Monday, September 1, 2014

I Am My Father's Daughter, Part 5


     Wallowing left me in more sin.  Instead of raising myself, brushing off the dirt, and trying again...I laid there, in defeat...Just as Satan wanted me.

     When I was walking with my Lord, I was a willing child in His hands.  I would invite family, and friends, to church.  I tried sharing with others, how wonderful Jesus was/is!  I was seeking to wait, for the man God would send to marry me.  I wanted God's best for my life.
     I wanted to be a testimony for Him.  I wanted to live in constant communication with Him.  I wanted God's heart.
     Apparently, I did not realize how much Satan detested me, because of God.  He is intelligent, and knew what would lure me away from holiness with the Lord.

     I still remember, a very particular evening.  I had been in communication with a friend (at the time), again.  We had lost contact, when I moved my senior year, to another school district.  Wanting to catch up, I found this friend.
     I was to meet them, at a local "hole-in-the-wall" joint, near them.  They wanted me to listen to a band, (of whom I knew one member), play.  I was hesitant, for I already knew my weakness for wanting to fit in (having given myself to try hard liquor, previously; as well as other lewd behavior) with my "friends."
     I was filling up my gas tank, when I had a strong urging to call them, and reschedule a visit.  I was searching my mind for another route of meeting together.  I strongly wanted to avoid going to the bar, but was fearful of the tauntings, as in time past.  Instead of calling to decline, I fought the Holy Spirit's prompting, and drove on my way.
     It was not long, and I was involved in ways of unrighteousness, that still grieves me.  It definitely grieved God's Spirit, who was within me!
     This time, I was humiliated, but would not share it with anyone.  I just kept going downward, for I was already defeated.  I bought into Satan's lies.
     And yet!, God was not about to give up on me!  I may have given up on myself, but the One who died for me, had not given up on me!  Praise God for His love!

     When I started missing church services, people tried to check in on me.  Those acts would prick my heart.  Sometimes, I would yield to the Holy Ghost's prompts, and go back to church.  I would try to kick habits I had started, that were wrong.  I would try to be nice to, but distance myself from, the wrong crowds.
     Satan picked back up his attacks.  Luring me, teasing me, whatever he needed to do, and with whomever he wanted to use, he would seek to drag me down.  Back and forth, back and forth, became my life.
     Finally, I stopped fighting.  I became immobilized.  It was not that I had forgotten who God was, or what He had done for me.  I just became exhausted.
     So, God let me lay there.  He was always present, and that I knew right well.  He did not give up on convicting me, or chastising me.  However, I had some lessons that needed learning.

     When I would not repent, where I was currently located, He moved me (and my lost husband) thousands of miles away.  Too many distractions.  Too immature, and weak.
     Those Christian folks, that had stayed in my life (though, at a distance), were fearful for me.  They thought it was a very bad idea, for us to move.  They did not believe it was in my best spiritual health, to go to a place, where a strong, spiritual life would not be cultivated.  Oh, but God knew best!

     Once we arrived to his hometown, it did not take long for homesickness to set in my heart.  All the people, to whom I had attached while wayward, were too far away.  Life moved on without me, over there.  No one with whom to attach myself, in our new place.
     Dear and I had only been married for one year.  I had married a lost man.  Our marriage was already rocky.
     He tried to cheer me up, by adopting a puppy...Then, another one (that we had to give back, because of their bickering).  He encouraged me to get a job:  to find friends.  So, I did.
     However, the job did not last.  The pleasure of the puppy did not take away the loneliness.  In that loneliness, God spoke to me.  He finally had the quiet He desired in my life, to get my attention...Without distraction.

     He reminded me of our times together, in the past.  How sweet they were!  He reminded me that my life would stay miserable, and only get worse, if I did not come back to Him.
     I thought, briefly, of the sinful pleasures I would be relinquishing, for Him.  Was I willing to forgo flesh, for spirit?  I had been pleasing the flesh for some time, in spite of the Lord's chastening and conviction.  It was not a willing captive.
     Oh, but my spirit yearned for God's sweet fellowship!  I wanted my flesh to be in submission to my God, so that my spirit could sweetly walk with Him, once again!  It did not take much time, to persuade me!
     On my knees I went, crying out to God, confessing all.  I repented of all that I had done.  I did not want to be a "yo-yo" Christian, any more.
     It pained me to know that I had grieved Jesus so much.  I was devastated.  Yet, I knew that there was hope.  I knew He would set me straight!
     My husband was not thrilled.  Though God had been working on him, since we met (and probably before that time), he was not happy.  When I came home from church services one night, I was so refreshed and excited!  It had been too long a time, of me forsaking the assembly.
     Since Dear had not attended this church service with me, he was waiting for me when I got home.  My joy did not come from him.  He was not the source of my delight.  It very much angered him.
     He would not attend church with me, for a few weeks.  Finally, he came one night.  It was not long after that, that he was born again!  Since then, we both have been walking with the Lord, together.

     What would have happened, if God did not orchestrate our move?  What would have happened, had I not, finally, submitted to the Lord?  What would have been missed?
     Oh, the lessons I have learned.  Oh, the appreciation for Christ, that has grown!  Oh, the eternal blessings that have come!
     I should have listened to God, when He prompted me, as I filled up the gas tank.  I should have listened to Him, every and any time.  I did not, and received the repercussions.
     Yet, even in the repercussions, I can see God's protection.  I can see His providence.  I can see how He still gets glory, even when I err.
      I wish I could tell every Christian, not to give in to temptation.  It is not worth it.  Christ deserves our best!  After all He has done for us, we need not treat Him so.
      I wish I could tell every Christian, who has given in to temptation:  "Go, make it right with God.  Don't sit in defeat!  Get up!  Get moving!  Don't let Satan keep you down!  You messed up?  Get cleaned up, then!  Don't give up!  Go to God!  He'll fix things!"  Satan cannot have our souls, if we are born again.  That does not negate the fact, that he wants to try and ruin our relationship and effectiveness for Christ.

No matter what, I am my Father's daughter.

Satan can try to cause trouble, but God will not let him have me.

God adopted me, and He is going to keep me.

He wants me.

He loves me.

He is my Abba, Father.

Oh, how grateful I am, too.

**Here are the links, to the other parts in this series:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

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"Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man." Colossians 4:6

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