There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. He brought us to life using the true Word, showing us off as the crown of all his creatures. (James 1:16-17, The Message translation)
All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing!
I have a reason to worship!
I will bring praise!
I will bring praise!
No weapon formed against me shall remain!
I will rejoice!
I will declare!
God is my victory and He is Here!
(Desert Song, Hillsong)
The Fall semester, back to school, a return to routine is upon us and for most of us it is welcomed with great delight! When something unexpected darts into our day without warning, and especially if we are already in a vulnerable state, it can send us into a downward spiral quickly. I had one of those days this week that went something like this:
6:20am Out of bed/And so another day begins……
7:30am Chloe to the bus
8:15am Arrive at work
3:00pm Early departure from work (ate lunch while I worked through to get the most hours I could in for the day and minimize use of personal time)
4:00-4:30pm Pick up my youngers (AJ and Chloe) from the bus stop
5:00pm Arrive at WHS and wait for Bailey to finish audition for school play
5:30pm Bailey finishes audition
*Here is where the day bit the dust: 5:30pm I was supposed to get everyone and be at WIS for AJ’s homeroom team meeting/orientation. Unfortunately circumstances beyond my control, Ryan being at night class and hungry children gnawing on day old leftover strawberry poptarts in the van resulted in this Mom simply coming to the end of herself and saying to God and to herself,
At this point in the evening, I was simultaneously ready to scream and collapse into a puddle of convulsing tears.
I work very hard every single day to keep it together for my family, for my job, for the sake of simply saying I accomplished a day---but the reality is, some days it breaks me. Some days I am able to hit a rhythm and ride through the day without much turbulence. Other days, I can claim a portion of the day as a victory, and hopefully coast on that the remainder of the day without incident. Some days are like the one I detailed above, and I am ready to stamp it and myself, “Failure”.
Do you see the deception?
You have a CHOICE. I have a CHOICE. ALWAYS, there is a CHOICE. At any given time, life is going to hand us a big fat sour lemon. Guaranteed. So how will we choose to handle it?
I allowed that momentary deception, because of my reaction to circumstances outside of my control, to steer me toward a conclusion of “Failure”. The day was not a failure. I was not a failure. That moment was allowed to occur in God’s divine plan for my life, because He knows the outcome and He has the victory!
My mind, my heart, my hands will attempt to control and orchestrate my life day to day, but the Holy Spirit resides within me to keep me in check, to assure me when I choose Him, that regardless of how unpredictable life is, God has it all well in His hands. I don’t need to know it all, and I don’t want to know it all because I’m pretty sure if I did, I could not handle it.
We are deceived when we allow our circumstances to shape our perception. The Holy Spirit resides in each of us to always change that, re-set that. But we have to choose it! It is not automatic and it is not our nature. We are human, we are flesh, and so in spite of being children of God, we must practice holy habits. We must meditate on, study, speak His Word and pray, pray without ceasing, praise Him in all circumstances, and when we are hit by something difficult we must choose to stand and praise Him still!
I didn’t say it was easy, but it is necessary. To be like Christ, to be closer to holy like Him, takes practice, lots and lots of practice. So on our lesser than best days, we pick ourselves up and pull ourselves together, wipe the tears from our faces, stand up and stumble one step at a time through the mess before us and raise our hands in victory. You can do this. I can do this.
Be deceived no longer, my friend. Embrace His good and perfect will for you and trust He has made a way for you always.