If you read my blog post from last week, I Am The Greatest, then you’ll recall how I was so full of praise and awe and wonderment of God. I was praising Him for being my Redeemer, my Savior, for being the Great I Am!!! Today, I have a confession to make…within two days of that blog being posted, my song changed
From My God is Worthy to Why my family?
From My God is Holy to How can this happen to me?
From My God is Infallible to If only I were more…
And just recognizing my change in attitude, seeing how I went from praise to pity in .9 seconds, made me full of more guilt and shame and feelings of unworthiness. I quickly sunk into that deep, dark place where “whoa-is-me” resides and the songs of praise which filled my heart and soul just days before became songs of depression, despair and doom.
See when I was being strong for others, (My dad’s health had been compromised, my brother-in-law had suffered from a stroke, my friends son dropped out of school, my cousin lost his job, a troubled young lady called with thoughts of suicide, the prayer requests of the numerous people submitted via theshulamiteseries.com website, etc.), it was easy to tell them how great God is. It was easy to pray on their behalf. I was so full of “Jesus knows how much you can bear” and “This too shall pass” and “God loves you unconditionally and He can and will provide”. But when physical pain rendered me speechless and on my knees; when numerous doctor visits, pain medication and antibiotics rendered me tired and worn out; when the doctors determined that I’d need to have surgery in a few weeks; when I was experiencing my own “valley moment”, my songs of praise became songs of pity.
I’m so glad that I serve a God who is in fact, Unchangeable, Sovereign, Omnipotent, and Merciful. I’m so glad that I serve a God who sees beyond my weaknesses, my doubts, my fears and my pitifulness; loving me unconditionally despite me. Because God knows me and loves me, He gave me my momentary pity party. I’m thinking, sort of like Elijah (I Kings 18 and 19). I shared this analogy with someone near and dear to my heart; little did I know the words written would be my story.
Elijah had just had his “mountaintop experience”---He was boldly proclaiming the wondrous name of God, even got a little cocky in his boasting. “Go ahead. What you got? Can your God do this? Or how about this (I Kings 18:25-29)?” And after he witnessed God’s miraculous powers, he was full of praise. “The Lord is God!” He was on an “I serve an awesome God high”, having enough adrenaline and energy to run all the way to Jezreel (I Kings 18:41-46).
“Hallelujah, Praise the Lord! He’s Worthy!” I can hear Elijah now. And then…wait for it…bad news comes his way. Big, bad Jezebel was after him (I Kings 19:1, 2). Elijah went from praise to pity. “Why me God? I’m too tired God. I can’t with Jezebel. Take me now. Waaaaaaaa (I Kings 19:3-5)!” But God, in His infinite wisdom, instead of rebuking Elijah or granting his wish of death, gave Elijah a moment of rest, reflection and restoration (I Kings 19:5-8). And when Elijah was strong enough, God simply reminded Elijah who He was and who he, Elijah, was in Him (I Kings 19:9-18).
Call me Elijah, because that’s exactly what God is doing with me. During this time of forced rest and restoration, I’ve had nothing but time to reflect upon who God is (imagine that, me having to read and re-read my own blog post, I Am the Greatest). And not only that, but God reminded me of who I am. I am not what the world tells me or what that tape in my head plays over and over again----unworthy, a failure, sick, tired, weary, worn out, sad, angry, incapable.
God reminded me that because of the Great I Am, I am…
Chosen (I Thessalonians 1:4), Blameless (Colossians 1:22); Saved (2 Timothy 1:9), Sanctified (Hebrews 2:11), Born Again (I Peter 1:23), Forgiven (I John 2:12), Anointed (I John 2:27), Redeemed (Revelation 5:9), A Conqueror (Romans 8:37), A Temple (I Corinthians 3:16), Called (I Corinthians 7:17), Victorious (I Corinthians 15:57), I am a Child of the King (John 1:12)!
Because God is Love, He is teaching me how to love myself; not because I’m so great, but because I am His. I am a child of the King and I should walk around boldly, with confidence, secure in knowing that despite my circumstances and my feelings, God’s got me. It doesn’t matter if I’m sick, tired, or just plain sick and tired. It doesn’t matter if I tried and failed or never tried at all. It doesn’t matter if I’m on the mountaintop or in the valley. I am loved.
Do you remember when you first fell in love? Do you remember that over-the-top, my-heart-may-never-beat-again, warm-from-my-head-to-my-toes, I-can-hardly-breathe, I-get-so-weak-in-the-knees-I-can-hardly-speak, to-be-loved-to-be-loved-oh-what-a-feeling-to-be loved kind of love? Well God’s love is so much more than that. Just like Shula learned in Naked and Unashamed, God’s love is that hold-you-as-you-cry-all-night, pick-you-up-when-you-fall, walk-for-you-when-you-can’t, forgive-you-even-though-you-don’t-deserve-it, see-you-at-your-best-even-when-you’re-at-your-worst, I-will-never-ever-leave-you-nor-forsake-you kind of love.
Maybe this blog post isn’t for anyone but myself. But God is working with me and I’m praising Him again not only for Who He Is, but also because His unconditional Love has caused me to see myself not as sick, weak, tired, unfit or unworthy but as a conqueror, as victorious, as a special, loved Child of the King!
From My Heart to Yours,
PS… This video lifted my spirits; I pray that it lifts yours too!
Verse of the Week: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2Corinthians 5:17)
- Have you ever had an “in the valley” moment? If so, how might the story of Elijah help you during your next “in the valley” moment?
- What other Godly characteristics/traits can you find in the Bible that resonate with you?
- How does knowing Who God is make you more secure in who you are?