I really enjoy a good play on words,
something that makes me stop and ponder for a moment.
An oxymoron is a great example of a
figure of speech in which contradictory words are used together.
Honestly, my whole life seems to be one big oxymoron. Growing up I wanted nothing more than to be accepted, to feel like I 'fit in' with the my friends in school, to have a 'normal family'. WOW, now those are two oxymoron's if ever there were one! I love how in Scripture God speaks to us using a variety of ways trying to get our attention. God is so creative in getting his message across; virgin-birth, God-man, born again. While Jesus mainly spoke in parables he also used oxymoron's; servant leaders, first shall be last, the lost shall be found. Whether that means lost in the literal sense as in having no sense of direction or lost in the Biblical sense as in not knowing Christ.
But I've digressed.....
Here's just little bit of my background, some food for thought if you will, not for pity mind you but to give you a bit of insight on how I gained my perspective of life. Back in the day, fourth grade to be exact, I had just moved which meant starting a new school, new friends Sigh! Our new home was a small, single-wide trailer on a large hog farm in Nowhere, Missouri. One of the things I vividly remember about this home was that the water we had came from a small pond about 1/4 mile away. I mean it literally came directly from the pond, that means no filtration, no chlorine, NADA, piped directly to our home via the fish smelling pond and everything that came with it! Yes we eventually got city water, but the stage was set.
So started my journey with wanting, desiring, craving of more......anything, anyhow, anyway. God wasn't on my radar. 1 John 2:16 puts it like this: "For the world offers only a craving of physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see and pride in our achievements and possessions...." They say you don't miss what you don't know or have, but I don't agree with that statement. Look at Eve for crying out loud!
Fast forward. At 19 I was pregnant, alone, scared out of my mind and still the gnawing of more was growing greater within me. I moved to Arizona to live with my mom, dad and sister, to start a new life, in my mind it was going to be a better life. Eventually I married my high school sweetheart, was able to quit a pretty good job and help him as he started a soon to be very successful painting business.
Things were starting to look up, in my mind anyway.
"For as a man thinks in his heart so is he...", Proverbs 23:7
We built a couple of dream homes, had a cabin up north, went on trips, bought whatever we wanted. It's like watching a scene in a horror movie, you can't help but peek. Oh can anyone relate? More was never enough. Success seemed like it would never end, but even with all the worldly success my desires for more was insatiable. But God continued to draw me and eventually He won. Once I let him into my heart, let's just say God began to some major housework.
When the economy went south we lost our painting business, we lost our dream home, the cabin, the credit cards, etc, etc. My head was spinning, how could God allow this to happen? Here's where the story goes crazy, after a having MAJOR HISSY FIT it hit me like a ton of bricks.
I wasn't losing, I was gaining
Every single earthly thing I thought I needed to be content was a lie. I used to get so scared of the unknown, I took for granted the things of this world. Situations I thought controlled, using my manipulating schemes to hide from reality and live on my own terms and strength.
Paul seems to know me exactly, I am a mess!
I used to think that it was me, that I gave up these things. But I now know, God, in his great mercy and kindness took the things from me that were standing in the way of the work he continues to do in my mind and heart.
"But I gave up those things that were so important to me for Christ.
Even more than that, I think of everything as worth nothing.
It is so much better to know Christ Jesus my Lord.
I have lost everything for Him.
And I think of these things as worth nothing so that I can have Christ.
I want to be as one with Him.
I could not be right with God by what the Law said I must do.
I was made right with God by faith in Christ.
I want to know Him..
I want to have the same power
in my life that raised Jesus from the dead.
I want to understand and have a share in His sufferings
and be like Christ in His death.
Then I may be raised up from among the dead."
I love in Philippians 4:4,7 where Paul says, "Be full of joy always because you belong to the Lord, Again, I say be full of joy!......The peace of God is much greater than the human mind can understand. This peace will keep your hearts and minds through Christ."
God isn't finished with me on this journey, I know that now. But instead of dreading what's next, I ask God what he wants to show me not only about myself but more importantly about his character.
Over and over he sweetly reminds me:
I was once a child of the world. I am now a child of God.
What about you? What is God trying to pry your hands off of? Perhaps he wants to sweetly shed some beautiful light on something that has been hidden in the dark for far to long.
Can you hear God
in your ear
that you are his beloved?
Written by: Julie Lynch
Julie is a newly certified Biblical Life Coach. She loves mentoring women and stepping out of her "pond" as she lets God totally reorder and reorient her life- over and over. You can follow Julie at stilladirtroadgirl.blogspot.com