Monday, September 12, 2011


Before I even started my "prayer journal", I was having serious problems with some scriptures.  Of course, I'm not the only one who hasn't understood the whole predestination thing.  It's something the church has argued and split up over since the beginning.  And just like any other subject that is difficult or contradictory in the Bible, you'll have books and sermons that give the pat answers that "explain" it.  So I bought a book about predestination.  Ugh.  I asked some Christian "experts" what they thought.  Double ugh.  No "explanation" explained anything...the arguments just always went in circles.  I absolutely could not get around the scriptures that said so clearly that God does the choosing. ( You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. John 15:16...just to name one) If God does the choosing, then how can he condemn those he doesn't choose? 

Alongside this frustration was the guilt I felt for having a good life, when my best friend had such a difficult life.  And it wasn't like her difficulties where because she made bad choices.  These were difficulties that were completely out of her control...out of any one's control.  Except God.  But how could a loving God choose not to heal a child, or choose that a child be born with an abnormality at all?  I couldn't believe God would make this choice, so my only other alternative was to believe that these things are out of His control.  He created egg and sperm to meet, but after that...well, the chips will fall as they may.  This theory of mine may have let God off the hook, but ultimately it made God to be quite indifferent and weak.  And it left me distant from Him.  But at least I was still wrestling, because I wanted closeness.  So I started my "S-O-A-P" devotionals.  (scripture/observation/application/prayer)  I was also given a book that would be the beginning of a great transformation in my thinking, "The Satisfied Heart: 31 Days of Experiencing God's Love."  I'll end with one of my journals from when I was reading it.

S) He who trusts in the Lord, Loving-kindness shall surround him. (Loving-kindness=mercies, kindness, steadfast love; such a tender, compassionate word) (Ps. 32:10) His joy is in those who reverence Him; those who expect him to be loving and kind.
O) I'm starting to believe that my relationship with God is important to Him, not just something for my benefit.  He desires my company (so hard to accept!) and when I'm understanding His character; that is, believing He really is loving and kind (expecting it) this brings him joy.  He wants me to feel His love (always) and when I do, it makes Him happy.  This blows my mind!
A) I want to spend time with God everyday--not out of guilt--this is so new! But because I want to feel His love (who wouldn't?) and because I want to give God joy.  To think I could give God anything worthwhile, much less joy, is utterly mindblowing! 
P) Please make my faith stronger--and I'm understanding now what faith is.  It's simply believing you love me.  I want to take hold of as much as I possibly can.  I am so excited about being loved by you!