my heart as I drove along with this messy image stopped on the reel in front of my mind's eye, He whispered.  That's the beauty!  The process is not in your control Shannon!  You thought you were making all those choices, that's what you believed but I, Shannon I was directing everything! You believed you were forced to manage it all but I was there in it all. In your attempt to take over for me things got messy.  It would seem to the judgmental eye that you had so blocked my plans with your pride.  But my eyes saw where you really were in the process of healing. It was messy!  But I loved you, anyway, in spite of it, because of it, knowing that messy image was one snapshot along the story of your beautiful journey.  I had allowed that, even willed that it would be just that, messy.  In the end Shannon, you will actually be what pride whispered to you to make you believe that you already were, you will be perfect but I will always be sufficient for you.

Beloved, Is God in control or are you?  Has pride lied to you and convinced you that you are the last best hope for your world?  Are you following Him or is He following you?  Does the spirit of pride keep you from being yourself and sharing yourself with others for fear of vulnerability?  Does pride have you in a superior place with all others at the mercy of your critical observation?  Does pride keep you isolated, locked up, trapped and alone?  Have you used every gift, ability, characteristic, attribute of you and in you to get what you want and all you've got is more empty?  God is waiting for each of us to lay down our pride, choose humility, and surrender control/management of our lives, our loved ones, our image, our careers, our money, our politics, our futures, our needs, our desires and wants and everything or anything else we have gripped tightly to, keeping it from His management, his plans, and purposes.  Laying down pride every day, every hour, every minute and taking up our cross, His cross.

" clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble” (1 Peter 5:5, NKJV).