Stay close to Me
Deuteronomy 5:29 Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me and always keep all My commandments, that it might be well with them and with their children forever!
Jeremiah 29:13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
God does not want us to be far away from Him. That is our choice. Our choice because we are convinced we know what is best for us, individually, and then later for others. We share our opinion/judgment with others, and because we are all unique, this sometimes creates a lot of dissension, maybe even hurt.
I am the oldest sibling, and have always felt I should be in charge. So I have bossed my opinion to my siblings. They do not have the same viewpoints I do all the time, so we sometimes bash heads, or ideas. Over time, I have come to realize that my opinions or choices are not necessarily theirs, nor should they be. We are unique, with different opinions, different values, different lifestyles, and yet, we appreciate one another.
For years, I lived believing I was in charge. I lived thinking I was in charge of my destiny, mistakes and good things, and I was therefore responsible for my son’s life, safety, destiny and his final outcomes. And, the negative part of this thinking was that I put tremendous pressure on myself believing I was responsible for the faults or failings of others. My stubbornness believed I was responsible for all outcomes, good and bad, made by me, my child, or siblings, sometimes, even the nurses I worked with.
I had accepted Christ’s invitation when I was 18, after hearing about Gideon’s summons from God to lead the Israelites into battle. Because Gideon doubted and could not picture himself as a leader, certainly not as God’s chosen, he sent up fleeces to determine if he was truly hearing God’s will for him. And thus, I learned about fleeces.
Initially, this was how I lived my life. I asked God questions that sounded like, “ok, God, if this….then that.” And then I waited for the answer according to my definition. I lived like that for a long while. But then after the ‘honeymoon’ period, I just settled in. I was not attending bible studies then, had no support system, so other than the women I worked with who were a few decades older than me, I had no companions.
Our marriage was not good. It certainly was not like the marriage my parents had which was loving and playful and obvious to others how close they were. My parents’ marriage had never been as strained and scary as mine. I knew things were very wrong, but had no idea how to fix it, or if it could be fixed.
Suddenly, I was a mother, and had more than myself to care about and worry over. After several months of tension and strain, I moved back to my parents, yet the fear remained. But I still lived via the results of fleeces whenever indecision or uncertainty made its presence known.
I was frightened, 21, the mother of a 6 month old, and had moved back with my parents, and now there were four generations living in the house. My sense of being in control was faulty and I had made so many mistakes which were affecting so many others. Although I believed in God, I certainly did not believe He was all powerful, all present, and always out for my best and the best for my son. He was not then the ALL that He is in my mind now…I had so much to learn.
But God, through my fleeces, initially, led me to move out. Oh, my parents had a lot of hesitation. I was living in my grandmother’s home since she was in a nursing home, but that placed me 30 miles closer to my ex. That created a lot of anxiety and apprehension for myself and my parents.
Fear was a fairly constant companion, and I feared all sorts of things. Was I a good mother? I’m going to school and working fulltime, how am I doing the best for my son? Will I ever have enough money to move us forward? Should I be doing both at the same time? He’s left with babysitters often; will he even know who I am?
But I had very good family and friends in my corner. A very good friend also started attending bible teaching church and recognized Jesus as her savior. She began leading me a bit further on my journey. Understand, I still had no real relationship with Jesus; I still relied on what came about with the fleeces, yet only sought when I was really stuck. I was not consistent with prayer or KNOWING Him, just sought reassurance I was making the right decision for a particular moment.
But finally this friend, said, “You need to move on. This is baby stuff– cheating using fleeces for everything.” At the same time, I had heard a sermon on tv urging to develop a relationship with Jesus, do my own digging in the bible, so I had to do more, delve deeper than relying on whether the fleece would be wet or dry. I also read that one cannot keep testing God. Aw-oh, certainly that is what a fleece is!
I agreed, but dreaded what would happen without my fleeces, my comfortable baby blanket. They had made me secure for a number of years. How would I know what God was saying without them?
But, I began to see more of how others saw me. I could be bossy—certainly to my son and my siblings. And I also was able to recognize that my ways, and what might be right for me and my life, were not necessarily right for them. I had begun to have my eyes opened and God was showing me that I am NOT in charge, and that my ways are not necessarily correct. And certainly my ways are not correct for others.
One of the absolute wonders of God is that He made us each unique; even twins, who have so much alike and similarities to one another, have their own thoughts, ideas, feelings, and ways of handling situations.
God wants us to walk according to His direction in our life, to know we belong to Him, to honor Him, to recognize and acknowledge He is in charge. We are not in charge. And, to me, life has become less stressful with Him at my side. I am no longer responsible thinking I am alone and “it’s” all on my shoulders alone. Now, I know it is not that way. His Word promises He is always with me and will help me. I believe it—I may not always feel that He is with me, but I know He is, because He has promised that.
It has helped me realize I am not responsible for others and their choices, and I can only make the best decisions for me with the knowledge I have and asking for His input so I don’t make mistakes. What a load that removes!
Thank You, God for Your presence, and for opening my eyes to realize I have no control over others, and I need just rely on You being with me and mybellaviews.