Monday, April 14, 2008

Nothing Compares
What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ – the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith. I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in His sufferings, becoming like Him in His death, and so, somehow to attain to the resurrection of the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. –Paul, to the Philippians

I’m ever amazed at the Lord’s gracious patience, His relentless pursual, His tender but ravishing love. Maybe amazed isn’t the right word. I’m in awe.

The Lord has been so good to me, I will praise His Name forever.

Last night was our ninth week of small group, wait, maybe it was the 11th, we skipped a week or two, not important. We talked about the journey we’ve been on and what it means to be Abba’s Child. When we first got started we challenged ourselves to spend time with God each week – alone. No music, no Bible, no books, just me and God. Scary. But life changing.
The last two weeks have been pivotal in my walk. Purpose and passion, hope and hunger, desire has resurfaced, been renewed.

It took me nine intentional weeks to finally surrender. It is terrifying to look into the blazing eyes of the Beginning and the End, the Living One. Some people have the ability to look at you and see your soul, and it’s unnerving to stand exposed, for our bluff to be called. But even in that, they don’t know everything. Only He does. And I was afraid to stand exposed. I was afraid of His disappointment and His discipline and having to change my comfortable ways. But that isn’t what I found when I turned, finally, at His call, and accepted His outstretched hand, rested my weary head upon His chest.
I saw Love. Felt Love. Experienced Love. A Love that no word can ever come close to describing. A Love that took me without hesitation, just as I am. Wounded, broken, sinful, selfish, doubtful, mean, impatient, lustful, dead, passionless, hopeless. I didn’t have to cover my inadequacies, my blemishes. I didn’t have to heal my wounds. I just had to say “yes” and the Love of the Father washed over me and made me clean, made me whole, made me new, gave me life. Love, that takes us as we are but doesn’t let us stay in that place.

I don’t know why it took me 11 months to finally let go. Guess it just goes to show how deeply set my stubborn streak is! But in knowing that God’s way and His time line is different than mine, I just rest in knowing that I did let go. I’m thankful that God works in our lives even when we don’t recognize it. I’m thankful that it isn’t in my power that change takes place. I realize that each day will have its own struggles. Each day I will have to lay down my cross, my burdens, my pride and my will, and pick up that of my Abba’s. Sometimes I think about it and I freak out. Then I lay my head back on the Father’s chest, listening to the steady beat of His heart, and allow His love to wash over my fear and cause change.

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