THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life

Expectancy


Wasn’t it a shock for me when I sat back and realised that my experience were pegged on the wrong things and I had been setup for failure from the beginning. Let me explain.

 

We are all raised to expect certain standards from ourselves and others to enable strong and lasting relationships. We believed that there are things each of us should do that will help the relationship succeed. When the said things are not fulfilled, one would feel that the relationship is skewed unfair.

 

Recently, I read “The Shack” by Paul Young and my thought process was challenged and changed. He talks about God looking at us with expectancy not expectation. How absolutely radical! You see, expectations are standards and make us judge our relationships with others based on what either one of us are supposed to do and achieve. When the ‘requirements’ are not met we get disappointed and hurt.

 

God on the other hand looks at us very differently. He looks at us with expectancy. What is that? Well, He created us and knows our humanity. He knows that we may not get it right the first time yet He still has hope that one day we will get there. When we don’t get there He smiles, forgives and says maybe tomorrow. He looks at us in love and with the knowledge that one day we will get it and we will be all He desires of us to be.

 

In view of that, how then do we need to treat one another? I think the way to go is expectancy…meaning that we need to develop a never ending belief that it will be well and all will work out fine. I am learning every day that when I don’t put my expectations on others I am better able to have peace and joy all the time. However, I desire to move from expectation to expectancy, I must deal with myself and what I don’t like about me. I am forced to look at myself and deal with the issues that arise from the waiting and the attitudes I have inadvertently created in my heart, for I cannot give what I don’t have.

 

It is often easier said than done but I know that with God all things are possible and I will be in the space one day that  will not load expectations on people rather I will live with an open, warm and expectant heart that allows everyone to be themselves and free me to be happy and loving life.

 

Papa how I desire a heart like yours and love that is deep and wide as mine has failed me time and time again. I know it is part of a process and the process at times scares me to follow yet I want to believe that you are all I need and will ever need. 

THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life

A new kind of love


“I had waited so long to see him and then the day came…it felt like hundreds of years since the last meeting and yet it was just a couple of days…ok hours. We had talked and expressed the need to touch base and it heightened the anticipation.

When I woke up in the morning my heart was pounding with anticipation that I would see him. This is the man I truly love and long to be with all the time. Every time I think of him my heart races and my senses are ignited. Every time I am in the vicinity of his presence I know he is there whether or not I know which way he has come. My heart and mind are so tuned to him it is not funny. When do I ever get over this? Then again, do I want to be away from this warmth and love?

Today I woke up charged because we had a date and I could not wait…my heart raced and my spirit longed for the time of connection. Every step closer to him made my heart race a little harder and louder till it was pounding in my ears. Every moment was like being in a pressure cooker waiting to blow and release the steam on the inside. Then I saw him; my eyes lit up; my heart nearly exploded then he looked up; saw me and smiled. My heart melted. Could I ever feel more whole than this? Could this be what love is all about?

The rest was in slow motion. He stood and walked toward me and I was mesmerised, glued to the spot, awestruck, stranded. I could only watch and wait for him where I was…rooted and stuck and lost in my own world. He was the most wonderful person to look at, love shining in his eyes, a smile on his face, his arms outstretched. Suddenly I snapped out of it and run into his arms and it all unravelled. My heart raced, my spirit soared my day was made. It was a beautiful and wonderful day and I cannot remember ever being so complete.”

An excerpt from the journal of a girl in love.

This is also the desire from the heart of Papa. He desires to be the one who makes our hearts race, whose face we desire to see, whose embrace we long to feel, whose presence we long to experience. He loves us, plain and simple. He longs for us. He yearns for moments with us as we walk in his way. Do you feel the calling to be in His presence? Do you long for Him? Do you desire Him more than anything else?

Papa, I desire to know you in this way and desire you more than anyone else. Draw me closer Papa that I may know you more. Blow my mind. Touch my heart daily. Make me more like you. Teach me to trust you regardless. Teach me to know your voice. All I want is to know you more and more.

THE CHRISTIAN WALK

Her needs


 

We all know the story of Genesis 3 where Eve was convinced to eat the fruit and she convinced Adam to eat and they were then thrown out of the garden of Eden. So did you ever really see verse 16 & 17?

