I am way too over tired these past two days that I know my emotions are lying on the surface. It is then that the enemy attacks. Someone shared something with me that on one hand should not cause much of a reaction at all, but I find myself dwelling there and I cannot seem to shake it. It was a “rejection” of something dear to my heart and something that has brought much freedom to me. I really don’t know why I am letting it bother me, because in the big scheme of things, it should be a non issue and more of a reflection on where this person is in their relationship to the Lord. After telling my husband that I was not going to take it personally, I find that I am. Whether it is due to being over-tired (my excuse) or not, I can not seem to shake this thing. I have employed taking my thoughts captive, thinking on those things that are of good report, praying, asking for His Grace to help me, meditating on scripture, walking through forgiveness, and repentance for how I am reacting, etc. I still cannot let it go. Here is what my devotions said today in My Utmost For His Highest by Oswald Chambers : Rev. 1:7 “Behold He cometh with clouds”
Notice it does not say He comes in the clouds, but with clouds. I never saw that before. Here is what He says:
“Clouds are always connected with God. It is by those very clouds that the Spirit of God is teaching us how to walk by faith.”
“God cannot come near without clouds, He does not come in clear shining.”
“It is not true to say that God wants to teach us something in our trials; through every cloud He brings, He wants us to unlearn something.”
God has been having me “unlearn” many things. Somethings were taught in my upbringing like: prejudice, self-righteousness, pride, judgment. Somethings I am “unlearning” were taught to me in church, but they are not the correct interpretation of His Word.
I think what He is trying to teach me to unlearn today is oversensitivity. I need thicker skin if I am to survive in ministry, but I can declare I have it all I want, but I really don’t. Things bother me. People bother me. Sin bothers me. Hatred bothers me. Ridicule and accusation bother me. I do not know how to unlearn these things.
Oswald goes on to say:
“His purpose in the cloud is to simplify our belief until our relationship to Him is exactly that of a child-God, and my own soul, other people are shadows. Until other people become shadows, clouds an darkness will be mine every now and again.”
“There is a connection between the strange providence of God and what we know of Him, and we have to learn to interpret the mysteries of life in the light of our knowledge of God. Unless we can look the darkest, blackest fact full in the face without damaging God’s character, we do not yet know Him.”
“Is there anyone ‘save Jesus only’ in your cloud? If so, it will get darker; you must get to the place where there is ‘no one any more save Jesus only’.”
I find this comforting in one sense because Jesus is in this “cloud” with me, but I don’t yet know how to make those who come against me to be nothing but a “shadow”. How do you unlearn an emotional response to rejection. On one hand I count it all joy to be persecuted for my faith, but on the other hand I experience loss and grief.
Maybe all I need is a good cry and a really, really good nights sleep, but I am definitely battling something bigger than myself here, so I covet your prayers.
God, I need you to be my Mighty Fortress and my Defender and Protector today. Your child is weak, but not crushed. Persecuted but not abandoned. Pressed down, but not destroyed. This battle is yours!