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No Surprise

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.” 1 Peter 4:12

Definitely a go-to verse for me. I have to remind myself over and over that struggles are the norm not a strange thing here on earth. I think it’s because when there is an absence of strife or conflict it feels so free and easy to live out a good life full of love. And then gazing on the glory of Christ can make you feel invincible, like you’d gladly go to death for Him! And you so mean it when you say it too. The hard thing is death isn’t the hard part. Not really. Think about how many people you know who would likely say they’d die for you. Do they live for you? Of course not. Nor should they.

Not only are we supposed to give up our life for Christ, we are to give up our lives. There’s such a difference there. Giving up our lives means turning our will over to His. It means denying the flesh, dying to self everyday, refusing sin when it starts creeping in, turning away from the easy road to take the high road and so much more. So dying in the name of God I think I can handle, but when I feel attacked or overwhelmed and Satan has me in his sights I find living for Christ so much harder. I KNOW the victory is won and yet I can still doubt & waiver in my emotions or in my thoughts. 

I tend toward despairing. I hate that about myself. Self-pity can slide in almost unnoticed. I have to fight it. I feel the hurt in my heart swell and threaten to swallow me up. This is how my heart got so hard. I have never known how to fight hurt without protecting myself from it happening again. I have to build a wall. I have to go inside of myself, nurse my wounds and hide away.

But Jesus.

Instead of letting this new hurt bring back all the old hurt and take me back down this road I am refusing to stay there. I have resolved to move past it. I have learned from this. I will grow from this. I do not have to let this person have any power in my life or drag me down with them. My sympathy is not wasted, it simply shows I have a kind-heart. I can leave this situation following God to His purpose in it. I am no one’s savior nor am I expected to be. I have tried. Probably more than I should have. I can let it all go in peace.

That’s what my mind is proclaiming right now but I know I cannot do this in my own strength. I will return to praying over it all and trust the Lord to fight for me. I will look away from this and turn my eyes to Him, only to Him. I will be still.

So I cried it out, wrote it out and opened my Bible up randomly and asking God to speak to me He gave me Psalms 69:20-30.. and as I read through all the wishes for thine enemies I felt my heart say “No, God, I don’t wish this. I don’t want to hurt them I just want freedom from my hurt” and I came to the end of the page where it read:

“But I am afflicted and in pain; let your salvation, O God, set me on high! I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.” 

And that’s exactly what I intend to do.

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