Life’s a lot to think about sometimes.
It’s too big… and in my case, there are too many days to count. The weight of it all can knock you off your feet like an ocean wave. If you don’t get up soon, you start sinking in the sand, buried by the continuous wash of debris.
The ebb and flow of my moods is exasperating. I find myself frustrated that such little things cause me to buckle and sink. I want to think I am stronger but in reality, I cannot rely on my own strength to get through this. It’s not enough.
Before Chris was deployed, if you asked me about my faith in God I would have said it was strong. I was a cradle Christian. My mama took me to church. I never knew a time in my life where I didn’t hear about Jesus. While I’m blessed to have this upbringing, it also creates a history where religion becomes something common and calm. Blue-eyed Jesus surrounded by children and lambs is what I remember from my felt-board Sunday school days. It’s a sweet image, but lacking in the passion and conviction that can be found on a Damascus Road conversion. Up until recently, my faith was never seriously challenged or put into question.
It’s one thing to say you believe in God, it’s completely another to say you know God and trust in His sovereignty. It’s easy to say all the right things and give lip service to Christianity, but when your back is against the wall; what do you know? What’s God’s honest truth?
I find it interesting in today’s culture, it’s popular to say you’re an “agnostic.” By definition this is a person who claims that they cannot have true knowledge about the existence of God (but does not deny that God might exist). It’s non-committal and non-confrontational. It’s sitting on the fence. It’s politically correct. It sounds peaceful and accepting. It’s simply saying you don’t know.
But is it that simple?!? …To not make a decision is to make a decision by default.
They say the devil is in the details. It’s a saying that usually gets thrown out in the midst of party planning. But there’s a seriousness to this idiom; it is a warning of sorts. Satan plants a seed of doubt, an “I don’t know”, that has the potential to grow into something warped and deformed. We end up debating the details until we end up with a pile of minutiae that’s useless. The devil’s plan is to confuse, frustrate and render us ineffective. He knocks you down, hoping you will lie in a lazy unconvincing heap with a question mark on your head.
I’ve never been much of a fence straddler (I married Chris Neeley … politics, religion, barbeque and mayonnaise are all appropriate topics for table conversation and open for a healthy conversion). I guess that’s why I am so frustrated about my roller coaster ride of faith. I thought I knew. What I am learning is that knowing is a process. It doesn’t happen all at once. It also isn’t an intellectual pursuit, but an emotional one. Just like any relationship, it takes time to get to know one another. Each day when I get up weary, I have to ask God to give me His supernatural strength to face whatever the next 24 hours hold. At the end of the day, I find myself praising Him for the small moments and mini miracles that have sustained me. Granted, it’s not a burning bush where God is speaking directly to me, but this experience is building something solid and durable. I’ve come to understand that God is more faithful than I will ever be, and that’s the way it should be. Life is bigger than us. We are not self-made or self-sufficient beings. God knows all about our weakness. He is present and there for us. He doesn’t expect us to be perfect or have all the answers. Instead, what God wants is for us to accept His help and trust that He knows more than we ever will.
That’s all I need to know. What about you?