Friday, September 7, 2012

I am trying

I have been trying so hard.

I have been trying so hard to focus and draw near to the Lord.  I've woken up some days, and instead of thinking about Him first thing the way I have for so long, I find myself halfway through my morning or even into my day and I realize I haven't thought about Him.  So I have tried, to focus, reach out, draw near, believing He would keep His promise and draw right back.

It has been a point of distraction, feeling like I need to go deeper, and feeling instead like I'm drifting.  It's like trying to swim into the ocean.  I want to go out past the wave where the water is deep, but I can't get past where they are crashing on the shore, or worse, they toss me back and knock me down hard.  Not only am I not making any progress but I even feel worse for the wear. 

But I have not given up.

Love & worship - I know that's the last thing I heard the Lord say. 

Worship is hard for me.  I try to focus and there are lists and questions running through my mind, or worse I get completely distracted by the sound of my own voice.  I long to look at the Lord, to seek His face (and not His hand) and I feel like I spiritual ADD. 

Love is hard for me.  I am easily frustrated.  I get annoyed by the masses, and all the individuals who are counted among them.  I get bugged by the guy who is driving too slow, or the woman who is standing too close.  I don't like sassy children and even my own irritate me when they demand too much of my time.  Sometimes I feel like there might not be a heart inside me at all.

I do love God, I love my Savior, I am grateful for what He has done for me, and yet constantly I forget.  I live my life like fool. 

I am trying to practice the "conscious presence of God."  He's here, with me now, even as I am typing.  He's with me when I'm stuck in traffic, running late, arguing with a loved one, losing my temper with my children- in every circumstance He is with me, present, VERY PRESENT. And yet I constantly forget.  No matter how much I don't want to or how desperately I try to keep my heart and mind set, I become completely distracted.

Bitterness.

Hurt.

Anxiety.

Confusion.

Lack of awareness.

These are the shadows that circle about trying to obscure the Light I am so desperately seeking.

These demons do not consume me, they are not where I lie my days, but they feel like they are ever chasing me, trying to bring me down.  Running from them is exhausting, even when I am trying so hard to run into the arms of my loving Father-- the One who I know is there, who I know loves me, of whose promises I am aware. 

Sometimes it feels like I run two steps further and He takes three steps back.  I know it's not teasing but rather stretching me to see I can go further than I know, but I so desperately long to fall into His embrace, and have Him whisper gently that everything is going to be ok.  Or better, that he would lift me up and move me into the place of security and peace.  I just want things to be better.

I know I'm not alone.  So many of us are struggling financially, people are out of work, families are falling apart, people are dying. How I long for God to just scoop us all up and take us home.  I want to live the life He intended to give us-- no sickness, no darkness, so sadness or death.  But it's not time.  It's not now.  But I wish He would move, move something, maybe move anything.  I wish He would change a circumstance, or change many circumstances, but that's not His concern.  He's more concerned with changing me.  Do you know how that feels? 

All I can do is keep going. Remember what He said, "Love and worship."  I don't fully understand what that means, but I know I haven't accomplished it, so I can't quit.  I am determined that I'm not going to settle for seeking to see God move.  I have to press on until I see God, because only then will any of this even make sense. 

3 comments:

JESSICA RENSHAW said...

Diana,
Reading your posts is like a sacred privilege, like looking into your most private heart and seeing there someone who is seeking after God with all her mind, soul, heart, spirit, and strength (even if you don't always think so).

You are running His race. As I read I think God is urging you on with great approval and eagerness: "Yes! Yes! Yes! You can do it! You're doing great!"

He says when you think you have lost your way and your focus and doubt your own heart, HE knows your heart (I John 3:19-20)and knows you thirst after Him as a deer thirsts for brooks of water.

He assures you He is pleased with you because you have a heart like David's, a heart after His own heart. And he delights in you, rejoices over you with shouts of joy. (Zeph. 3:17)

JESSICA RENSHAW said...

Brother Lawrence (The Practice of the Presence of God)says developing this habit of continual conversation with God took years before it became natural for him. Every time his mind wandered he just acknowledged that to God and resumed the conversation without beating himself up.

He tried to maintain it the best he could with "an act of praise, of adoration, of desire, resignation or thanksgiving" which he says pleases God greatly. Eventually he could not keep his mind off God, no matter what was happening around him, how chaotic things were.

But he said at first he kept having to take his mind captive almost by violence.

JESSICA RENSHAW said...

Diana,

Jesus Calling blessed me this morning: ". . . When your faith falters, you choose a path that meanders and takes you well out of your way. . .As soon as you realize you have wandered from your trust-path, look to Me and whisper, 'I trust You, Jesus.' This affirmation will help you get back on track.

"The farther you roam along paths of unbelief, the harder it is to remember that I am with you. Anxious thoughts branch off in all directions, taking you farther and farther from awareness of My Presence. You need to voice your trust in Me frequently."

So true! I needed that. Sometimes during the day I find myself just telling Him "Thank you. I love you. You take such good care of me." Even if I don't feel loving or thankful I think it grounds me to express those things by faith and I'm sure it honors and pleases Him.

I hope you have a great day. :o)