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Posts Tagged ‘old testament’

I have these little things called self-sufficiency and independence that seem to be the thorns in my side. I think I popped out of the womb as “Miss Independent.”

As far back as I can remember I have always fought to do my own thing. I thought I could teach myself how to ride a bike, climb trees, play sports, tie my shoes, and pretty much anything my older brother was doing.

I am an independent.

There is also a side of me that has learned how to be very self-sufficient as well. When I was a junior in high school, my family experienced a huge change through the confessed affair of my father. That event was a catalyst for this independent girl to shift right into complete self-sufficiency. I also carry around the apple that fell from the tree of strong and stubborn from my mom as well.

As everyone in my family was trying to emotionally put life back together, the survival skill of self-sufficiency took deeper roots in me.

I have carried around the messages that life has been up to me, and that I am responsible for what happens. There is some level of truth that. However, this does not leave a lot of room for surrender.

At some point we all battle with playing the role of being our own kings. We decide that we can do it better than God and manage whatever we are facing; and onto the throne we go.

We can look back in the Old Testament and see that for centuries the demands on and for a king have always failed. It is no mystery why I have experienced failure in my life every time I take on the throne.

Pain is the only result when stepping outside of what only He can do.

Surrender is something that is so hard for me. It goes against every grain of independence. I hate feeling out of control, and choosing to surrender immediately brings on that feeling. My heart constantly feels the tension of playing Tug-Of-War with God.

I have spent my whole life as an independent. I don’t know how to make the shift from independence to dependence on God. I know it’s a choice – a choice that takes trust and risk. I am working on choosing to find contentment in feeling out of control. I am definitely tired of experiencing failure.

Surrendering is a hard choice to make, but is worth it in the long run.

In what ways do you struggle with surrendering?

What are you holding on to that you might need to surrender?

 

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Often times when I read the Old Testament, I read under the pretense that God interacted with his people in a very direct way. God seemed to reveal himself in more a direct way to his appointed leaders. Daniel rocked my view of this misconception.

There is a chapter in Daniel that if you read through it too fast, you might miss this line. The words I am hooked on are, “In the first year of Darius son of Ahasuerus (a Mede by descent), who was made ruler over the Babylonian kingdom- 2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the Scriptures, according to the word of the LORD given to Jeremiah the prophet.”

Daniel was spending time with God by reading the scriptures. He wasn’t experiencing God through a burning bush, on a mountain, in a consuming fire, or even hearing his voice in a whisper. Daniel was reading scripture.

Daniel had a very intimate relationship with God. He always responded to God in a way that was so real as well as with a solid belief that God was very present with him.

While Daniel was reading Jeremiah, he realized that the people of God were living life in the same manner in his day as they were in Jeremiah’s. It is at this point where I can picture Daniel putting his book down and the tempo of the mood changing. Daniel stops reading and “turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes.” Daniel is deeply burdened by the state of the hearts that seem to be the same around him, seventy years later.

I want to be a person of deep conviction. I desire to be so moved by what I read in the Bible that it makes me respond, on my knees, to the Lord. I want to know God so intimately that I take all my thoughts, firstfruits, doubts, struggles, and burdens to him.

Daniel fostered that intimacy with the Lord by reading the words of scripture. That gives me hope and momentum to seek the same intimacy by reading his words as well.

I desire such intimacy with the Lord that my thoughts and burdened heart turn immediately towards him.

Are you burdened by what you read in the Bible?

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