Lately I've been wallowing in self pity. By the world's standards, I have reason to wallow. My uncle lost his battle to Alzheimer's at the beginning of January, I miscarried in the middle of January, my sweet grandma passed away in February, and I surrendered a dream I had been trying to make happen in March. It had been a rough couple of months to say the least.
I feel like I tried to do my best to proclaim His glory in the midst of trials. Believe that He had better things for me. But deep down, I still believed my plan was better, that if He had let me control things, I would come up with a better plan for the last few months. Without realizing it, I had faked my trust in God so good, that even I didn't see my pride sneaking in and taking over.
I have realized lately that sometimes we think we are owed something when bad things happen. We deserve pity, comfort, time to wallow in ourselves and be sad. And it's not that those things are bad, but I was letting those things trump my belief in God and who He is. God says that He works ALL things for good (Romans 8:28). Paul says we are to rejoice ALWAYS (Philippians 4:4). God will NEVER leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6). He is God, who am I to question His plan?
As I have been reading Matt Chandler's "To Live is Christ, to Die is Gain," I have been learning so much about myself and my motivations. Thankfully, God has always known my heart and knows my motivations. He loves me, more than I love myself, and He has a plan for me. That plan may include blessings on this earth, it may not. I may include heartache and trials on this earth. But either way, He is the Lord God, creator of heaven and earth, sustainer of the world, Savior of all creation. Even when I don't understand or like what happens, I rejoice. Because the only thing that truly matters is Christ and the cross.
So I stand, realizing that I am too stuck in this world. I care too much what others think of me. I hide my love of Jesus sometimes for fear of being labeled a "Jesus Freak". I sometimes pride myself on my quiet times or my desire to serve others without realizing that my motivations are self-centered. I trust my own abilities over God's. I try to help others, control others, because I believe I know a better way or what's best. And it has all caught up to me. It has all come crashing down to one truth. I am nothing. I am a sinner whose best efforts at being righteous are all junk. I am not wise or good or loving or kind. But if I let Him, I am covered in Jesus' blood. And then I am righteous in Christ, loving because He loved, pure and holy and blameless and a sister to the Savior of the world.
So I start over, every morning, deciding who I am. I have to choose Christ. I have to choose to let go of my control, my plan, my desire to be "god". I have to fight the innate pride in my that wants to do it all myself, put myself up on high and save the world. I have to choose to be joyful that I have a creator, sustainer, savior, redeemer, and God on high who is awaiting my arrival in eternity. Even when I've already chosen this path yesterday and the day before, and battled my innermost desires to be selfish and worldly, I have to chose again and battle again. Because it's worth it. He is worth it. He ALONE is worth it.
So I pray that I stand taller in Christ. That I let go of myself and desire more of Him. That I would be joyful to be a Jesus Freak because it means that I know I am not at home here on this earth. I pray that love would be my biggest gift and that I would always look at the world through the lens of Jesus and his cross.