12When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
My head is spinning about a book I have been reading and I have really learned so much that my heart could burst. For now I just need to cut to the chase and jump right in with what I feel I can not type quickly enough.
Ever since I can remember I have been a thinker. I can remember being a little girl and analyzing certain situations and having a check inside of me that what I was thinking through, regarding certain life circumstances, was not normal or healthy. This is not always a good thing especially when it comes to taking unruly thoughts captive. Our minds are so stinking powerful. We over analyze, drudge up the past, think on all the things of this world system and etc. I literally can start trying to self diagnose and google web md and start thinking I have all kinds of issues based on a simple symptom. In dealing with panic attacks due to my mitral valve, I have even set off other panic attacks by fearing the thought of having one. We can meditate on so many things: "I'm fat", "I'm ugly", "I am a bad mom", "I am a failure", and on and on. When we meditate on these things and they are not true or do not motivate change we will be pulled down into the pit of self-destruction. There are some things in your life and mine that are true, real, and have happened that are good and bad. You may have faced some serious rejection, maybe your parents were alcoholics, you may have been co-dependent for as long as you can remember. You may have been abused, raped, misunderstood, misused, or betrayed. Just as we can not focus on past trophies, we can not dwell (literally pitch a tent and camp out on the spots of your affliction) on all of our "wrongs" for the rest of our days. Hey are those things awful? YES! YES, I am not saying they aren't. I could sit here and give you a list a mile long of things I have been through personally but it would do no good unless I am using it to glorify God through relating to you. There is a huge victim mentality going on in our day. We expect things from people that can give us nothing, and if they could would it really satisfy? We are grasping at the wind when we go after that one thing, that one person, that has failed us that we desperately think we need something from.
I have watched several people over a period of years grasp at the wind in their effort to blame every thing bad that has happened to them on someone else. Literally, I have seen so many pointing fingers that a certain amount of disillusionment sets in. I have seen a person never ever own up to their own past. Instead blame...blame...blame. It was everyone but them. I can't stand fake. Most of that stems from observation over my brief lifetime. You see it everywhere. People trying to act like more than they really are. Look at our national debt for example. I am talking about a pervasiveness, something that fills and spreads without, that appeals to our carnality. It is dangerous. We want to be people that are wholly filled with God. Integrity means wholeness. We are full of integrity. Being filled by the Holy Spirit is a continual thing. One baptism with many fillings. We can grieve the Holy Spirit by our sin. Remembering that the Holy Spirit is part of the Triune God, God is Holy and can not dwell with sin. Light and darkness have no fellowship. They can not co-exist. Light extinguishes the darkness always. So, we are going to be filled with something. One or the other. Just like either we are children of God or we aren't, which leaves us being a child of the devil in our unregenerate state.
Let me tell you why it is so dangerous when we live with unforgiveness. We heap sin upon sin. We either forgive and let everyone off the hook (I am not talking about a doormat mentality) and lower the bar that has been raised so high...or we become bitter.
I had the illustration of pancakes come to me a while back. A big heaping stack of pancakes. One piled upon the other and then (I don't like syrup) but sticky syrup poured all over. I REALLY just spent an hour making this so you could see the visual idea (CLICK TO ENLARGE). I hope my handwriting is legible:
Can I just say that most of what is written here I have learned from experience. We have to own up to our own sins, take our hurts to the Lord as much as we have to, and place confidence in Him. Satan will tempt you into thinking that you deserve better than the lot that has been dealt. He wants you to buy into all of the health, wealth, and prosperity teaching and trick you into all manner of sin. he will bring people along that will try to dress your wounds as though they are not serious, when we in fact have some serious gaping wounds that we need the Lord to bind up. PLEASE listen to me! Take your hurts and disappointments and find the sufficiency that only comes from Christ! He is the only one that will never grow tired or weary. He will not reject you in your brokenness. If your husband is not the husband you think he should be (not talking about abuse and etc) find that the LORD is YOUR husband. If friends have let you down go to Him and know the friend that sticks closer than a brother. If your mom and dad were never real parents to you, see that even if your father and mother forsake you...the Lord will NEVER leave you or forsake you. If you have suffered great loss, run to the one who can restore your life and make the second half better than the first. If you have blown it and traded your inheritance for a bowl of stew like Esau, start replacing lies with truth, stand to your feet and believe God for the rest of your days. Dying to ourselves will bring our richest gain. Nothing that the enemy offers is for your good. Nothing! His word works. Drink deep of the Water of Life. Walk in the Light following Him...there is nothing dark about Him, nothing even shady. Take it from me.
Instead of the woe is me attitude, let us run to the throne room and find grace and mercy in time of need. When we gaze upon the beauty of the Lord, and seek Him in His temple, where He is enthroned between the cheribum with ten thousands upon ten thousands of angels...we will cry with Isaiah: (Isaiah 6:5) "Woe to me!" I cried. "I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty."
We all sin and fall short of the glory of God. We are all unclean before a Holy God. Yet inspite of my own sins the Cross made a way for me and you to be made right with God. He never shames us. He is the rebuilder of the ancient ruins. Ruins in our own life. Bringing beauty for ashes...the things that have burned down around us that maybe we even caused. Instead of sitting in the ashes, smelling like smoke, and dressing ourself with soot let us take the garment of praise and believe that God still has a plan for you and me. As long as we have breath.