Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hope. Desire. Trees. And Riches.

Proverbs 13:6,12: Righteousness keeps him that is upright in the way: but wickedness overthrows the sinner… Hope deferred makes the heart sick: but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life. I think a reoccurring thread throughout out Proverbs is that, as I continue to please God in my journey, He will order things to fall into place for my good. I can SO identify with verse 12. How many times in my life have I thought I could see the light at the end of the tunnel but then it ends up being a dead-end instead? Talk about stomach-churning heart-break. I think back to being a teenager and having my heart broken over a boyfriend and realize that as an adult, that heart-sick feeling comes back again and again when it comes to other relationships, job situations, family struggles, and… well, just plain life circumstances. My prayer today is really just begging God to see my desire. For the most part, it’s not even something that can be put into words. But it’s there and He gets it. And so I’m pleading with Him for some kind of resolution. Some kind of fulfillment. My heart is sick over the feeling of hopelessness. The feeling that my desire is unheard and uncared for. When the desire comes, it is a tree of life. I look forward to that.
Verse 7: There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches. This was confusing to me! I usually love to read the King James Version. I think it’s so beautiful. But I do struggle with the wording from time to time. =) I had to look it up in about 7 translations and then in a commentary. Matthew Henry’s commentary on this verse was: “Some who are really poor, trade and spend as if they were rich: this is sin, and will be shame, and it will end accordingly. Some that are really rich, would be thought to be poor: in this there is want of gratitude to God, want of justice and charity to others. There are many hypocrites, empty of grace, who will not be convinced of their poverty. There are many fearing Christians, who are spiritually rich, yet think themselves poor; by their doubts, and complaints, and griefs, they make themselves poor.” I can see that my perspective of my condition will lead me to success or failure. My outlook on my circumstances actually leads me to riches or poverty. Perspective has so much to do with it. I don’t mean that if I think it, it will happen. What I mean is that my situation is only as bad as I choose to view it. There, that makes more sense.

Honesty. Integrity. And a Crown.

I haven’t had the time to put this in writing until now, but on Monday as I read Proverbs 11, the truth that shone brightest to me is that God delights in honesty. Here I stand at a personal crossroads. And my crossroads is not a matter of decision-making. But rather, it’s a matter of the doors of my own desire being closed. The closed doors are breaking my heart. I want to use manipulation and tantrums to create my own way, but I know that if I can just manage to practice patient faith, God will open doors and windows in His own perfect time. Woven throughout the fabric of Proverbs 11, I’m seeing that honesty and integrity… right living… will lead to success. Manipulation and anger ultimately leads to failure.

Yesterday I dove into Proverbs 12…

A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband –verse 4. I sure don’t feel virtuous. I left my children to go to back to work. Albeit against my will, I have disarranged God’s natural order of a mommy being home with her small children. So this is one, I guess, that I have to wrap my head around. My prayer this week has been: “God, teach me how to be virtuous in this time in history. When Proverbs was written, the picture of a virtuous woman was painted as the lady hanging clothes on the line while her children ran around playing in the field. After that, she scrubbed the floors, baked bread, and taught her children Hebrew. Teach me to make this relevant to now. My present day. My 2010.” A crown to my husband. Sounds like the writer’s term for a trophy wife. Lol. I get it though. I need to work on being the kind of woman my husband is happy to have around. What husband feels rewarded when he is forced to put up with a bitchy wife? There is another verse in this same book which teaches that a screeching, nagging woman should be put in the attic. Lol. I hope he wouldn’t rather put me in the attic, but not only that... I want him to be pleased. Excited. And proud to have me around.

Verse 16 states that A fool's wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covers shame. I thought this was so interesting. I read Matthew Henry’s commentary on it which explains that “It is kindness to ourselves to make light of injuries and affronts, instead of making the worst of them.” I love this. It annoys me to no end to hear someone talk about an incident, exaggerating the details to make themselves appear the martyr. Lol. It must annoy God too.

But on a more serious note, I wonder how my grumblings look to my Creator. He loved me even before I was conceived. He has been with me for every moment of 37 years. He knows about every situation in which my heart was broken. He knows about every little inconvenience that has come into my life. He knows about every single blessing that has shaped who I am. And I am sure that when I complain, He must be thinking, “Really? She thinks THAT is so bad?!” This morning, I was in a hurry and had no time for coffee. It felt like a terrible start to my morning. Even my facebook status was “I’m in a bad mood today” and I blamed it on my lack of coffee. God must be laughing or He may even be disgusted with me. Then I hear about the earthquake in Haiti and my heart breaks. How can I think I have any room to complain?

Monday, January 11, 2010

My destination is sure though my journey remains uncertain.

So, I’ve taken on a new challenge. After watching “Julie and Julia” on Saturday and then sitting in church on Sunday, a challenge was laid on my heart to begin a new venture. I’m at a crossroads in my life that leaves me in a combination of brokenness and confusion. I’m not entirely sure what is next but I have to believe that God’s in this thing and He has it all worked out ahead of time. I’m so nearsighted that I can’t possibly imagine what’s down His sleeve, but I know it must be in my best interest.

My personal challenge is to tackle God's Word's relevance to life with fresh eyes …the eyes of a brand-new, needy, thirsty, eager, 30-something wife and mother. And for personal growth and accountability, I’ll use this blog to journal my findings. For my sake alone. I don’t know if this will ever be read. I don’t know why anyone would want to read it. But it’s here. And it’s honest. It’s straightforward. Nothing flowery. No pretenses. I’m just on a mission to figure out this thing called life.

And so begins the view from my window. My somewhat skewed view. The musings of an ordinary heart on an ordinary journey toward an extraordinary end.