Wednesday Word 2.15.2017
Proverbs 3:5-6 New International Version (NIV)
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
In March, 2010 Pastor Joe asked me if I would like to write a midweek message reflecting on the previous Sunday’s scripture reading. I chose this passage for my very first “Wednesday Word.” This is one of my guiding life scriptures. A life scripture is a spot in The Bible that hits you right between the eyes. It is as though the words were written just for you. It irrevocably changes your life. No matter how many times you hear it or read it, the impact is just as deep. I’ll try to tell you why.
At eighteen, a virtually unknown illness nearly took my life. Not only did I survive against all odds, but I recovered in a fraction of the time predicted. I knew unequivocally who was responsible for my recovery. I spent the next twenty five years trying to figure out why.
With each misstep or poor choice, the guilt I felt over my failings grew and grew. I felt that surely I had let God down. How could I possibly be forgiven when, of all people, I should have lived my life with exemplary behavior? After all, I had been spared while so many others are taken. How could I be so ungrateful and so self-centered to have left God behind?
I may have left God, but He never left me. He kept tugging on my heart until I came back to church. I needed to find answers. Little by little, the truth about who God is and who I am began to come into focus. The child who laid in the darkness and knew her life was in God’s hands had gotten it right. The woman who thought she was supposed to take over and be in control got it terribly wrong. The woman who tormented herself over every mistake forgot that she wasn’t the one who decided about grace and mercy. That would be God.
This passage stays with me. It is beside my bed. It is on my desk at the office. It is written in my heart. All those years that I thought I had to figure it all out, I had to be perfect in order to be loved and forgiven, I was leaning totally on my own understanding. Now, I lay down my weakness, I lay down my fears and I am learning to trust God more and more every day. Just like that child near the edge of death, I must remember that I am in the hands of Almighty God. I must remember to submit to him, to acknowledge him in everything I do. When I forget, I have troubles. When I remember, I find peace of mind. God’s generosity is amazing…something to pray about.
Your sister in Christ,