Originally published Thursday, 17 December 2015.
Kids fight back my words of instruction. I get anxious.
The car won't start. I get anxious.
Relational conflict brews. I get anxious.
The day looks difficult ahead. I get anxious.
It looks like I am going to be late. I get anxious.
The schedule appears too much to manage. I get anxious.
Traffic sits. I get anxious.
Temper tantrums of toddlers ensue. I get anxious.
An unexpected bill arrives. I get anxious.
Home issues pop up. I get anxious.
Do you ever feel like me? So busy preparing your heart for tsunami problems, that your heart feels unprepared for the momentary tiny ruptures of life?
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. (Ps. 139:23)
God is testing me to know my anxious thoughts.
I can't help but wonder, when he does, if he likes -
not my biblical, spiritual and theological heart -
but my moment-by-moment heart?
And why such a clean one want to see such anxious filth?
After much time treading through the waters of wonder, I arrived at these points:
God tests us, because he wants to bless us.
He wants to know us, because he loves us.
He still thinks of us, in precious terms, even if he knows our most ugly terms (Ps. 139:17).
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. Ja. 1:2-4
He gives us baby tests, to applaud our baby steps of trust.
He sends us exams, in hopes that we walk across his graduation stage of peace.
He prepares us, because he truly is preparing us.
He is not trying to wear us, because he doesn't care for us.
But loving us, because he wants love - in us.
Trials are higher education learning opportunities that build the brain power of perseverance and endurance that deliver us to the grade of "complete" in Christ Jesus.
Why would I run from these opportunities? Why would I fear the establishment that is meant to establish me?
Shouldn't I be looking at trials not as crying grounds, but as blessing grounds? Not as fearing rooms, but as giving rooms? Not in doubt, but in faith - of the mighty work that God is about to do in me?
Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Ja. 1:12
So, may we descend on "scary" like falcons,
driving into them at speeds of 200 miles per hour,
not tremoring, but trusting,
not resisting, but persisting,
not fighting, but flying.
Soaring high above the worldly,
operating beyond the grime of life,
seeing our movement as on the horizon of God's great opportunity.
Then we will see the glory of his test,
giving permission for him to be our rest.
And suddenly, a great shift persists,
for on our plains we must see a new way,
from spiritual eyes - and not earthly,
from godly plains and not normal.
And we do.
We go with God.
We go to beauty, peace and power -
to heights unseen
and places unknown,
and lands untraversed,
in the completion of his will,
in the fullness of his grace,
in the lightness of his wind.
We find ourselves powerful not our powerless,
trusting the sacred - in the sticks of the mess -
for here, it's the place, the power place - and the resting place - all the same,
the place where God weaves holiness into the very fabric of our being.
We rest down and continue to fly on his triumphant ways.
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