To the woman He said….. Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” 

Then to Adam He said….Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life.

 

There are many women folk who are unhappy with how their relationships with their spouses are going. For a long time I have wondered if there is something we are missing then one day in conversation with my sister we discussed this scripture and I had a flash of revelation. Let me explain.

 

Eve was told that her desire would be for her husband and he would rule over her. Adam was told about toil for the rest of his days. Get it? Eve would want a deep and close relationship with her husband and look up to him for everything. Adam on the other hand was clueless. For real he was. He did not get the memo about being there for her as she needed him to be rather he was set over her as a ruler. I am not giving the men a get out of work free pass but I just realised we are on different wavelengths from the beginning. However, there is a difference between what we desire and what they were told about.

 

God’s idea of marriage was to mirror his relationship in the Trinity but sin entered and spoiled the equation. He intended total connection and commitment with clear communication and no competition. Each one would have his or her role and make a clear effort to achieve the common goals. The fall of man completely scuttled the plan so that it takes the hand of God for us to work together and be the kind of people he intends for us to be.

 

So here we have the daughters of Eve wanting deep contact and communion with the sons of Adam who are totally clueless on what is needed. The desire though, God-given, must be met differently from how we are trying to meet it. Many of the men and women have tried to meet each other’s needs but we speak different languages from each other so their efforts come to nothing at all.

 

In the end the reality is that only God can transform us to daughters of Heaven and then meet the desires of our hearts and love us the way we desire to be loved. It is utterly impossible for even a son of Heaven to be all we need them to be let alone for us to meet their needs. It is therefore my suggestion that we all take time to look to God and invest in our relationship with him that will stand the test of time and reach into eternity. He will respond and reach into our lives and sort the things that we desire to have him sort. We are called to seek first the kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to us, (Matt 6:33).

 

I believe this system of relationship also refers to relationships in all sectors of our lives including work and other social relationships. The beauty of God’s work is that He deals with one area at a time and is very interested in our relationship with him as an on-going process. There is no greater place than to find peace and love in the arms of an everlasting God who looks out for our best interests all the time whether or not it seems that way. He loves us and will show each one clearly which way to go and works it all out step by step.

 

I call each of us to take the time to get to know Him deeper and deeper and see how He will begin to work things out one step at a time.

THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life

Separating ourselves


I know I have been on about obedience and it only seems to get broader and broader in its reach. My walk has been increasingly excruciating because I am being forced to look at myself and deal with issues I would rather not have to face. We all know that change is not usually easy but the harder part is just getting on with things.

 So this weekend I had the greatest time of my life in a long time and I just cannot explain the refreshment and renewal I felt. I was with friends and loved ones and that was just a blast. However, it got me thinking about the path my life has taken and I realised that this path has taken me away from many people and into the lives of others.

 I was thinking about the friends I have lost touch with and wondered whose fault it was mine or theirs or it is just life. On the other hand I know the saying that to let something go is to keep it. So why does my heart feel so alone and lonely? Why do I long for certain relationships that may never be restored? How do I want to call some people so badly but I know I would not have anything to say? Did I just walk away out of personal choice or did I really need to walk away? Was the relationship real or did I imagine it all? These are some of the questions that are running through my mind.

 Ok, now I sound like I am pessimistic yet I am just reflective and wondering since I so often feel the sense of loss and wonder what happens. One of my friends mentioned that people are just like that and very busy so we all let things go and we never really look for each other hence we should just let them be and live life. If this is true, why do I feel the need to keep my relationships going and feel the loss when they don’t? With these feelings, I beg to differ as I now know that we look for the people who matter. This then means that if I have not looked for you for a while or you have not looked for me for a while than the level of importance on either end is not that high. Get it???? On the other hand there are people who are always there and always strong and stable so no one ever thinks they ever need support. These are the people who will eventually fall off the radar and when they surface the stuff that has happened seems impossible to have come from that person.

 Look around and notice who has been missing and consider them. I would not advocate for forced relationships. There are people who after a while we know are no longer of value or substance and are therefore going to be a bog down to have. Before you go about looking for people just because you have not seen them take time to talk to God about it and be sure that this is someone He desires you have a lasting relationship with. If God is silent maybe this is a person who needs more time before you reach out.

