Friday, April 29, 2016

Certain of Jesus

Hey gals,

I've been thinking a lot this week about Identity, and wanted to share something that the Lord etched into my mind and heart as I was processing questions related to "What Will I Be?"  "Who Have I Become?"  "How Will I Become X?"  

These thoughts have stemmed from conversations with some of you about the boundary lines of life, trying to figure out our unique, individual identities in the midst of families, or preparing for marriage/engagement, etc., or simply trying to discern next steps in our careers or professional/personal interests.  

1 John 3 says "Beloved, you are God's child NOW; and what we WILL be has not yet appeared; 
but we KNOW that when He appears, we shall be like HIM, for we shall see him as He is."

Of this, Utmost for His Highest writes, 

"Certainty is the mark of the common-sense life: gracious uncertainty is the mark of the spiritual life.  To be certain of God means that we are not uncertain in all of our ways; this is breathless expectation.  We ARE uncertain of the next step, but we are certain of GOD.  Immediately, we abandon all to God, and do our duties, and He packs our lives with surprises.  We are not uncertain of God, but uncertain of what He is going to do next.  When rightly related to God, life is full of spontaneous, joyful expectancy.  Leave the whole thing to Him -- it is uncertain how He will come, but He WILL come.  Remain steadfast to Him."

It is truly His grace, but lately I've been feeling such a tremendous sense of peace and joy in knowing that I can be so certain of who God is, His love, His wisdom, His power, His desire to bend and bless, His heart that knows each one of us so so intimately, and His kind, perfect timing.  Am I uncertain of certain circumstances in my life?  Of course.  We all are!  I don't know the outcome of the current chapter, let alone the chapter 100 pages ahead in the story of my life.  BUT, I can live in joyful, free, spontaneous expectancy because my Father is the most certain thing I can ever depend on.

Also, it is so comforting to think that as we live in the present reality of being God's child - His beloved, protected, blessed child -- we can live without fear of the future of what we will be.  What we will be hasn't yet appeared -- and the future is HIS.  But we know that the point isn't about our own Identity.  The point is that we are becoming more and more like Jesus, the author and perfecter of our lives and faith and legacy.  And one day, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him as He truly is, and what our lives were in light of His glory and plan and love.

Thinking about this has brought me to tears this week.  The kind of heart tears that ache in your chest, because I just can't get over the fact that God would give us such certainty and hope in Him in the midst of a dreary, uncertain world.   I am so worried sometimes about my future, my career, whether or not God will bring me a husband, what I will be TOMORROW, if my dreams and visions will become realities. But all Jesus wants is for us to give Him our hearts TODAY, and find rest in His love and provision and daily bread.  

Still, I dream, and wrestle, and desire what He isn't giving me right now, and everything can feel so scary and uncertain sometimes.  "Leave the Whole Thing to Him."  Really, Lord?  The WHOLE thing?  Can't I just peek around the corner of uncertainty and see what is going to happen?!  And at the end of the day, I know what He is calling me to do.  Lay it down, every single day. Worship Him, His certainty, His goodness, His perfect power and ability to come through at the last minute when I need Him to the most.

Lauren Daigle sings this amazing song called Once and For All.  

God, I give you what I can today,
These scattered ashes that I hid away,
I lay it all at your feet.
From the corners of my deepest shame,
The empty places where I've worn your Name,
Show me the Love, I say I believe!
Help me to lay it down, 
Oh, Lord! I lay it down

Oh let this be, where I die -- 
My Lord, with Thee, Crucified.
Be lifted high, 
As my kingdoms fall.
Once and for all, once and for all.

There is victory in my Savior's Laws,
In the crimson flowing from the Cross,
Pour over me, pour over me.

Oh let this be, where I die -- 
My Lord, with Thee, Crucified.
Be lifted high, 
As my kingdoms fall.
Once and for all, once and for all.

I love you all, and pray you have a restful, faith-filled weekend in the certainty of the Father.

You can hear the song at this link:
Once and For All