Sunday, March 9, 2014

Moving Forward

It’s been a while since I’ve written something about my journey. If you’ve followed my posts at all, you know I’ve been at the bottom of a dark valley. I’ve decided it’s time to write again in the hopes of turning a new page in the book of my life and taking that next step toward higher ground. Here is my story:

I loved a boy more than anything. But he didn’t love the Lord, so God asked me to give him up (1 Corinthians 7:39, 2 Corinthians 6:14). I obeyed, but I still loved this boy and his soul, though not with perfect love. I spoke truth to him. I prayed for him daily. I fasted. I found him a church, which he attends. I bought him a bible, which he reads. I swallowed my pride and humbled myself that he might one day come to love the Lord more than anything, too. I say these things so you will know how much I was invested. So you can understand how much it hurt when he took the things I gave him and gave them to someone else. Add to the heartbreak the fact that, as far as I know, he still does not love Jesus with all his heart and soul.

I asked the Lord: where is my justice? Or at least some closure. What’s wrong with me, God? Am I that unlovable? And why must I suffer for obeying you? Not me!

This is the answer I received: how much am I worth? Am I still worth everything you received on August 31, 2012?
But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. Philippians 3:7-8
He also brought to mind 2 examples of suffering for obedience: Paul the Apostle and Jesus Christ. Paul obeyed the Lord and as a result he went without food and sleep, he was put in chains and imprisoned, beaten numerous times and left for dead. But he was still able to write the verse above. Jesus obeyed the Father and he suffered unto death the ultimate punishment of all humanity.
I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3:10-11
So there is some comfort in the midst of this pain by realizing that I am becoming more like Christ, that I share in his suffering as I continue to know him better. There is hope of life after pain. Let me also add that I have in no way reached the top of the mountain yet. This valley is real and I’m a work in progress, but like Paul went on to say:
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:12-14
I now strive to forget what is behind and move forward. It’s a day by day struggle, sometimes minute by minute. I wait on the Lord. And I wonder: what is in store for me?