My Fitness

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Indulgences for My Indulgences

I indulge unholy behavior on a daily basis. Today's basis is plain self pity. I have an unholy cycle of sinning through self-pity which leads to the sin of over-eating which makes me fat which leads to me feeling sorry for myself. (Why do I eat when I feel bad? Luckily, I left my chocolate pie at someone else's house last night, so I've mostly just eaten animal crackers today).

...and I still feel so, I don't know, disappointed? Yes, I feel disappointed. Not only do I feel disappointed in that we are no longer moving as anticipated, but I am disappointed in God. I hope this a safe place for my confession. The actual depth of my thoughts was, "Why can't he just leave us alone?" Why does He keep teaching us and trying to get us to trust Him more? I know He will always provide for us and I know everything will turn out ok, but why must this process of finding a real job take so long?

I knew it was sinful and wrong the moment the thought finished. But there it lay. Thought-ed [that's how I said it in my head]. It could not be unthought. The true horror of this thought is that it revealed my innermost being. Vile and unholy. I found myself sympathizing with the Israelites as they left Egypt. I knew what they were feeling. They just wanted rest. They didn't want all this testing. An all-powerful God who is loving and gracious should be able to provide rest for His children. So why doesn't He? My accusations and cynicism grew. Now I can relate to Job. Poor man. Why did God treat such a loving and wonderful servant in such a way? Job never knew and I may never know. But our sin is the same. Surely God will have the same answer for me, then.
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Job 38
It seems I am a sinner in need of grace. God says it is not my place, and not Job's place, to question God. Can we understand as He understands? God uses the foolish things of this world to baffle the wise (I Corinthians). If a wise person cannot understand, then I humbly submit that I do not have a chance. Although I wouldn't call myself a fool, only a fool would call himself (or herself) wise. All things are in His control. He uses bad situations and evil to bring about His good. Romans 8:28 tells us that God brings all things together for His good. And Hebrews assures us that even though we can't believe with our eyes that He is in control, He truly is.

My sin was indulged. I "fell" into it. But God's grace abounds. For Christ's sake, I will indulge in His gift of grace. For while my sin abounds, His grace abounds more so. I will take my indulgence of His grace. I will accept my failings and be covered in His blood that removes stains. For it is only the sons of God that go through testing and trials...And I find encouragement in the letter to the Hebrews, chapter 12:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resister to the point of shedding your blood. And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? "My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives."

My sin that I am asked to lay aside is my selfish desire for rest from the training of God. I am encouraged to continue to run the race of life and look to Jesus as an example. Jesus lead a life that he knew would end terribly so that he might draw his sons to himself and he finished well. So I can finish well too. His shame was greater than my shame. I am ashamed to not be able to have a job and afford to live on our own. But what is that compared to the shame Jesus endured to save my entitled being? So I will endure as well.

We run out of health insurance February 1st. My parents, with whom we now live, are moving. What if we get pregnant? We'll need a new car. Where will we live? How can we afford the necessities? Will we ever be able to afford any luxuries? When the cares of my heart are many, his consolations cheer my soul. I know that mine is not as sad as other's predicaments but I still cast these cares to the Lord and allow his word to sustain me. As I started the post out, I know that I am full of sin desiring to do good and failing. And now at the end of the post, I know that it will only be his grace to sustain me. Then perhaps he will tell me, too, that my faith has made me well.

And now, some words from Daily Light on the Daily Path:
Every Branch in me [Jesus] that does not bear fruit he [the Father] takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. (John 15:2)
For he [God] is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, and they will bring offerings in righteousness to the Lord (Malachi 3:2, 3)
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who had been given to us. (Romans 5:3-5)
It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there that his father does not discipline? If you were left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate and not sons. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:8, 11-12)

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