I am beginning to realize how much of my walk with God is dependent on my heart's response to what I know God to be. I have told myself millions of times, "I know that He has a purpose in the pain," or "I know that He loves me deeply." Yet, my heart response doesn't quite line up with my thought response.
I act in ways that show I still feel a need to control the circumstances because (in my heart) I'm not quite to the point of fully trusting His faithfulness. I also act in ways that show I still feel a need to prove my worthiness to be loved, and then I feel completely guilty when I don't measure up.
Well, the truth is that I will NEVER be in complete control or worthy of love on my own. It's God that is in control of my life, and it is God who makes me worthy of love.
The past year has been the most trying of my life and the life of my family. Although I cannot see all of the purpose that God has for the pain quite yet, my faith has grown by leaps and bounds. God has shown Himself to be faithful to me, even when I am showing by my actions that I am the most undeserving, unbelieving doubter completely unworthy of His faithfulness.
Now, when I am in need of provision that seems hopeless, my head response is the same (God will provide!!) but my heart response and my subsequent actions are very different. My faith is stronger. When I pray, I remember the faithfulness He has shown despite the doubting, and I find that my heart, mind, and actions line up (most of the time) in saying "Yes, He WILL take care of me."
Could this be part of the greater purpose of trials and times of waiting on God to act? To increase and strengthen faith rather than decrease and destroy?
Is my faith my grateful response to God's faithfulness??
I am grateful for this strengthened faith, and I am even more grateful for God's faithfulness. I am finding the small purposes in the pain and the big purpose of my faith in God. I know in my walk I will go through more ups and downs of faith, but I hope I will always remember God's faithfulness in times when I feel faithless... and may my heart response be one of faith strengthened by the remembering.
I am still counting the gifts, from 1 to 1,000... and I'm more than halfway there!! Here are some of the God gifts from the past week:
523... Eating sherbet in our "fort"
525... Shapes made by sparklers, captured in the camera
526... Morning sounds of the farm
527... Vibrant red cardinal, head cocked in listening
529... Baby frog, smaller than my finger tip
531... Exercising and giggling with little sister
532... Rainy day nap
535... Visiting Uncle David's studio
536... Inspiration found in imperfection
539... Uncle David's childhood stories, vivid portrayals of another time, place, and person
541... A day at the water park with dear family
542... Picnics and cupcakes
545... Sweet, sweet tea
547... Mowing the lawn (my first time ever!)
550... Golden Darcy, sweetly curled on the quilt
558... Answered prayers, proof of God's faithfulness
Will you join me in living a full life of thanksgiving?
For more lists of gifts, hop on over to Ann's blog!