So they stuck me in the dryer, closed the door and turned it on! At least that is what I feel like. I have been through the ringer, and I am back to report, "GOD IS GOOD!"
Ok, let me get you caught up with a play by play. Diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Took medicine to correct it. The medicine made me sick for about six days. Questioned God's love for me. Took the natural route and gave up every thing tasty in my life (only to find better tasting food that I never knew about) and started exercising everyday, All in the meantime I was eaten up with bitterness, anger, a complaining heart and pride!!!!
I recently listened to a talk, which you can find here under the Newly Married Seminar. It was great for my marriage, but something more interesting, it was great for my walk with Christ. I realized I have been going through these last eight months with the biggest chip on my shoulder, which if I still had, I would probably try to eat it because of the lack there of in my diet. My life was filled moment by moment with complaints, anger and bitterness. My husband was having a hard time dealing with it, as well as everyone else around me, I am sure. He encouraged me to really get in the word as well as talking through my sin many nights trying to help me figure out what was going on!!! I am so thankful for him. I also remember thinking that I was just depressed, and that all of my new friends really hadn't even seen the real me.
So, as I listened to this talk, I was flooded with conviction of my deserving mentality. This was the root of it all. I felt like I didn't deserve what I was getting, whether it was from God, my husband or my circumstance (which is ultimately from God). So, when I felt I was deserving of something more, I would respond with the faithful fruit of bitterness, or anger and most of the time on top of those, complaints. What is the truth? The truth is that I do deserve Hell. "For the wages of sin is death." God says, "For all have sinned and fallen short." Therefor, I must conclude, I DESERVE HELL AND NOTHING LESS!!!!
We must understand this if Christ is to change our life. To turn from our ways and to trust him as our Lord and Savior, "For He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all like sheep have gone astray each of us have turned to his own way, but the Lord has placed on him the iniquity of us all!" Praise God for HIS salvation.
We must understand that for salvation, but I believe also, we must live by this as well. Live every minute knowing that God gave us a gift, and we deserve Hell. I wasn't living by this. I was living in light of myself and what I wanted and felt I deserved. This was a lie. God also says, "Flee the evil desires of youth (for me a deserving mentality) and pursue righteousness, faith love and peace along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart!"
I know that I have learned many things in this season of life, but I think this one is different. This is the root of all of my bad fruit!!! I also believe that it is a discipline to give up your deserving mentality. There are many times during the day I have to practically say, "It is ok that this isn't the way I want it, I deserve Hell." "Let us run the race with endurance." It is hard and a discipline, but we must!!!!
So, wherever your season us, whether it be a crying baby (or two), a sick pregnancy, pilled high with homework, at home, without a home, looking for a home, stuck under a pile of clothes...etc, know that God has graciously given you life!!! This will produce a heart of thankfulness and love for others!!!!
On a side note: You know it is funny, as I wrote the title of this post "Cultivating a heart of thankfulness, I remember that I posted a question some time ago, "How do you cultivate a heart of thankfulness." I didn't have this heart and wanted some thoughts!!! How kind of God to help me understand this!!!!