Monday, November 10, 2014

Wilderness Confession #2

Today I am cleansing my system.

My physical system.
My spiritual system.
My system as a whole.

The truth is, I have used this "wandering" period to do just that, wander. Which is okay to some extent. It's okay that I am not sure where I am going and that I am just sort of enjoying the in between-ness of the present, but what is not okay is that I have allowed every area of my life to become messy and undisciplined as I wander.

I am realizing that because my life lacks structure and plans at the moment, I have failed to bring structure or even intention to any part of my life. I am just sort of letting it happen. Health wise, financially, and worst of all spiritually. I go about making all of these to do lists filled with phone calls and errands and little random things that need to get done because I suppose they give me some feeling of structure or purpose or maybe control, but then the areas of my life that I should be absolutely intentional about (especially right now) I am just leaving to just sort of happen.

I am of the firm belief that this very state of life has led me to a large majority of the spiritual struggle and perspective issues I have been facing as of late. Because I have been so unintentional with something as important as my spiritual life in a place as wide open and uncertain as the wilderness, I have been left with nothing to do but come face to face with every single issue in my life which has thus led to a lot of whining and complaining and too much focus on self, simply because I have given myself nothing else to focus on.

It's as if I found myself in the wilderness without food and SO hungry. Rather than be intentional about finding a way to feed myself even in this place that I am unfamiliar with, I just sort of wander around hoping I will stumble upon some food. And in the meantime, instead of focusing on finding the food or distracting myself, I just zone in on the fact that I am so SO hungry and that I am probably going to just die here because I have nothing to eat and no way out. *Now, I know that God's provision in these places is something I have touched on heavily in my survival guide blog posts, but even though it is so true that God will provide it is still also true that we must be looking for His provision or we may very well miss it (because it does not come packaged as we expect) and thus become angry with Him for not providing when He has indeed been doing so all along.

Yes. That's exactly what this is like. Instead of being super intentional about what I can be intentional about in this unfamiliar place, I have just sort of been wandering around hoping that the answers and revelations will find me and one day I will just wake up and be out. But the truth is, I can't claim to be confused and lost without direction from above if I am not being intentional about letting Him have the time and the space to clear up the confusion and give me direction. I cannot hate it here if I will not do the work to shift my focus and my perspective to something other than the fact that I am just stuck here wandering. I came here refusing to plan because I had watched so many of my plans crash and burn in such a short amount of time. I decided that perhaps the point of here was so God could get me to just let go of the plans and let Him lead and take control. I don't think I was all wrong about that. I think that in a lot of ways God did need to break me of that and finally take control of our direction. But, I must confess that a part of me was refusing to plan out of anger and perhaps a little bit of spite. A little bit of me may have been throwing my hands up to God saying, "Fine. I'm done making the plans. We see what happens when I do. So, you do it. You take care of everything. I'll just wander through this place you brought me to and wait it out until You decide to fill me in." And that's when I got WAY off track. Because my motive in not planning became poisoned, and I gave up control of every area of my life, even the areas that have always been and always will be my responsibility. Truth: God will plan for me and His plans will succeed and prosper. Truth: HIs plans will succeed and prosper when I am faithful to do my part and seek Him and search Him out. Basically I needed a major attitude and heart condition check.

So it's time. Time to cleanse my system of all the junk I have allowed in by just allowing life to come at me in the wilderness. Time to be intentional with my heart condition and my attitude and my health in order to not only survive in this place, but to thrive here. And the way to be intentional about something as important as my heart condition is to be intentional about spending time with the only one who can give me the right heart condition I need to face every day in a place like this. To be intentional about looking up to the only one who could ever give me the right directions through this wilderness. To allow Him to cleanse my system of the "Israel" and "Egypt wishing" I have allowed to creep in.

"But God led the people around by way of the wilderness toward the Red Sea. And the people of Israel went up out of the land of Egypt equipped for battle." Exodus 13:18

"I must learn that the purpose of my life belongs to God, not me. God is using me from His great personal perspective, and all He asks of me is that I trust Him. When I stop telling God what I want, He can freely work His will in me without any hinderance. He can crush me, exalt me, or do anything else He chooses. He simply asks me to have absolute faith in His goodness."
-Oswald Chambers

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