Because I had said this would be an open journal of my personal journey with the Lord…..and we all have issues or circumstances we are dealing with in life…….
In the fourth grade I had a group of girlfriends and there was one who wanted to be the leader and control who could be a part of the group and who couldn’t. She decided this by making rules or conditions for the other girls to perform to stay in the group. One day she decided everyone had to eat all of their school lunch to be able to stay in the group of friends. It just so happens this day we had corn dogs and my hot dog inside was green. I didn’t want to lose my friends so I ate all of my lunch even though I knew better. Later that night, yep you guessed it, I threw up. My mom asked me what I ate for lunch. I told her what happened and she asked me if someone told me to jump of a bridge would I do it…it made me think. The next day I told the leader I am done with her games and I don’t need to be part of her group anymore because that isn’t real friendship. Of course the group was not allowed to talk to me after I left the group. Yet as the days went by, all the other girls, one by one, left the “group” (they also were done with being told what to do or not to do) and she had no more group to lead. She was pretty mad….but I was done eating bad corn dogs and throwing up for anyone. 😉
What is so interesting is we think people grow up and stop playing these types of control games but some people still continue to even in the church.
The other night I came home from an event and realized I am still dealing with this strange unresolved issue that causes me to fear going places. The best way I have been able to find to describe how I feel is likened to what I think a leper might have felt coming into town. It is like I wait to hear unclean, unclean shouted at me. Not in words but in actions by….. Christians. These aren’t unbelievers but those that claim they know Christ. I know the way these people are treating me isn’t about me but really about them, their own fear. Yet, still their choices and actions have had an impact on both me and my family. Yes I can hear, in their actions, the shouts unclean, unclean, literally not wanting us to touch them much less even just say hi or wave. I had told someone I had never experienced this before and remembered my corn dog story above. So, I ask…..’now what Father???’.
The leper was completely, fully healed by Jesus. The leper received shalom from Jesus. Like the leper Jesus is constantly healing me in this process. He has been faithful through and in this process. He has shown me when I am weak He is strong. Paul had made a statement in 2 Corinthians 12,’I have this thorn in my side’ and God said, ‘My grace is sufficient’. I really have come to understand Paul’s statement. I have this thorn in my side or as I like to say these people are being a pain in my rear…and the Lord whispers back to me,
“My grace is sufficient”….meaning Him in me, all Jesus did is enough to carry and heal me. This is the truth that shouts louder then the unclean that others are shouting. This truth, His grace, is not like chaff-the word unclean-which is blown away by the wind. The reality of what Jesus did on the Cross and His sending His Holy Spirit to dwell in me, this truth, stands firm, and resounds within me. I believe we all have issues or things we are facing or dealing with. No one is immune to life happenings or circumstances. As believers, I fully recommend pondering, meditating on the fact that the Most High God, Creator of Heaven and earth has chosen a way to come and dwell inside us. This thought, this truth doesn’t minimize my issue but what it does do is gives me the ability to know that I am never alone, He is there with me through this, He gives me the strength and ability to walk it out, I can rely on Him and His help. I stand in Him and Him in me and together all things are possible. I hear the Lion of Judah roar–Take heart I have overcome the world. I remember Who lives in me and Whose I am. I feel His love wrap around me and reside in me while His Shalom rests in me and I remember who I am in Him and then my heart rests once again in His truth. Once again He heals His beloved.