I recently returned home from a mission trip to Door of Faith Orphanage in Mexico, and it was in the weeks leading up to my departure that I truly worked through giving God my whole heart for the first time. Though prior to this trip I believed I had given Him my heart in its entirety, I have since discovered that the piece of it held by my seven year old son was still under lock and key and not even God had been invited in. For all my confessions of a heart fully surrendered to the Lord, it turns out I had surrendered only the part that involved me as a stand alone woman. I stood at the foot of the cross entirely alone with my son held back from God by my own arm. I dared not surrender his life and well being into God's hands, but instead kept him tucked away into the facade of my own personal control in this life. God has now shown me, however, that I've never been less in control of not only my own life, but also that of my son's and every other loved one to whom I'm emotionally connected. I can no more control the future of my child than I can the stars of the universe and to think otherwise is not only grossly self-deceptive, but also extremely foolish and prideful. How dare I assume the position of God Almighty as my son's ultimate protector, and yet I've done it determinedly and faithfully every day for as long as I can recall. Bear in mind that I'm not dismissing my authority as his parental protector; I'm referring specifically to the protection that can come only from above, and it wasn't until my departure for another country that I fully surrendered authority and control and gave the Lord my whole heart - I gave Him my son.
Sunday, May 13, 2012
As my husband roared with laughter, I turned to look at him in genuine shock. "What? Why are you laughing?" I asked in puzzlement. "You just said you needed a weekend retreat! Why do you think you need a weekend retreat?" he asked, still laughing. "Well, because I do," I replied back matter-of-factly as I dramatically threw myself down on the bed. With my face buried in pillows, I tried to explain in the most theatrical tone I could muster. "I'm confused," I whined, voice muffled by the pillows cradling my face. "About what!?" he asked as he unsuccessfully tried to contain his laughter. "Stop laughing. I really need to have a weekend retreat out in nature where I can just pray and ponder and figure everything out" I said. "What do you need to figure out!?" he asked in bewilderment as he leaned down to patronizingly caress my hair. Ordinarily I would have slapped his hand away and told him to stop the condescension, but I was so entrenched in my own pity party, I couldn't even find the strength to make him stop. "Everything!" I cried as I threw my arms out in exasperation, knocking pillows off the bed in the process. "God is just not making things clear enough," I said, and to which Sam replied, "isn't He though?" "Ooohh....clever response," I thought to myself, and although I was tempted to give his answer consideration, I decided instead to continue building my case. "No, Sam, He's not. If He would just come right down here and tell me what to do, I would do it, but He keeps changing things up on me and throwing weird things like my current job into the mix. Moreover, I'm not making money doing what I love and what I know He has called me to do, so how can I put my entire self into the ministry when 45 hours a week I'm working somewhere else! It just doesn't make sense and God just isn't giving me direction!" and with that I exited my own stage and waited expectantly on him to agree...or applaud...or request an encore. He didn't. Instead, he said what my heart already knew - "until you embrace where you are and learn to love it and work at it as God would have you do then you're never going to find your place because it will always be the next better thing around the corner. Your place is right here, right now."