TGIM #2: Let There Be Light

“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.”

– Lena Horne

I get tired.

But God.

I get tired of being the bigger person…holding my tongue when I all I want to do is lash out…turning the other cheek when I’d rather just nail that right hook the way I know I can.

But God is settling me. Garbage in, garbage out? Not on my watch. I will not be a vehicle for anger, pain and bitterness. The buck stops with me. That’s the agreement I have with Him. Where death is thrown at me, His Spirit transforms those dry bones to life and I get to birth life through my words and my actions.

I get tired of assumptions heaped on me. Like others are somehow entitled to not be or do their best because being gracious somehow comes naturally to me.

But God has given me all the reasons to be grateful for this grace which really does come supernaturally to me, freely given. It takes Jesus to live like Jesus. To produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit daily.

I get tired of the automatic judgment passed on my being a Christian – that I must be a judgmental holier-than-thou type. Pot meet kettle?

But God shows me beyond the judgment in their hearts to the hurts they’ve experienced. Broken people can hardly be expected to speak wholeness, something which they don’t have. Neither can broken people be healed by throwing their brokenness back at them.

I get tired of the jokes. The same tired stale jokes about Jesus, faith and Christianity.

But God shows me how those jokes are often meant to be nothing more than an ice breaker. Most people I meet have only experienced a stuffy boring Christianity where people have to earn their love and acceptance. So meeting and interacting with me tends to be a culture shock to a different kind of Christianity.

I get tired of being the scapegoat for every wrong thing any Christian does.

But God has taught me that hurt often robs people of reason. While I am not personally responsible for their hurt, it doesn’t mean I can’t listen with understanding. It doesn’t mean that I can’t show them what real Christianity looks like by being loving and kind.

I get tired of the expectation of perfection by those not even willing to try. The scrutiny in the waiting…the waiting for me to make one mistake that can be used to drag me off a high-horse I’m supposedly on…one that I know nothing of. Yet, here I am worrying that something I say or do, something I don’t say or don’t do, is going to be the reason someone decides not to give God a chance.

But God assures me that He has called me to excellence not perfection. My mistakes and shortcomings are already factored into His plan for each day of my life. He’s ridding me of the final dredges of being a perfectionist and helping me embrace my best…whatever it looks like today, here, now.

I get tired of the subjective Scripture quoting. Lord, help me if one more person gleefully informs me that Jesus turned water into wine in response to my non-imbimbing ways.

But God reminds me that those Scriptures quoted, even out of context, are evidence of someone somewhere who poured into them. And it’s easier to divert the course of a river that already exists than to get a river going where none exists.

I get tired of loving the difficult ones…choosing to love when all I feel is frustration and pain and disappointment.

But God gently whispers that the difficult ones are the ones who’ve never really known love…and that’s why they don’t know how to respond to it. They’re the ones who need it even more than the rest.

I get tired of loving the ones who step on me to get a reaction out of me…who hurt me…again…and again…and again.

But God shows me the power of a love that has been tried and tested and proven to be true. The power of pushing back fear-driven speech and actions with love-driven speech and actions.

I get tired of being the giver whose giving is easily taken for granted and not appreciated or reciprocated.

But God constantly restores and refreshes the joy in my giving. The full measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over always comes back to me. He is my endless Source of everything I need and everything He wants to give them through me.

I get tired of pretending that I don’t really know what’s going on in someone’s heart and mind. Between the discernment that comes with the Holy Spirit, the gift of the prophetic and being called to the office of the prophet, at any given moment I know far too much.

But God is holding my heart ever so tenderly through this crazy journey of the prophetic. In showing me the hearts of others, in showing me what He sees, He enables me to love them unconditionally like He does. He helps me pray with accuracy over their lives.

When did being Christian become equivalent to not having thoughts or feelings…not being human? The reality of these places we are called to  – these 7 nations – is that they will take everything we have and demand even more. Pretending to be ok and unaffected by what we experience is not the Christian thing to do. Trying to fake it until we make it just speeds up a downward spiral into dejection and frustration.

Before we can speak of light, we must first acknowledge the darkness that surrounds us…the darkness that sometimes creeps within us.

I’m no Super Saint. There’s no such thing. I’m just a woman who dares to believe that God really is who He says He is. A woman who even with all her faith, often gets weary of the shambles this world is in.

I don’t live for Christ because it somehow comes more easily for me than the next person. I, too, have my Gethsemane days when I’m caught between bargaining and begging for another way…any other way.

But God is teaching me to run to Him not away from Him when I’m burdened by the cares of this world. His arms are wide open for me when I’m having a bad day, dealing with a difficult person or situation. He’s right there encouraging me to get back up again when I trip over my humanity.

We were always meant to walk this journey of life with the Holy Spirit. But we can’t do that if we’re not honest with Him…and ourselves…about how we feel and what we think.

Let there be light in the dark places of our hearts.

Where we have experienced hurt, let there be healing.

Where we have been wronged, let there be the grace of forgiveness and peace.

Where we have been shamed, let there be Love that covers us and lifts our heads.

Where we have not been a proper representation of Jesus, let there be a renewal in our hearts and minds that we would give to others, what He has given to us.

Where we have been weary, let there be strength…the kind that puts ten thousand to flight.

Where we have been doubtful and unsure, let there be the gift of faith that causes us to stand on His Word.

Where we have not known, not seen, not experienced Him, let His Spirit reveal the Trinity to us in all His glory.

Let there be light.

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