Dear readers… I am excited to introduce some sweet friends who are lending their voices for the next couple of weeks as I rest my brain from another concussion. God may just be forcing a recovery period, some slow down time that I have been resisting. Not that I think that bus that hit me was directed by a holy hand but you know what I mean. Still, this gives me a chance to show off what wonderful people I am surrounded by, the writers I interact with on a regular basis. Show them some love, will ya?
Guest post by Kevin Parish
Have you ever found yourself questioning why you react or reacted certain ways to situations or persons? Of course you have! We all have. It’s a great part of what makes us who we are and how others see us. On one hand it can be considered as a badge of honor, good character, admirable… This is the feel-good, sticky sweet side of ourselves we attempt and strive to achieve…Yes? Yes! On the other hand you may find yourself questioning every action, feeling judged, as well as self-judging, not only by the actions of today but all the actions of yesterday. How do we find release and solace from those events that mold us into misshaped clay? How do we remodel ourselves into a new shape before our pliability succumbs to hardening? Lamentations 3:40 tells us “Let us examine and probe our ways, And let us return to the LORD.” Well, that seems simple enough and straight forward. Oh my friend… It’s easier said than done! This brings me to the point and title of this expose`. Are we being patient and letting the Lord guide our ways, or are we a patient in need of healing and spiritual guidance? It’s a study in self…
The waters that have traversed beneath the bridge of my life have seen beauty, love and kindness, and the miracle of being a parent and grandparent all with God at the center. The exalted times of being a healer and trusting that God is in charge makes for smooth sailing… most of the time. Let’s not forget we are often tested during these times too ¹(James 1:12). Then there are those times, more than I care to recall, where the waters were turbulent and seemingly drowning in their passing. Those times where I let go of God and made the meager attempt to be in control. Though I made it through, by His grace, I still flinch at the thought of some of those actions. I was neither patient nor a patient. I was simply lost in the world and part of the world. I was living in the world as a man, and not living in the world as a man with God in his heart. Material things made me into someone I cringe to reflect upon even now ²(Mark 4:19). But there is light…
The time came when I simply gave up and gave in. Upon my knees with reverence to Him in whom I was to ask forgiveness and pour out my deepest, heartfelt apology and beg for Him to take over I found solace. I found that is okay to be scarred and scared. I discovered a healthy way to be self-judging without being judgmental. I found that giving my whole self to God, not just a small piece but all of me, I could move beyond the sucking abyss that had trapped me in the past and lead me into deeper waters. Here, now, I can stand and be proud of who I am and who is responsible. It isn’t me… It never was… It is in Jesus Christ my Lord and savior who endowed me with strength to ask for forgiveness and provide forgiveness when I slip into the snare of reaction without His guidance. I can be patient, and I can be a patient. “It is well with my soul!”
¹James 1:12 – Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.
² Mark 4:19 – …but the worries of the world and the delight of being rich and all the other passions come in to choke the word; so it proves unfruitful.