I have moments when I feel as though I am right where God wants me to be exactly when He wanted me to be there... but then something happens and I feel like I have missed it. Once again, I found myself there yesterday.
I can have complete peace with a decision. I can even be certain that the Holy Spirit specifically confirmed that decision with several "lightbulb" moments before and after it was made. Then all it takes is a few random comments in succession that sends a wave of doubt and panic over me.
Why is that?
There is nothing that scares me more than NOT being in the center of God's will. You see that is where I desire to be no matter the cost to myself, I just want to be IN His will. I want to be following closely behind that pillar of cloud by day and that pillar of fire by night. I want to be camped out as close to the mountain as my sinful flesh will allow me to be, so the thought of standing stranded in the wilderness makes me nauseous with nervous emotions.
What I realized this morning is that Satan knows that full well.
I sit here now and shake my head, knowing that his arrows once again hit there mark. He got me again with the same words that worked on Eve, "Indeed has God said..." He set his trap and I walked right into it. Hook, line, and sinker. He got me. In his getting me he not only caused me to doubt what I knew I had heard from my God but he led me into a state of grumbling and complaining about the service and sincerity of others. If you were here beside me you would see my chest rise with my deep breathe of "ughhhh" and you would see my head shaking with the "how did I let that happen again" motion.
I am a firm believer that when God teaches us a lesson, when He reveals more of Himself to us, when we seek Him, He tests us so that we can see if we got it. For some reason I seem to remember things better when I get them wrong the first time around...
You see yesterday I spent the morning taking notes on waiting on God. I spent the morning learning about how I am to rest in God, in His sovereignty. I took notes thinking how I knew some people who really needed to hear this stuff. Then God shows me, yeh, you Nicole is the "some people" who really needs to hear this stuff.
This is probably one of the hardest parts for me in my Christian walk of faith. Sin, not so much. Sin is clearly laid out in Scripture. Satan really cannot get me too far with sins of the flesh. God has them clearly laid out and defined and it doesn't take long for my spirit to feel the ick of sin when I have stepped off in it. Now this does not mean that I don't step in it, because I do. However I am a firm believer that if you are continuously being washed in the Word when you step in sin it's just like stepping in dog poop. You can't help but notice the smell.
However, the James 4:17 sin, "Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.",yes, this one, this sin, it scares me. You see I don't want to be David out on the rooftop when I was supposed to be out on the battlefield. I want to be where I am supposed to be when I am supposed to be there. (At this point my husband is shaking his head because he knows I am always late where ever I go)
I want to follow God. I don't want to run up ahead and ask God to bless my mess. I don't want to name it and claim it. I want God to claim it and then give it, according to His good pleasure, not mine.
So after falling prey once again to the devil's schemes. I am thankful for forgiveness. I am thankful for lessons learned that will most likely have to be learned again sometime in the future. I am queen of the refresher courses.
In part of my yesterday morning study time Kay Arthur shared a quote by J. Vernon McGhee, "There is no shortcut to success in the Christian life." The simple reality is we don't jump from salvation to spiritual maturity in a weekend conference or a six week Bible study. It is a lifetime of pursuing God and His Word. It's persevering through mistakes and it's holding on during those times that God has left us alone to test us (2 Chronicles 33:31). It's remembering that Jesus said that He is with me. It's remembering that He will accomplish what He started in me. It's remembering that if I have been faithful to be devoted to prayer and I know that I have brought every decision to be made to my God to seek His will, then I have to wait on Him and rest in Him.
Kay Arthur shared that "rest is taking God at His word and living accordingly" and she shared that in order for us to be able to wait on God we must (1) know who God is and know His ways, (2) understand the future according to Scripture, and (3) seek His counsel in the Word, in prayer, and through other believers that He places in our lives.
So in those moments that the enemy hits his target and makes me feel as though I have blown it, as though I have completely missed the mark, as though I am stranded in the wilderness without my Pillar, I must return to seek my God and remember to rest in Him.
Funny isn't it, how what the enemy intended for evil always turns out for good for those who love God. You see he meant to make me feel disconnected and separated from my God, but all He did was send me running for dear life back into the safety of His arms.