Thank You For This Classroom

Thank You for this classroom; for all the lessons learned.

For the aching and the breaking; for the treasures I haven’t earned
For the changes which have taken place; for the sweetness of You.
For the rough and rugged rocks; for the pain that I’ve gone through.
Nowhere can I learn what is so very, very hard.
What’s taught by every molding, tearing shard.

When we’re weak, amongst what hurts,
That’s when we love You more.
Only then can we see Your face
When we’re weak and when we’re poor.
Stand by me Jesus, through it all, as I know You’ll always be.
Sometimes we have to be blind before we can truly see.
~
 “Why are you doing this?”

  That seemed to be my question for God.  Why would He not answer my call?  Why wasn’t He healing me?  His word said He would be faithful.  His word promises that He will give good things to the faithful and the upright.  Am I not upright enough?

   Stuck in bed from throwing up for the tenth week in a row, I was unsure where God was in this.  My body was sick for some reason, but none of the doctors knew what it was.  Am I to live the rest of my life like this?  I knew, deep down, that that wasn’t true, but thoughts like this tend to crowd your mind when you are struggling with your health, no matter how small the issue is.


  Eventually God did guide me to a doctor that found out I had gluten and dairy intolerance, but little did I know that these same thoughts I had when I was fourteen would go through my mind again, nearly seven years later.


   Once again stuck in bed from an unknown illness.  Panic attacks plagued me every time I went somewhere and all the doctors shrugged their shoulders and said, “Oh, it’s all in your head.  Take these pills…” when I knew it was something much deeper than just that.  Was I really going crazy?  Was it all in my head?


  All I could do was lay in bed and think. 

  My instruments lay around me, reminding me of my lack of energy to play them and the games on my Nook seemed empty and old.  There was nothing to do but think.

  My thoughts went back to my past and my earlier bought with health problems.   I remembered the thoughts and the lies that had gone through my head and were going through my head once more. 

“Why are you doing this?”


   “If this is all in my head, then our relationship must have changed for the worst, right?”  I knew God was faithful.  I knew He had a plan for me.  I knew all the right answers, but none of them gave me the answer I needed.

  The days and months passed.  Over and over I asked God the same questions.  I read His word and prayed harder, but no answer came.  At least not the one I wanted.


  I can’t say it happened over night, but gradually, I began to see a change within my heart.  I learned patience and humility without even realizing it.  My heart began to seek God with all the strength I could muster and my soul at last began to be filled.  Even in the emptiness of these questions, I found my answer.

God was training me for Himself.

  Yes, hardships are confusing.  In the midst of them, we tend to be blind to the lessons we are learning.  But when I let go of my own ambitions and truly submitted to God, I saw that this place I am in isn’t a box or a cell, but a classroom.  A classroom that was teaching me what I desperately needed to learn.

  Strangely enough, when I stopped fighting and started submitting to Gods plan, I learned to love Him more.  Yes, I was angry at first and scared, but slowly Jesus showed me that He was still good and that He was faithful, in the midst of our suffering.  In fact He is even more satisfying when we are unsatisfied with this world.


  This classroom was not foreign to me.  I was in the same classroom back when I was fourteen and I learned how to love Jesus and practice His presence through that time.  This time around, I learned to depend on Him more and continue to learn more how to trust Him with the tiniest of things in my life.  Trusting that He knows what’s best for me, even if that means dealing with these health issues forever.

  This doesn’t mean my questions were bad or that they were never going to be answered.  God did heal me back when I was fourteen and I am recovering from this recent illness too.  However, this time around, I am not as impatient.  I already see the fruit that God has grown within me and also I see that He isn’t finished. I have a lot to learn, but everyday I trust that Jesus, my Beloved, will teach me in His own timing.  

So I thank you for this classroom, Lord… 

…because sometimes we have to be blind before we can truly see.

 What are your thoughts?  Have you experienced a time like this or are you still struggling with your questions?  I would love to hear from you and try to help in anyway I can with those questions.  Please comment below your thoughts or questions.   I respond to every comment.

1st Week of Song of Songs Study: Intro.

Every Saturday, I will be posting a section from a book I have written.  It is a study on Song of Songs or Song of Solomon.  In order to get your feet wet, I have included this intro to the book itself.  Be sure to check my blog every Saturday for the newest posts.

 Photo from http://pixabay.com, words added.

Or….
            “Song of songs, the most slandered, unread, tabooed, misunderstood book in the bible”.   
  The latter seems more fitting when it comes to it’s popularity.  This is a book that most people read once in their lives and then ignore it.  Mostly because of some stumbling blocks that hinder them from seeing it’s true beauty:
Block #1: Many people think that this book is scandalous and sexual 
  I admit, it does have those parts, but the vast majority of it is very relational.
 

Block #2: This book was written by Solomon.
  The fact that it was written by Solomon makes it no less a part of Gods Word and (despite it’s fanciful way of writing), it should be respected just as any other book in the Bible.
  Just as the Psalms were written by many authors, this too has an author.   Its construction greatly resembles the many opera’s that our modern composers have written and it has a similar feel as the Psalms.


