Where’s Your Focus?

Where’s Your Focus?

For days, weeks, months and even years I have been bombarding God with the same questions over and over and over again.

Just to write that sentence makes me shudder.

Who do I think I am to question The Almighty God, The Maker of heaven and earth about what He chooses to do in my life? And yet that's exactly what I have been doing.

I ask Him why, what for, how long, what next, will it ever end. All questions relating to my chronic illness. When my illness is not so bad, then the questioning ceases, but as soon as the illness flares up so does the questioning!

I truly believe the Lord welcomes our questions, but we must eventually accept His answers and move on.

To this day, the Lord keeps giving me the very same answer to my questions.

In essence He says, "Barb, My dear child, let Me direct your life. I know what I am doing. There are some things You just cannot comprehend. Please, trust Me and My ways. Put your focus on Me, praise Me, show others the love of Christ and let Me take care of you."

BUT unfortunately to my own demise, I didn't care for God's answer, so I kept on asking and questioning which ultimately led me straight to the pit of discouragement, despair and depression.

Living life solely upon "my feelings and emotions" instead of in the power, strength and grace of the Lord.

It was one huge pity party after another, but it was definitely NOT a party at all.

I got to the point where I couldn't see past myself.

NO, I didn't turn my back on the Lord.

NO, I did not lose my personal relationship with Jesus.

What I was guilty of was attempting to live the Christian life in my own strength, in my own power, with my own answers, which is TOTALLY impossible!

I give the Lord praise for Brian's faithfulness for encouraging me, edifying me from God’s Word, praying for me and WITH me during this entire time.

Over the past few months the depression continued to escalate, and last Monday everything came crashing down upon me.

I just wanted to give in.

Throw in the towel.

Ready for it all just to stop.

Didn't want to do it anymore.

Before I knew it, I had my Pastor on the phone and I praise the Lord for his gentle words of wisdom which the Lord is still using in my life. I also give thanks to the Lord that so much of the godly counsel my Pastor gave to me was the very same counsel Brian gives to me!
That made me smile BIG!

The Lord had brought me to a place of brokenness.

A place where I no longer wanted bitterness, anger and depression to rule my life.

I no longer wanted to be angry at God for allowing this chronic illness to be part of my life.

I'm praising the Lord for a renewed sense of hope and peace.

A few days later the Lord led me to a sermon that is still lingering in my heart and has been a tremendous help. I'd like to share just a few points so that, Lord willing, it can be a help to you as well.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
Hebrews 11:1

We must trust in the God which we know and love even when we haven't yet been "brought up to speed" in the things He's doing in our lives.

"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding."
Proverbs 3:5

This is the verse you come to when you've asked God for help and that help doesn't seem to be coming the way YOU thought it would because you're leaning on your OWN understanding.

We are told, positively, to trust the Lord and, negatively, not to trust our own understanding. If we trust in the Lord, we cannot also depend upon our own ability to understand everything God is doing.

Most of us have a desperate desire to understand, but in so many areas we MUST acknowledge that we just cannot understand God's ways.

Here is the reason why we often don't understand exactly what God is doing,
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LordFor as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts."
Isaiah 55:8-9 

We must be willing to trust Him with the margins which exist between our knowledge and His knowledge.

When we insist on God always making sense to our finite minds, we are setting ourselves up for spiritual trouble.

We often will not understand how God is causing "all things to work together for good" (Romans 8:28), but when we trust Him with all our hearts, we know that He is. He will never fail us.

The answers to our questions is NOT an explanation, but a person. And that person is Jesus Christ.

The bottom line

Just two choices

Live my life in the flesh allowing my ever-changing emotions and feelings to rule my life and end up as a stagnant, unfruitful, angry, miserable, ungrateful, bitter, depressed Christian.

Live my life in the power and strength of The Holy Spirit, allowing the Lord to lead me according to HIS will, bearing fruit, bringing honor and glory to the Lord. Being joyfully confident and thankful in my relationship and fellowship with my Saviour.

Only I can make the choice. And right now I must purpose to make the correct choice every single day. Sometimes on a moment by moment basis.

"If you dwell on your own feelings about things rather than dwelling on the faithfulness, the love, and the mercy of God, then you're likely to have a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Our feelings are very fleeting and ephemeral (momentary), aren't they? We can't depend on them for five minutes at a time. But dwelling on the love, faithfulness, and mercy of God is always safe."
Elisabeth Elliott


If you have been helped by this post and think it could be helpful to someone you know, please share this post on the social network of your choice for me.

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May God Bless You,

Barb

4 Comments

  • Elaine

    August 29, 2018 at 6:01 pm Reply

    Thank you dear Barb for being so open, sharing your struggles to help us in our struggles. Never doubt that God is using you to be a blessing to me and others! YOU are a joy too our Lord as your tender obedient heart trust Him; therefore GOD IS GLORIFIED!!

    • Barb

      August 30, 2018 at 2:12 pm Reply

      Oh my dear sweet friend how I thank the Lord for bringing you into my life twenty plus years ago! You have been, and continue to be, an encouragement to me in so many different ways. I praise the Lord for the words which HE gave to me to share! I love and greatly appreciate you my BFF ❤

  • Linda

    September 3, 2018 at 4:00 am Reply

    What a great quote from Elisabeth Elliot, Barb - and how true it is. Dear friend, your openness brings a "realness" (is that a word?) to your post. You present your struggles as they are, while still pointing to Jesus. You express what so many think or feel - and I'm sure many readers do identify with you, those who have chronic illness as well as others whose struggles are different, , because of that. Thank you, precious sister and friend, for reminding us all to trust the Lord completely and not rely on our own understanding.

    • Barb

      September 4, 2018 at 10:36 pm Reply

      Linda, I greatly appreciate your words. You are a precious friend. A balm to my soul. This was another difficult post to publish since it was greatly personal but the Lord kept prompting me so I published it praying that it might help just one person who may be struggling with discouragement or depression. I did hear from several people who thanked me for sharing openly and honestly. Praise the Lord! I love and appreciate you my sweet friend. ❤

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