– Secret Place Insights –
Dear One, I can’t promise it, but this essay may be the last of, or next to the last of, my sorrowing essays about having had a knee replacement. BUT it isn’t actually about that… It is about the breathtaking, heartwarming way God reminds us of how in touch, in tune, He is with us, His children.
For me, He did so at the conclusion of my second, long-established, but abandoned, quiet-time which followed my surgery. It seemed I had to get off Norco, and over the worst of the pain, before I could rise and shine. Rising had become a rise and whine time.
So many years ago, but sometime after God had called me into discipleship and writing, I asked Him, “Lord, how can I possibly keep up with what you are asking of me?” Isn’t it odd, how we ask God a question, then go about life, and are totally taken by surprise when He answers? Oh we of little faith. When His answer came, it was, “Get up at 5:00.”
At that time, it was obvious, that if I was to be obedient to God’s callings, I could not neglect my time with Him, for apart from Him I had little or nothing of value to share. And I knew from experience that when I sat down to be alone with Him later in the morning, something usually interrupted my prayers, reading, or listening. Oh, on listening…it was not until I began giving at least an hour to quiet-time that I stepped into the previously unknown ‘listening part’ of sitting with God…so wondrous. When I do manage to make the five-o’clock time, I only end it because the time has come when I must get on with daily life. I leave reluctantly, if I were a child, I might leave kicking and screaming.
After my operation, life changed drastically. I was no longer serving, I was being served. Though grateful for the care, I was quietly depressed, miserable and ashamed of my attitude.
The day came that I FINALLY rose at 5:00. The next day, I did the same. There I poured out my complaining heart about the seemingly wasted weeks. Then, on that second morning, as I was about to leave,, I hurriedly reached up and took down volume two of a three volume set of The Christian in Complete Armour by William Gurnall, first published in 1655.
I did not page through the book; I quickly opened it. It opened to this, “If a servant of Christ could choose any affliction, he would select everything else before he would endure the pain of being a broken instrument, unserviceable to God. A devoted servant values his life by the opportunities he has to glorify God.”
Out of 398 pages, there it was, in words…my feelings, the source of my groaning. I breathed a deep sigh of relief. My misery came, not from what I perceived as a bad attitude. All that time that I was, for the most part, silently complaining – I was ashamed. And here God was showing me… that the real source was love for Him! I could live with that…thank you, very much. God knows us better than we know ourselves. And miracles of miracles, He still love us!
“For all things are for your sakes, that grace,
having spread through the many, may cause
thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.”
11 Corinthians 4:15
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