Block #3: this book is only for married people or people who are dating. 
  Many have even said that you should not read Song of Songs if you are single.  I say this is wrong!  Every book in the Bible has something to offer in every part of your life and that is still the same in this book, whether you are single or not single.

  Then what is this book about?  Like I said before it is about a relationship.  Not just a relationship between husband and wife, nor just the relationship between a man and a woman, but about the relationship between God and His bride.

  “Who is this bride?”  asks all, “Is it the church?”   Indeed, God does say that his church is his bride, but what is the church made of?  All of God’s people; both men and women.  This book is about the relationship between God and His people.  

  However, I’d like to make a subtle flip, this book is also about the relationship between His people and God.  Notice the difference?  It’s a subtle change, but an essential one. God cares, not only about reaching out to you, but creating in you a desire to reach out to Him.  


  Michelangelo’s picture of God reaching out to Adam is a bit one sided if you don’t see that Adam is reaching back.  This has been the case ever sense the beginning of time, but God is the one Who reaches first to create this relationship not man.  Christ reached first when He died on the cross for our sins and God is the one Who creates in you a desire to reach for Him. 

 Warning!!  Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that God needed something from us when He reached for us.  There are two different types of reaching in this relationship:

1st God’s:  He reaches for us not in a needy way, but in a loving way. 
  God does not need anything from us, He is perfectly whole without us, but He still reaches for us, and the reason for that is love. He loves His people so much that He reached first.  It’s amazing to think that our Lord would do that and continues to do that for us.  This has been His intent ever since we fell.

2nd Us: We reach out of our need, but through that need, He grows a love to need Him. 

  We need God and require His help at all times, but God does not want us to reach for Him just because we need His help.  He wants us to love reaching for Him.  Indeed, we reach out of our need, but it is more of a trusting need.  It’s a spread your hands wide before Him, loving need.
         
  This book is a beautiful book because it exhibits this relationship vividly, which is why it so sad that many avoid it.

 God put this book here to show us how passionately and tenderly He loves us.

   I hope that through these writings you will see a few of the many facets of Song of songs that you have never seen before.  I say a few because I do not know everything and do not claim to know everything that this book holds.  These writings are only what God has brought forth to my mind to see.

  My desire is to open the door of your heart to meditating on Song of Songs.  So many of us read so quickly through Gods word that we never give it time to sink.  It takes a great deal of thought and prayer to study the bible.   Slow down and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the truths of Gods word.
           
   If I were to pick one of my favorite books of the Bible, I would pick this one.  God has used this book to open my eyes to our relationship and His character, and I pray that it will do the same for you.

  I look forward to going through Song of Songs with you.  If you have any questions or thoughts, please write them in the comments below.  I respond to every comment.  Also, be sure to check back next Saturday for a new post on Song of Songs! God bless

 

 Want to read more? Click here! (Enter the Characters and Song of Songs 1:2)

Quenching The Cry

As I have gone through life, I have heard a cry.  A cry of deep desire and emptiness, longing to be filled.  This cry is in every woman’s heart.  It is the desire to be loved intimately.

Standing in the corner of a party, looking at a man that is so cute, yet knowing that he would never be interested in you… there’s the cry.

Living alone with only a pet or with just the TV to keep you company after a long day… there’s the cry.

This cry is always searching for relief.  We think, “If I just get a boyfriend,” or “If this guys only would like me,” or “When I get married, then I will be happy.”
When I was fourteen, I went through a time of depression.  I was physically unwell and my life felt meaningless.  I didn’t have many friends and the friends I did have didn’t fill the hole that cried out within me.  It was a cry for a deep, intimate relationship.  A desire to be held, to be treasured, and loved passionately.  I knew I needed something because I felt incomplete.
My soul was rubbed raw.
Now, many of you are expecting a speech on how wonderful it is to being single and that we should embrace it.  Well, I am going to tell it to you straight:
That’s not true.
When I tried to be happy in just being single, I found myself more miserable because I still had that cry within my heart.
 The history of the cry:
“Yet your desire and craving will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” ~ Genesis 3:16b
Our curse is to feel incomplete without a husband… yet does that mean only a husband can satisfy this cry.  No, it just means we have an inner desire to be loved.  Even after people get married, or get a boyfriend, or be liked by a boy, it still doesn’t satisfy this cry completely.  Why do you think so many marriages and relationships break up?  Because somebody doesn’t feel satisfied.
Then how do we satisfy this cry?
Going back to my own story, I was given a book called Practicing the Presence of God.  Jesus used this book to show my heart that He is real and that He is satisfying!
We cannot be happy being single because we are meant to be married to Christ!
Being single means you are on your own. That there is no one to spend the rest of your life with.  We, as woman cannot survive like this.  We need to be loved.  That is a real need, so don’t be ashamed of it, but I have good news for you:
We have Someone Who loves us!
I fell in love with Jesus for Who He is, not just for what He does for me.   He is there to help us in our daily life.  To love us when we are completely alone.  He is our Bridegroom who satisfies the cry of our heart.
 What are your thoughts?  Have you experienced Christ like this or are you uncertain about how to satisfy this cry within you?  Comment below your thoughts or questions.  I respond to every comment.