Monday, September 20, 2010

Fight or Flight, Part Two

Here we go again with the part two.  It’s not that I plan ahead and think I should write a series.  It’s just that there is always more to say.  That’s why I am thankful for rollover minutes on my phone.

I was thinking more about quitting today.  There are lots of things that are easy to quit.  Phone contracts, banks, churches and jobs seem to be changed without a second thought.  When things get hard, uncomfortable or lose their thrill, we bail.  When we’re young it’s easy:  sports teams, paper routes, lab partners, piano lessons.  Even with parents that try to teach us commitments and follow through we can still choose to walk away.  Unless you’re one of my  children taking piano lessons – forget it. 

It’s not until I got older that I had things in my life important enough that it was not so easy to walk away.  Careers, college, relationships, marriage and parenting change the game.  The stakes are high.  The investment costs a lot.  The consequences are great.

So I guess through giving me these grown up commitments, God is teaching me an important lesson by giving me challenges I can’t or don’t want to abandon.  Even when it gets hard and I want to run away, it just isn’t that easy.

Why?  Because I need to grow up! 

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

Perseverance must finish its work; making me mature and not lacking anything.  We don’t get there by running at the first sign of hardship.  We don’t grow by giving up.  We don’t gain anything by seeking our own selfish pleasures.  Trials develop perseverance.

James goes on to give us the answer to what to do when we are living in fear, not faith and don’t know what to do. 

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does. James 1:5-8

When I am tempted to quit, all I need to do is turn to God and He will give me the wisdom I need.  He promises to be there for us.  Even on days that it seems the kids will not make it out the door without issues or tears.  When I wonder if it’s all worth it.  When I don’t know what to do.  That’s when God is working.  Ask Him for wisdom.  Fight the good fight of faith.  Perseverance must finish its work. 

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