Wednesday, January 15, 2014

THIS is when the Tough stuff begins

The Calendar says January.  All of the wonderful Christmas celebrations with friends and family are finally over....the tree is packed up and all the decorations are down.  Yes, it is cold outside and snow is all around us.  It is more overcast than sunny and so the business of life getting back to normal contends with my soul.

However, my word for this year of 2014 is what am I to do?  I have to wonder if GOD gives us this season to rest and really search inside of ourselves.... to take stock of where we are with our walk with HIM.  And so I ask.... am I studying enough?  Is my devotion to HIM diligent enough? What is enough?  I hear HIM say in response: "BE STILL."

PSALM 42: 11 says: "Why are you downcast , O my soul?  Why so disturbed within me?"  I can't help but think that GOD works on your heart when you are least busy.....inner reflection is a hard thing sometimes. But if I am to be HIS servant, and bury my old self, then I must do this inner reflection and ask HIM to carve out of my heart what HE doesn't want there.  This is where the tough stuff begins....where I hold myself accountable to HIM, and NO ONE ELSE!  And with that I must look at my self and not compare myself with anyone either..  Comparison is always a losing I must look at who HE wants ME to be!

So I ask: is there too much pride?  Do I need to be more thankful?  Could I help others more?  What is enough?  The other night I woke up with the thought:  "with ME all things are possible."  GOD'S word is true!

When I think I fall short, and believe me that is every single day......HOPE sheds a new light on my downcast soul.  And GOD says: be "with ME."  It is a good thing to know that I am not alone in my reflection and that with HIM, HE will show me what I need to know if I seek HIM with my whole heart.

Knowing that HE will grow and mature me, better than I can all on my own, gives me that HOPE.  When I rest in this HOPE and pure TRUST of HIS mercy on me, then the outcome is pure JOY.

So my tough stuff is carried and when JESUS said: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest," HE is saying to us, that HE walks alongside us....and we are never alone.

Our GOD is a HOLY GOD.  We should come before HIM on our knees asking for HIM to help us be the people HE wants us to is a full surrender.....a trust.....a death of self, and a realization that HE gives those who ask for it a discernment in these issues of the heart.  

When I ask the tough questions of HIM, I trust that HE will eventually answer in HIS own way and not mine.  In that surrender I know that I am no longer in control, HE is.  My burden becomes a little lighter then, during this gloom and doom time of year.  HE guides me with HIS precious WORD....a word that gives me HOPE and then JOY!  No matter what I am going through, or what is around me I come to a place where I discover that JESUS is the JOY of my heart and I pray in this New Year, that I will embrace that fact!

I thank HIM then, for bringing me to and eventually through the tough stuff of life..... when HE does and HE always does..... then HE is my JOY.... a JOY that I will treasure all through eternity. 

PROVERBS: 2: 3 ".... and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of GOD."


  1. This is an excellent post, Max! It compelled me to keep reading forward.

    It is very important for us to be honest with God, and to truly seek Him, open-hearted (love the verse at the end!). In January we often begin with new goals, and we must wonder, did we ask God to write the goals for us? Did we consult His ways, or the ways of the world, when we formulated our plans? Are we chasing after our own glory, or His?

    I take great comfort in reminding myself of the truth that God cares for us far more than anyone else in the world, including ourselves. His will is for our good. What He desires from us, while it may be dying to self, is actually the path to eternal life!

    I also take great comfort in knowing that I am not the only one seeking the narrow way. As sisters in Christ, we can encourage each other as we all dare to work through the tough stuff.

  2. Max,
    This morning I was contemplating some things, and this post came to my mind again. I know I have been to this place in the past – the place of being brutally honest with myself and before God, daring to take the leap of faith, recognizing my need for God and courageously giving my life over to His control, upon realizing that my ways are not working for me. That happened the day I got saved.

    It is time for me to do this again. I discovered this morning that there are some things in my life that I need to get serious about. No more games. No more self-deception. No more excuses. This life is not a game. It’s serious.

    And my way isn’t working.

    Time to hand over the reins, once again. Time to take the leap of faith and ACT upon what my mouth has been claiming to believe.

    Thanks for the reminder in this post. I thought it was a lesson I had already learned. But it’s not the first time I’ve noticed that sometimes lessons need to be re-visited.