It is always interesting to me when God allows something to happen in your life, and it is so bizarre later to make the connections and see how something so seemingly insignificant was being placed at precisely the moment on the timeline of your life where it serves the largest purpose. Lately a lot of things have been lining up for me as our family enters a season of great change. It is not just preparing for a physical move, but moving on from things in our lives that have been harmful and destructive, as well as physically, spiritually and emotionally crippling. I have felt much this week like a stranger and an alien. Many things I used to enjoy all seem quite empty and shallow now, and I feel a bit lost - unanchored, and at the same time, liberated and unfettered. I know Christ has set me free from the captivity of my own emotions - and I cling to the one who made me and knows intimately how I feel. I am not lost in Him.
About a week ago, I had a rather intense discussion with a friend wherein lay a disagreement. This friend is someone who I love dearly - and always will, but during this season, we are on different sides of a figurative fence. My friend's assessment because of our conflicting perspectives, was that we were going different directions - and her summation was that I was becoming "worldly". These words were stinging and have attempted all week long to make me bitter and resentful. However, when I get stuck right there in those feelings, I fail to utilize the opportunity for self-examination, and for the Lord to tell me what He has to say about me. It is His opinion that matters, and none other. He is the one who I must give an accounting to of my life. I accept that others may not always see things the way I see them, agree with me, or even understand my perspective. The irony is shortly before I entered into this time of trial in my life, not only with this particular friendship but virtually all of my relationships outside of my own family, the Lord had led me to begin reading Job. I am not suggesting that I am being persecuted, or even suffering at the extreme that Job was - but that I can identify with the position of having to stand under the accusations of others - even ones who have claimed to be your friends.
Always when someone says something about you that cuts, wounds, injures or maimes, there is a responsibility for the believer to examine these places in themselves where others have poked, pointed, jabbed and jeered to see if any validity is to be found in what is being said about you. I have asked God to show me - to walk me through these things and sift what I think to be true out of what He is showing me that His truth about me would prevail. It is hard, but refinement always involves a testing by fire. Lord, help me to stand in Your strength as mine has failed me. I know He will. I know He will.