but it feels like the more I am willing to serve God,
the greater my faith and trust is stretched.
I knew when I said "Yes!" to greater service and responsibility for the Lord
that I would be tested, tried and even tempted.
I won't tell you it has all been fun, it hasn't.
But I was not promised fun.
I won't tell you it has all been easy, it hasn't.
But I was not promised easy.
I won't tell you it has all been simple to understand all that is happening, it hasn't.
But I was not promised understanding.
Here is what I feel:
I feel like I came to God
and unworthy for service.
I feel like over the last 4 or 5 years
He has given me ways to become more fit for service.
In my head,
this is the exchange and the mental picture
between me and God:
Me: "Father, I love you. I love to be and serve where you are working.
I want to learn to be a better servant and citizen for your kingdom."
God: "Great! I would love that!! So here is the way this works....
Just step up here, that's right. Now let me open the lid."
Me: "You want me to step in here? How is that going to help me?"
God: "Trust me, it is going to be great. You are going to love the results.
This is one of my many methods that I use to train and mold my children
so that I can use them better."
Me: "Well, okay. I do trust you."
God: "So now what you need to do is step right into this tub."
Me: "Like this?"
God: "Yes, feet first. Now I am going to add some water."
Although I will pour it over your head, you will not drown.
This is the best way to begin to soften
those crusty places that need to come off.
Just sit and soak a while.
You will see what I mean."
Me: " Oh Yeah, this is not too bad.
It's kinda relaxing, soothing.
Okay, I can stay here."
God: "Alright, now that we have that step down,
I am going to add some powdered soap.
I am just going to sprinkle it around in the water.
This will help to clean up all those little crevasses, dirt, grime
and really anything that may be attached to you that should not be there."
Won't that get in my eyes?
Won't that irritate my skin?
How much soap are you going to use?"
God: "As much as it takes to do the job"
Me: "Hmm, I think I liked the water soaking better.
Won't that eventually work?"
God: "No, it is just the beginning.
If I left you to just soak,
you would become too soft, bloated and unusable."
Me: "Well, I definitely want to be usable.
So how long do I have to stay in this soapy water?"
God: "I don't think it will be too long.
My timing is perfect."
Me: "Great! I am already getting comfortable with the soapy water.
It's not too bad.
A little irritating, but I can handle it.
Anything to help me become someone you can use."
God: "Of course.
Now that we have those two steps in place,
I am just going to push this little red button. Are you ready?"
Me: "Ready for what!"
God: "For what I have for you next."
Me: "What is it?
What is going to happen?
What do I need to do?
How long will this take?
What is it going to feel like?
When will it be over?"
God: "Trust me, it is going to be great.
I have it all under control.
You just need to stay in the water."
Me: " Oh, okay."
God: "Here it goes,
I am pushing the button now.
Just stay in the water.
No jumping out until it is complete."
God: "You can do it!
I am still right here.
I am not going anywhere.
I plan to stay here until it is complete."
Me: "I am so dizzy!
I keep loosing sight of you when I spin this way and that way!"
God: "Just listen to my voice when you can not see me.
I am still here."
Me: "Okay! But this is harder than I imagined.
Are you sure this is the only way?"
God: "This is the only way, for you my dear child.
When this cycle is over, you will be fit to do what I have in mind for you."
Me: "I will try to keep trusting in your ways,
even when I don't understand.
Please give me the strength to endure this process."
God: "I am all you need.
Focus on Me and My ways and you will be strengthened."
So, I have a bit
of an imagination.
I tend to
think in pictures.
Silly I know,
but it helps me
to make sense of things sometimes.
Right now, I am in the spin cycle.
Here is what I know:
Our Heavenly Father gives us what we need for the work He has for us to do.
Check out the Gospels, it does not matter which one.
Matthew, Mark, Luke, John.
They all tell stories of men who had no experience that were called
to follow God's son as He went about His Fathers business.
They learned on the job, so to speak.
Jesus was constantly teaching them, coaching them, admonishing them
and preparing them for the work that they would have.
Work while He was with them physically
and work they would be totally equipped to do when He departed.
He did not leave them all alone.
He sent the Holy Spirit to guide them, remind them
and encourage them to press on and
continue to tell a dying world about Jesus' saving faith.
So what does this have to do with my current spin cycle?
It has everything to do with it.
Others have been here before
I am not alone
I have Gods word
I have the Holy Spirit
I have my sister's in the faith
I have my community
All this to help me to stay in the water.
as I am washed, shaped and made useful.