When the Lord works in your life to refine you, do you fight, flee or listen?
I am a cheerful, even-tempered person, for the most part, but this evening I found myself weeping.
God is speaking to me about some issues of self-control and discipline in my life. I can feel Him pruning away the dry, shriveled branches.
It hurts. Stings. Wrenches.
Even though I know the end result is fresh growth and new blossoms, I still find myself clinging to those withered, unattractive twigs.
Rachel and I enjoyed the sunshine this afternoon.
Today a friend listened to me share my struggles in the areas of finances, homeschooling and healthy food/exercise habits. Just as I was asking for prayer to be faithful, she interrupted to point out that all of those battles lead back to a lack of self-control.
“You can’t treat the symptoms when there is an underlying, root cause that needs addressing,” she said and from there we began a quick Biblical word study on the topics of “self-discipline” and “self-control.”
It wasn’t pleasant. My heart was hurt as I looked in the face of some of my shortcomings and thought about my many failures. I was weary at the thought of all the effort involved in CHANGING a core weakness.
At the end of our visit, my friend gently touched her Bible and said she would be earnestly praying for me from Colossians 1.
“…and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience…” Colossians 1:9-11
Through the fire, amidst the tears, never leaving me, the Lord is there by my side. When I am weak, I can lean on Him. In my ugliness and failure, His love is still true and constant.