15 Nov
Concrete Promises - Week 14

I seem to have this weird sickness that tries to infect my joy by keeping me apathetic towards everything this beautiful life has to offer. Amongst all the miracles and common blessings, my mind fights violently to keep me in a place of dulled excitement. I often experience the nauseating feeling that a dark loneliness outweighs the lighted comfort our Savior provides. Because we cannot tangibly experience Christ, it is easy to get tired, it is easy to take our eyes off Him, and it easy to think that life is a series of mundane events that have no significance. These easy grumblings of life can quickly take over ones outlook and if we’re not careful it’s a place that we can get trapped in.

Looking for anything that can help us climb out of our entrapment, we turn to those things that have no significance, those things of distorted value, and those things that falsely seem to bring us closer to contentment. I cannot tell you how quickly I am swayed into thinking there’s got to be something more to life than deepening our relationship with God, how quickly I turn to substances or others for relief, how quickly I’m exhausted in trying to remain positively hopeful. However, in searching for these other things, our pits grow deeper. The walls we’re scaling grow taller and our temporary happiness widens the wounds it was so desperately trying to fill in the first place.

Along with my apathetic sickness, I have haunting thoughts of unbelief. I am tricked into thinking that engaging with God makes no difference and that my love for Him is a fabrication of reality. Prayer makes no difference because God is in control, He is greater than I, and He will carry out His plan regardless of the life I choose to live. While some of that may have a small bit of truth in it, the accuracy is not on point. Prayer and the choices we make do make a difference. Nothing about our relationship with God changes Him, but it does change us, and it changes how we view Him. While these changes may be harder to see in ourselves rather than others, they are changes that comes in subtleties. They are changes that lead us into a greater understanding and changes that can sometimes be hard to describe. These sometimes-miniscule changes to our lives shallow the walls of discouragement, they make them easier to climb, and they eventually lead us out of the shadowed pit into the light of the Promised Land.

 “Because of His glory and excellence, He has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share His divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.” (2 Peter 1:4) These promises that enable us to share in His divinity, because He is living inside each one of us, gives us authority to “heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons,” in His name. (Matthew 10:8) These promises allow us to “joyously draw water from the springs of Salvation.” (Isaiah 12:3) They are given to us so that, joy may be in us, and that our joy may be made full. (John 15:11) These promises from God, and the many more I have yet to write about, never leave us, and they are never broken. For these are the truths that live in us and will be with us forever. (2 John 1:2)

While we learn how to stand on these promises, we must also learn how to trust them. Though these promises from God are infallible, our engagement with Him makes them living realities. Though the Lord freely gives, it is our choices, our prayers, that allow us to experience more of His greatness, and there is none more greater than He. For myself, I have to pray for the desire to follow Christ. I have to pray to love our Creator more. I have to pray for excitement, for knowledge, for discernment, and for understanding. I have to pray for leadings and for strength. I have to pray to remember. I have to pray for help in keeping my eyes on Him because the hauntings and the sickness are just as real as the glories. I have to pray and unfortunately I wish it came easier to me.

As we crawl into this New Year, I’m praying to experience more of these promises I’m continuing to discover. A life with Christ, though the strangest I’ve ever known, is also the sweetest I’ve ever tasted. It is the highest I’ve ever been and the most loved I’ve ever felt. While the depths of our walls may seem never ending the love of our Savior is deeper. Growing in our trust and stretching our faith is not an easy process, I am the first to testify of this. But may I also be the first to testify that a life without God is a life without purpose. May I be the first to testify that the things I am able to do through Him are things that I could not have done without Him. May I be the first to rejoice in His greatness and one who never grows lukewarm or cold in His promises.

Pushing into His love and increasing in His knowledge may bring sorrow, but it will also bring a life that is considerably more significant than any one we could live on our own. Christ, being all that matters, is the One who created everything, the One who is timeless, the One who sustains it all, and the One who cares about you far more than anyone else can, far more than anyone else can understand. “Now all glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to Him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)

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