December 4, 2010

Wanting to Leave it All Behind

I didn't sleep well last night, in fact, I tossed and turned and I had angry dreams the entire time.  I feel so wasted today, and it is only 6:00 a.m.!  UGH!  I am sitting here blogging, but I don't want to be here.  I really don't want to be here at all.  I don't want to stay in my home, I don't want to live in Phoenix, and I don't want to deal with what is going on within my family (issues) right now.  I want to run away, take a break, go someplace else and finally find some peace and quiet.  I know, running away is never the answer, but I feel like it is what I want to do.  I am like a caged animal, just pacing back and forth, waiting for the cell door to open.  I don't know how I got trapped again -- I was free, I was out there walking and enjoying my life just a short while ago.  My circumstances have changed, my environment has turned dark, and I am feeling the pangs of being hardpressed on all sides.  It is uncomfortable, and I want out.

I know this is of my own doing, I know that I have done this to myself.  Firstly, it is my fault for getting embroiled in a situation that really was neither "here nor there," so to speak.  It was a null issue, something destined to rise and fall, and I got swept along with the wave.  I didn't intend to get caught up in it, but I did, and now I am swimming furiously to get myself back to shore.  I don't like this feeling, these feelings, and I want them to stop.

Secondly, I realize that the last time I was in this spot, well a similar spot, I was at fault because I chose to run away instead of accepting my own limitations on the matter.  For example, when my marriage was in crisis (that point when I thought I just cannot take one more day), my thoughts ran towards running away from my DH.  I know, childish thoughts, but I had them, and for a time, the thought of going someplace new seemed like the perfect solution to me.  I would just "leave the past behind."  The problem with that attitude is that in truth the past never really gets left behind, you just pack it up and take it with you.  Your past is always a part of who you are so you just move it along, never really dealing with issues and unresolved tension.  You simply put it into a drawer, and decide not to take it out -- until some unforseen situation or circumstance requires that you go and get it.  I've been there and done that one too many times.  I know better, yet I still think running away and hiding from my past is a good option whenever I get super stressed or oppressed.

Twice now I have said to the Lord, "I want to move away from my husband's family."  Even though I know the Lord planned on moving me to another city, it was not to be for this reason.  I was to move to another city for His work, so He could establish me and settle me there.  The city was of His choosing, the provision for the move was of His hand.  I was not going there to get away, to leave my past behind, or hide from the unpleasantness of my present circumstance.  Yet, in my distress, I chose to use His choice of moving as motivation and justification for the turmoil I am in at the moment.  In my mind, the thought said, "well, God is moving you there ANYWAY, so what is the big deal?"  I think to me it was just common sense, but to the Lord, it was using His provision for the wrong reason, with the wrong intent and wrong motivation.

The Lord is all about motivation and intent.  The Word tells us that God searches our hearts (Romans 8:27; Ps. 139:23; and Ps. 44:21) and that He knows our minds.  The Lord knows us and He knows when our heart and our mind is not pure, is not motivated with the proper intent.  He knows our attitudes as well, and He spots inconsistency quickly.  God tests our hearts, and He tests us to prove us -- to see if we are true.  In short, it is very difficult (nary impossible) to pull anything over on the Lord.  We can try Him, but we will always find Him true.

My heart was wrong, my mind was off point, and I was no longer seeing His provision for what it was, but instead I was looking at it only as a form of escape.  God quickly shut me down, turned me around, and said "No can do."  He closed the door on moving away.  He moved me out of that line, and put me on another path, a path that would keep me here in Phoenix for a time.  I didn't realize what was happening until this morning when I prayed and said these words:  "Lord, I want to move away.  I want to go someplace far from all this mess."  As soon as the words popped out of my mouth, I understood what I had done, what I was doing.  The Holy Spirit gently corrected me (as in convicted me), and I confessed my sin to the Lord.  I was trying to use His provision for my own will, which is a no-no with the Lord.  The Lord provides, the Lord guides, and the Lord determines our outcome.  It is always about Him, and never directly about us.  We benefit, of course; we prosper thanks to His Mighty and Marvelous hand, but we never are the REASON or FOCUS of His movement in our life.  He moves in us and through us for His Glory (Judges 7:1-7 and Ps. 24:9-10).  It is all about His Glory, about Him receiving the Praise and the Worship due His Name.  We are participants in His movement, in His action; but we are never the focus.  It seems like we are, it seems like God does things for us, it seems like we are the reason He is involved in our world; afterall, He came to save us, and it is His plan to redeem mankind.  Our thinking is man-centered whereas God's thinking is always God-centered.  It is all about Him, always all about Him.

As I confessed my faulty reasoning to the Lord, I felt this overwhelming sense of dread, like I was let loose into the stormy sea.  I don't want to be here, I don't want to be surrounded by these turbulent waters.  Why, Lord, why have you cast me off?

Dear Lord,

I have done this very thing on more than one occassion.  I have taken your gift, and then turned it into something for which it was not designed.  I apologize for my foolishness, and for my arrogance.  I am in error.  I ask you now to forgive my haughty heart, and my willful mind.  I want your will to be done in my life.  I want your way, always your way.  I don't want to go anywhere without a clean slate (a clean conscience), and a pure heart motivated towards bringing you Glory and Praise.  I ask now to be restored to your plan, to be rescued from the storms and tempest that surrounds me, and I ask for your Grace so that I can bear up and handle the difficult days ahead of me.  In Jesus' Name I ask this, Amen.

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