HIS Way only!
You know how we try to teach babies to "self-soothe" to keep them from needing to be picked up whenever they start crying? Well, that's what the Lord was teaching me today.
You ever have one of those days where things just don't go your way, no matter how hard you try? You push, you pull, you scream, you yell, you pout, you frown, you use every manipulative tactic you've learned over the years, but to no avail. No matter what I did, the Lord still kept me from getting my own way. He was not going to give in to my tantrums, and He was not going to answer just because I was screaming. I was not happy, especially since HIS way required me to humiliate myself. No, I did not give any thought to the sacrifice He'd made, celebrated only just this past weekend, uh uh! My flesh wanted satisfaction, and it wanted it NOW! So I did not have a good day, to say the least.
I, uhm, was trying to deal with a few issues today and instead of first running to the Word for advice and direction, I tried tackling things in my own strength. Well, that didn't work, so I ended up having to take a walk in order to get myself back under some semblance of control. When I finally calmed down enough to humbly return to my Father's lap, He chided me by leading me to Galatians 5:19-24 (below).
Getting chastised is never pleasant, but you know what? Being left out in the cold without receiving necessary chastisement is even worse! I am soooooo glad that God still loves me enough to allow me to come back, even after such shameful behavior.
The following is straight from the Word of God; the version, The Message Bible.
19-21 It is obvious what kind of life develops out of trying to get your own way all the time: repetitive, loveless, cheap sex; a stinking accumulation of mental and emotional garbage; frenzied and joyless grabs for happiness; trinket gods; magic-show religion; paranoid loneliness; cutthroat competition; all-consuming-yet-never-satisfied wants; a brutal temper; an impotence to love or be loved; divided homes and divided lives; small-minded and lopsided pursuits; the vicious habit of depersonalizing everyone into a rival; uncontrolled and uncontrollable addictions; ugly parodies of community. I could go on.
This isn't the first time I have warned you, you know. If you use your freedom this way, you will not inherit God's kingdom.
22-23 But what happens when we live God's way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.
23-24 Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.
I pray this blesses someone, and keeps them from making the same stupid mistakes I did!