Archive for March, 2012

Reflection: Have you searched me, oh God?

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Although I haven’t had an opportunity to meet her personally, I’ve been “hanging out” with Joyce Meyer lately.  She accompanies me while I drive around since I have her teaching CD playing over and over in my car.

The other day, she shared about sensing God prompt her to give away an outfit she had recently purchased.  She mentions how she argued with the Lord saying, “I just bought that dress and I bought a pair of earrings to match!”  Our Father replied, “I was just going to ask you to give up the dress, but if you can’t handle that, I might as well ask you to give up the earrings too.”  She then mentions how our Father had challenged her in her generosity.  He said, “You give others the impression that you are so generous, but little do they know that what you’re been giving away are the very ones which you haven’t worn for five years.  Rather than expecting them to thank you, you should be thanking them for taking that junk from you.”

I chuckle each time I hear that, but I then remember her saying, “You’re laughing out there, but you’re no better than me.  You get to sit and laugh and hide your shortfalls, while I’m up here sharing with you all that Our Father has taught me through mine.  In truth, I am so grateful for Joyce’s courage to openly share her shortfalls.  Her openness and her humour encourage me to examine myself, to see if I fall in a similar manner.

My heart cries “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23-24

“Why ask God?” some may ask.  My heart replies “Who else can I trust?”  Who else knows me so well so that even if I tried to deceive myself because I am afraid to face my truth, He would know what I was doing and He alone would understand why I was doing it.  Who else would love me so much so that even if I failed in the worst way, He would still be there, believing that I was worth standing by.

Yesterday I stumbled across the passage “For I KNOW that the Lord is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.” Psalm135:5 I smiled as I rested on that passage because the psalmist didn’t think he knew God from the words of others, but he KNEW God from his heart through his own personal walk with Him.  He knew God so intimately so that he could claim “O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his mercy endures for ever.” Psalm 136:1 How could the psalmist proclaim that God’s mercy endures forever unless he himself experienced it!

The past few months have brought about their challenges.  The consequences of irrational fears and phobias had finally caught up and it was only through God’s grace and mercy that I had been able to successfully face and work through them.  It is amazing how our Father had prepared me ahead of time, bringing the needed healing in December and yet it was His daily, moment by moment intimate walk with me, as He held my every thought captive, that I was able to work through and successfully accomplish what I had feared and failed to accomplish for so long.

I eventually realized that it was the self-condemnation that I was afraid of.  The Holy Spirit was there all these years, convicting and prompting me to move on, and yet it was an unhealed childhood fear that followed me through adulthood and perfectionism that overwhelmed me whenever I attempted to move forward.

“You don’t know anything.”  “You always make mistakes and they’re always stupid ones.”  “Did you see that?  That was so simple and yet you can’t get it right!”  These are only a few of the thoughts that bombarded my mind so that holding and opening a simple letter overwhelmed me!

Where was God in all this?  He was always there with me and we always talked about it, but He couldn’t help me until I was ready to move on.  It was so easy to trust Him, that wasn’t the problem.  The difficulty lay in trusting and believing in myself.

“Search me oh God and know my heart.” He searched and He knew my heart.  Although He watched me set my fears down at the foot of Jesus’ cross time and time again, He also watched me very quickly take them back… perhaps because I was afraid I would eventually have to face fear itself?  “Test me and know my anxious ways.” He knew what I was afraid to face even when I couldn’t comprehend what I was afraid of.  “See if there be any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” He knew the cost of the consequences of my fear and how it would affect me and the others and so He worked on me.  Little by little, moment by moment, teaching me and strengthening my inner “man” so that eventually I reached a critical point where I could no longer survive at “status quo” and pivotal change needed to take place.

Did He leave me then?  No.  He continued standing by me, ensuring that my thoughts stayed focus on whatever was good and pure.   Only once did my thoughts slip as I spoke out loud, “Aren’t you so stupid?”  As I spoke, I immediately recognized the attack of the enemy and I began to praise God for all the good that was happening.  Victoriously, the negative thought left as quickly as it came.  In the past, my mind would always go foggy and confusion would set in, preventing me from understanding what I was trying to work on. This time my mind remained clear and I succeeded in accomplishing what I had failed to do.  Thank YOU Lord!

And so, together with the psalter I pray…

Thank You Lord  that you have searched me and you know me.   “You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.   You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways.  Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.  You beset me behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit?  Or where shall I flee from your presence?  If I ascent to heaven, you are there!  If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!  If I take the wings of morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me.  If I say, “Let only darkness cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you, the night is as bright as day; for darkness is as light to you.” Psalm 139: 1-12

Thank you Lord for loving each one of us in spite of our flaws and thank You for the good work You have begun in us and for continuing it until the day of Jesus Christ.   Philippians 1:6 In Jesus name we pray, AMEN

God bless,

Melissa – March 26, 2012