Testimony

Seeking Him, First

Recently, something unexpected happened in my life.
It took me a little while to sort through the ocean of emotions but, eventually, the waves started to calm.
In the past, I’ve chosen to dwell in tidal waves for longer than I should have, not realizing it was a trap (especially difficult for Enneagram 4s like me!). But God’s will is never for us to remain in negative emotions; the enemy’s is.

The enemy wants us to doubt, stay angry, give up, seek revenge, whereas God wants us to trust Him, bless everyone, have hope, and do “nothing” (1 Peter 3:8-9, Proverbs 21:23).
Yes, our worst nightmare can happen and God just wants us to forgive those we’re angry with and let go.
As soon as possible.

Though I’ve known these truths my whole life, I don’t think I’ve ever obeyed so quickly as this last time.

What changed?
I surrendered.
Not in a drag my feet way, but in a nail that thought to the cross / lay myself at Jesus’s feet, way.

What really helped me to trust God was adopting a quiet lifestyle.
When faced with unpleasant emotions, it can be tempting to avoid them. And the world offers us endless opportunities to do so.
But, I don’t know, I guess I just wanted to heal as fast as possible and I knew that was only possible with God.
During those first few months, I believe God blessed my desire to wholly surrender by giving me an intense hunger for Him (Psalm 91:14).
I prayed and listened for longer than I ever have. I learned what it means to travail.
In my desperation, my dormant gift of tongues came back.
Instead of my usual entertainment choices, I just wanted more of God’s truth and soaked in worship songs and listened to countless Joyce Meyer podcasts.

All of God’s truth … I wanted it and I wanted it to sink in deep.

And you know what? It did!
It might sound simple, but I’ve never had the effects so quickly; maybe because I’d always dragged my feet before.
The more my head was filled with God’s truth, the more it flowed into my heart and out of my mouth (Proverbs 4:23). Also, the more I shut my mouth when I was tempted to speak about the situation.

While God wants our obedience, our healing is ultimately a result of His grace rather than our actions.
He can deliver us anytime but He has a plan. It’s something I’m still trying to understand.
For example, He gave me a word about how He wanted me to spend my time in August and, in the days afterwards, my heart lightened significantly. I still longed to spend all my time with Him but He was clearly moving me to focus on some other things.
Why didn’t He heal me sooner?
Why didn’t He delay the healing because He knew I was still loving my 24/7 intimacy with Him?
Maybe I’ll never know, but I’ve decided that don’t need to.

God knows what He’s doing.

Now my prayer is about how I can continue to honour God when my emotions are not as desperate and maintain a quiet lifestyle.

To me, a quiet lifestyle isn’t one that avoids people or too much fun. (In fact, I pray that God will deepen my relationships in the season ahead.)
It’s one that makes time to be quiet before the Lord amidst the busy-ness of everyday life … even if it’s just by taking an extended bathroom break to pray.
Taking this posture, I hope to learn how to seek God’s opinion more often.

While it’s true that He lets us make many of our own decisions, I believe He’ll speak more often if I’m listening.

When thinking over my Saturday night plans, why not see if God has anything specific that He’d like me to do?
In line for the subway, maybe God will have something to say to me if I say hello and ask.
If I’m feeling off and guess it’s because I’m watching too much Netflix, it should be a simple thing to cut it out for a period and pray.

I want a life where I live in real relationship with God and truly live out what it means to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33). Past mistakes, you won’t stop me from running to God and trying again!

Everything else I desire … I trust God knows
He’s got this, and He will reveal things in His perfect timing.

Lord, thank you for your loving kindness and endless mercy.
Please continue to teach me your ways and show me how to live a surrendered lifestyle that’s pleasing to you.

 

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