 When you think of someone or miss them, please call them, text them or inbox them. They could be in the midst of a very hard time in life and need some encouragement or they could have just the word you need to hear that would totally change the way you live today. You never know who needs you to reach out and there is great impact you can have. You are the angel or the warm person and heart that God can use to minister his grace and peace to others. Do not let the opportunity pass you by. Additionally, you never know who will change the course of your life with a simple word or contact so let you senses be alert and open to the people you need to connect with and make the difference.

 A great week of renewal and strengthening.

THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life

OBEDIENCE:


These last few weeks I have been working through the whole lesson of obedience. There are things in my life that I have needed to do but have not had the guts to do yet despite the fact that I know there are far-reaching effects of not doing them. I know you know what I am talking about when I say that often it is harder to do the things we know we should do. Even Paul said “The things I want to do, I do not but those I do not want to do, I do.”

You see, for as long as I know what I need to do and do not do it I live in disobedience to my Lord. However, being as human as I am and working with what I have, leaves me often sorely incompetent to achieve the desired goal and fearful to no end. I struggle with doing things that will alienate me from people more because I don’t want to carry the weight of a broken or bruised relationship. How ironic, because doing nothing hurts me and leaves me unable to be the kind of person I need to be. Catch 22 huh?

As I have thought through things I have realised that the greatest motivator not to do anything is FEAR. When we need to put in a resignation letter fear of the next step makes us sit on it. When we need to leave a relationship that is not working fear of rejection and/or loneliness keeps us in it. When we need to start a business fear of failure keeps us in employment. When we need to take the next step in our walk with Jehovah and it is a strange one fear of the loss of control makes us do nothing.

I had to overcome the fear of following Jehovah recently by doing his bidding unconditionally. The thing I could not explain is that I was petrified. The strangest thing was the desperate fear that letting go would make me fall flat on my face. Ok, I know God loves me and wants the best for me but at this point I could not bring myself to do what I needed to do. After a lot of soul-searching I realised that I had lost my faith and trust in God’s ability to sort me out and was depending on myself for solutions. So I asked myself, when did I lose this ability to trust? What happened to me and where did it happen?

I believe it all started I begun working with my hands and I learnt to provide for my needs. Isn’t it ironic that I say I was providing yet I wasn’t the one providing but it was Jehovah and I had just lost perspective? In the scheme of things opportunities opened up and after a while I lost the conscious remembrance that it is He who creates options then I find and fill. The loss of faith and trust begun with a subtle move from the extraordinary to the ordinary of just being able to put food on the table and make ends meet. In all honesty these provisions did not make up for the loss of a light and airy heart yet it never occurred to me that I had shifted my focus hence the stagnation. I had forgotten the freedom found in being in the centre of the will of Jehovah.

So, what did I do? I got to a place where my life wasn’t working as it needed to and I could only nothing on my own any more. In view of this I spent time sitting back and chilling learning to slow down and listen to the world around me. I found stillness in the quiet place and after I had sat still for a couple of days I begun to hear the birds chirping, the crickets creaking, the children laughing in school and many other things. It is strange…no surreal; to be in a place all by myself and be so at peace and in tune with nature…I must admit I am still developing that part. In the middle of this I turned back to Jehovah and asked him to speak to me and show me the way. His answer was strange ever so strange. He said, “You are standing in the way of your own destiny…you know what I have been asking you to do. Do it and then come back.” Only a father can say that to a child and it was the reality for me.

What I needed to do was hard and heartrending but seeing that I had no other way out I did what he had asked me to do and it was amazing. I can say that everyday from then a new step has been revealed and I am back to a place I cannot remember being for a while now. I love this place and realise that my destiny and peace in my life is pegged on my ability to listen and obey. I cannot say it is easy to follow everyday but the benefits and peace that comes with it makes I worth it. I love Jehovah and will do all I can to stay close to him

Just today I was reminded that the only way to be all I am called to be I must make obedience a lifestyle. So often we talk about the lifestyle of worship and never of obedience. My life has changed and I am free.

Obedience has set me free…how about you?