Thursday, February 23, 2012

The joy of those who trust the LORD

Oh, the joys of those who trust the LORD…O LORD my God, you have done many miracles for us. Your plans for us are too numerous to list. If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds, I would never come to the end of them. Psalm 40:4-5

I know that God is at work in my heart because I am beginning to find joy in trusting the LORD. In my experience, trusting God usually involves crying your eyes out, begging, pleading, finally becoming quiet and still and then saying, "OK God, I choose to trust You." Even after making that important choice, I often feel defeated as though I was fighting God and He won. I am also tempted to fear that God is not really going to provide for me and to think that I should probably create a backup plan just in case. I feel joy when the LORD does provide, along with that great sense of relief, knowing that He really does care for me and follow through on His promises to me. But, I also feel guilty at that point, knowing that I should have trusted God all along and wanting to condemn myself for not doing that. I think, "Why can't I just take God at His word and trust in His faithfulness and goodness toward me?!"

I am finding that I have to trust God a lot in this new season of my life. I am steadily gaining clients, but discovering how slow the collection process from insurance companies is. I find that I am praying specifically over my bills and asking God to bring in the funds to cover them one by one.

But, I am also finding that I have a lot more joy. I am at the House of Prayer 5 days a week and I absolutely love it! God tenderizes my heart with His love during these hours of studying the Bible, praying and worshipping. He gives me divine ideas to use with my clients and affirms my identity in Him. God sends me out afterwards with an overflowing heart and it is from that place that I go to work as a professional counselor, connect with my friends and family and live my life. It feels easier to trust Him because I feel deeply loved by Him.

Please let me assure you that I am still slogging through all of my broken places and sin issues in partnership with Jesus, lest you think that I am living some kind of perfect life. I still have unfulfilled longings and unanswered prayers. I am tempted to agree with fear on a daily basis. It is such a familiar spirit to me that I don't always notice right away when fear has sidled up to me and started whispering in my ear. The Holy Spirit has been so faithful to call this to my attention whenever it happens and He gives me the strength and courage to say "NO!" to fear and "Yes!" to His love. He is also faithfully leading me on this journey of uncovering deeper rooted and hidden areas of fear that I still harbor in my heart. What is different now is that I have begun to feel and believe in His love for me and His enjoyment of me during this journey. It is the warmth and comfort of His constant affection that enables me to break free of fear's death grip and replace my hand in His.

My heart overflows with a good theme; I address my verses to the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer. You are fairer than the sons of men; Grace is poured upon Your lips; Therefore God has blessed You forever. Psalm 45:1-2