I can remember one summer early in my high school years when our youth pastor decided that we would be studying holiness. Holiness….that God is Holy. For an ENTIRE summer! We thought maybe we would get to study the end times or something exciting like that. We weren’t exactly thrilled. It honestly sounded kind of boring. Yeah…God is holy. We already know that. That’s it? That’s all we’re going to study? ALL SUMMER!? What was interesting though is that it became a of study of who God is and completely unfolded His attributes. I actually learned a lot that summer and it was something I actually enjoyed!
What I realized recently however that it was most of what I learned that perceived boring summer was in fact merely head knowledge. I thought I knew all about who God was. On the contrary…I knew what He was…not who. I just couldn’t understand in my heart until He actually showed me through so many circumstances as I grew older just how great, how AWESOME, how gracious and compassionate and powerful He really is. And the cool thing…He just keeps showing me because He has taught me…a Martha…to actually be still!
I always thought it was odd that I never asked God why I got sick. For some reason I just never felt right about it. Not that I didn’t ponder it in my own mind or wonder on occasion but I never specifically asked Him why He let it happen. It took me years to realize that the answer to why was in fact answered with WHO. I have learned by Him showing me in so many REAL ways not just about God but I’ve gotten to actually know Him more…to see his mercies and His astounding love and incomprehensible grace. That is worth a hundred lifetimes of pain…and I got to experience it first hand in this ONE life! What a gift!
Last week I was wearily trudging through my day and the thought came to my mind that it won’t always be this way. There will come a day when the struggles of this physical life will end and I will never endure them again. My mind just couldn’t wrap itself around that promise even though I know it to be true. Even though I don’t allow myself to think about being in pain every day for the rest of my life…I know it is reality and I’ve simply come to accept it. I don’t know what it’s like anymore not to suffer. Then I started to think about God. How He is never weary…He never faints…He is never tired…He is always all-powerful and mighty…everlasting! Resting simply in who God is quite often what gets me through the hard things as I rely on His strength because in my own I crumble and all the while I just keep learning, growing and changing.
These past few weeks of the Daniel Fast were such an amazing experience hearing from the Lord. I spent at first a half hour a day in prayer…then an hour…then an hour and a half…then an entire naptimes and still ran out of time! I just enjoyed being in His presence so much…and there are so many needs out there of those we know and love to bring to Him! Through that time with Him (and extremely limiting complete time-wasters like Facebook and blast that Pinterest!) He so clearly showed me exactly what I should be putting into my body to honor Him with it. I feel so much peace and He was so gracious to show me what I was searching for. Even a year ago I would not have been ready to surrender in this capacity (no dairy, no sugar, no grains, no beans, no peanuts, and less Facebook!?)…but I can see how He has prepared me to get to this place and actually given me a desire to be obedient without complaint. I do in fact feel better physically. Though I certainly still have pain and fatigue my other ailments have all ceased completely and I know it is because God has powerfully shown me the diet, exercise and balance I physically need to remain strong spiritually…which includes getting up weekday mornings at 5 a.m. Now we all know that is God’s strength…NOT mine! He is so faithful and true and His promises are for real! His Word tells us in Jeremiah 33:3 to “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” He certainly does! I am overwhelmingly thankful and in awe at how He has shown me who He is!
I was driving home today after an amazing morning of worshiping the Lord for who He is and having fellowship in God’s Word with some very special women and then holding a friend’s brand new precious baby girl and I was so overcome and moved to tears with God’s marvelous creation and His incredible love for us. I was driving through a winding, wooded road and this song came on the radio and if I could have I would’ve fallen to my knees. The truth is…what do I know of who God is? The more I think I know…the more I realize I know nothing. The farther I think I’ve come…the more I see how I have only just begun. It is such an amazing blessing to be able to experience God right now! The beauty of this life even though it is difficult is that we don’t have to wait until we get to heaven…we can do it right now! He doesn’t have to be simply head knowledge…in fact…He shouldn’t be! God is alive and waiting for each one of us to draw nearer to Him so He can reveal Himself to us…which is FAR from boring. Not to know why…not to know what…to know WHO!