April 18, 2012

Let God Do the Work!

Do you ever have those moments in life when you have soooo much that you feel like you must accomplish in your life, your children's lives or maybe even your husband's life? I have many moments like that especially when I think of how much I have left to teach my kids and how quickly the time is passing. I can almost panic if I allow myself to think about it for too long! As I've been painting (we should not even mention that word in today's post, but it's hard to not mention something that has consumed your life for the last two weeks!)....I digress. As I've been painting this week, I have been listening to audio recordings by Sally Clarkson, and she addressed this topic extraordinarily well in one of the recordings. She was speaking to moms, but I think we can apply this Biblical thinking to anyone or any situation.

Sally encouraged me as a mom to have faith that God is working in my children's lives. Two amazing quotes that I wrote down while listening:

"Faith is believing what will happen when you haven't seen the results yet."

"God wants us to live in the realm that only could happen if He intervened."

Are those amazing and thought-provoking or what? I have come to the conclusion that I miss out on a lot of amazing opportunities because I've tried to fix everything myself my way. I see my kiddos doing this same thing in real life. Maybe they break one of their toys, and they are trying so hard to put it back together. They finally get it put together but not the right way. It only half works. If they would come to me and ask, I could make it as good as new, but they are stubbornly trying to do it themselves, and so they do not enjoy the toy as much as they could if I had repaired it. I do the same with God. I'm so busy trying to do it all myself and make everything "just perfect" when I really am only making things worse or robbing myself of something even better that God has for me. So, I've been telling myself this week, "Walk by faith. Don't try to fix everything yourself. Walk by faith." It's hard to do though!

The next thing Sally challenged me to do was to immerse myself in God's Word. I cannot grow, and I will not change if I am not continually feasting on God's Word. I can also apply this to my "hurry up and teach my kids everything" syndrome by immersing them in Scripture too. Together, as a family, we can grow by steadily reading, memorizing, and studying God's Word. Just like physical growth, our spiritual growth doesn't happen all at once. It takes a steady diet of many good things to see the positive changes we want to see - physical or spiritual.

Thirdly, Sally mentioned prayer. This is a big one for me, and it goes back to that "I have to do it all myself" thing. Instead of stepping in all the time and trying to fix my children, there are times when I really do need to just stop and pray. Pray for wisdom from God as to how to handle the situation, but also pray that the Holy Spirit would do the "fixing" for me. After all, I'm sure He can do a much better job than I can, but again....easier said than done!

The last thing Sally mentioned in her talk was to keep an eternal perspective. Focus on laying up those spiritual treasures in Heaven. Don't let the small things in life take you down. Remember, what is truly important and sift through the rest. We cannot do it all, so do what matters most! It occurred to me yesterday as I was thinking on this that there is no way I can teach my children everything that I want them to know or that they need to know. After all, I'm still learning all the time myself! What I can do, though, is to give them (with the help and guidance of the Holy Spirit) an eternal focus and perspective, a love for God, and a passion for pleasing Him.

Another quote that I madly dashed down was this:

"Those who give up in the battle only remember defeat, but those who persevere to the end remember the adventure and victory."

Bottom line: Don't give up, but don't forget it is ultimately God who changes all of us, and He will do the changing when He sees best.

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