30- Navigating Gullies and Gulches
As I consider these events of my life and all of the God stories I have told so far, I am not doing justice to
Life has problems continuously. They are called trials, tests, and challenges and they end up as GOD STORIES as I stop and cry out to the Lord and bring Him into the situation. He then has an opportunity to answer me, deliver me, change my heart, hold me tight…whatever I happen to need.
Reading God’s Word gets God into me, because Jesus IS the Word. Time spent in reading the Bible, giving it some of my time and devotion every day helps me grow in knowledge but also in grace and in favor with God. I also gain wisdom and insight about God and about living life.
We learn to trust God by walking out our faith day by day. Sometimes we make decisions that we know are not sound and suffer the consequences. Sometimes we don’t know what to do so we pray and put it in God’s hands, we keep praying, and we are led into a corner or into a failed relationship or into a bad business deal. What happened? Sorry, I don’t pretend to know.
The point is to learn from it and to keep going—and to keep trusting God. If I am honest, I will see how my flesh (my sin nature) sabotaged the situation or how the enemy got in and caused wreckage or one of many other possibilities.
If I take responsibility, I will repent, and probably will not make the same mistake again. I will be more cautious in pulling things out of the Bible and basing my life on them. I will also be more cautious in advising people when I see them struggling or when I see them assuming God will do something in a certain way. I have realized that I don’t have all the answers and that I cannot put God in a box of how I expect He will act.
While reading my story thus far, it may seem that I was spending all my time humming along beautifully in mountaintop experiences with not a care in the world.
I do not want to convey that impression, because that would be a lie, and totally unrealistic. There were ditches and pits that I fell into.
In most of the 40+ years of my Christian walk, because I have a melancholy temperament, I have found that I could get very comfortable in a gully of depression and introspection and just camp out there. Soon I would be welcoming self pity and looking for offenses. And with my fearful and insecure nature, I could always find many excuses to avoid crossing the raging rivers, be anxious about navigating the rapids, worried about snakes–worried about everything.
I will be able to talk more about the process because a few weeks after I was married to Dan I began to journal consistently. Part of my integrity is speaking plainly and speaking truthfully.