Monday, September 21, 2015
God, Please Change My "Want to"
If you are or ever have been married, then you can relate to what I am about to bring you in this message:
There are times when you do things with your spouse that you just don't want to do. Inside you are fussing as you put on your attire and prepare yourself to do what it is they have asked you to do with them. "MAN, I just wanted to sit at home today and relax. Now he/she's got me up and dragging me here, there and yonder to do who knows what. Why can't I just have ONE day of peace by myself? I don't feel like being married today. Can I just take a break?"
But, you don't. And, the reason you don't is because you know, deep inside, that you love your spouse, even though you aren't "feeling the love right now." And, you also know that there is going to come a time when you need your spouse to go and do and be with you, and they are not going to feel like doing it -- but they will; for the same reason.
Truth be known, as you are out tonight, actually enjoying whatever it is that you did not feel like doing with your spouse in the beginning, when you get home, you find yourself thankful for your spouse, and the experience you just had. Your relationship gets stronger.
Ephesians Chapter 5 has this to say:
22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so [let] the wives [be] to their own husbands in every thing.
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife [see] that she reverence [her] husband.
One of the reasons God created marriage is for those that needed to experience the message of how it is to have a relationship with Him.
Everyone knows I am single; but, I like to tell everyone that I am married to God. What they don't get, is that my marriage to God is just like if I were married to a man.
For the past week, I have been experiencing a lot of frustration and anger in my life. It has caused friction with my family. Some of the things I said to my sister during one of our "frictional episodes" caused her to say, "Now, that was not very godly of you." To which I replied, "I don't feel like being godly today. He understands."
What happens when you tell your wife/husband, "No. I don't feel like doing what you asked me to do today." Yep, more friction is created. Then, after putting your foot down, you get your way and your wife/husband, goes away and leaves you alone. Later, if you value your relationship at all, you seek him/her out and apologize for being the south-end of a north-bound donkey and pray that he/she has more sense than you had and, even though he/she doesn't feel like it, forgives you.
Both of you know it's going to happen again. It's a matter of time. The next time it might be you doing the forgiving. You also know that you value your relationship enough to keep it, in spite of the ups and downs.
As I said, I didn't feel like being godly. But, I realized after a couple of days that even though I didn't feel like being godly, I needed to go through the motions until the feeling passes. I still needed to be who HE needed me to be. If someone needed me to be the hands and feet of God, I needed to be able to do that, regardless of how I felt.
Today, I was supposed to take someone who was struggling financially to help show them around in order to know what resources they could depend on until they got back on their feet. It is always a blessing to be able to bless someone else with knowledge on how they can survive as they wait on God to act in order to better their lives. She called and cancelled, and I was, honestly, relieved. I didn't have to do what I didn't feel like doing, but was going to do because I knew it was the right thing to do, and God needed me to do it.
So, as I am sitting there, relaxing, thinking, relieved, I get a knock at my door. Another lady who needed my help was asking for me to assist her by taking her to a local feeding ministry that gave out groceries. Now, when I usually take her, the routine is that we get a number, then we hear the message, eat, get the groceries, then go home. When we got there today, they had given out all their numbers, but said that we could still stay and eat if we like. As an incentive, they promised the lady that after all the numbers were called, if they had any extra groceries left over, they would help her.
Needless to say, we stayed. Even though I did not want to stay. On top of that, I had to stay until after everyone left. Yes, inside I was fussing.
Just before the meal, the preacher-lady gets up and gives a message on 2nd Corinthians, chapter 4:
6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
She then began to preach about how God has not abandoned us, no matter HOW we feel.
When she was done, I thought about this. Did I feel abandoned? No. However, truth be told, I DID feel as if I had walked away. How could I reconcile that with the message.
She went and sat down and began calling the numbers.
I got up from my table and went to introduce myself to her and I told her of my struggle this week, "I am going through a situation right now that has me feeling angry and frustrated, and I just don't feel like being godly. I don't feel like God has abandoned me, I feel like I am the one walking away and I don't want to. I mean, I know I shouldn't feel that way or do that, and I don't want to, but it's just there. I just feel like...I need space."
She smiled and explained to me, "Your relationship with God is just that: a RELATIONSHIP. You are going to have ups and downs, just like in any other relationship. Usually when there are down times in a relationship, it is because of the falling away of one or the other member of the relationship. Since you are dealing with GOD, then the problem is YOU, because God NEVER falls away. It's up to you to ask Him to forgive you and take you back."
I said, "But, that's just it. I don't wanna. I mean, I WANT to, but that's not how I feel."
Again she smiled and said, "Sometimes we need to get on our knees and ask God to change our want to. Do you believe that He can do all things?"
I thanked her. She asked me, "Did I tell you what you wanted to hear?"
"No," I said. Then added, "But, you told me what I needed to hear, and you did your job. Thank you."
I am privileged and honored right now to tell you that I am married to the best person I could ever dream of being married to: The person of God through Jesus Christ. I am not ever going to seek a divorce. I can't imagine my life without Him.
Tonight, as I get down on my knees, I am thankful for His Grace, as well as His Mercy. I am thanking Him that He is always with-in reach, no matter how far away I aim to walk. And, I am asking Him to keep my "want to" in check.