Thursday, February 21, 2013

I Wanted Anesthesia Not Abundance!

I few months after my husband died I remember telling a friend on the phone, "I know Jesus said he came to give us life --and not just life, ABUNDANT life. Well, I've had that abundance in many ways, but now it's abundant in PAIN and I don't want it! I don't want an abundant life, I want an anesthetized life!"

Sometimes I'm shocked at my own stupidity. I was choosing numb over normal, my wants over the wonders that God had in store for me.
I was not thinking Biblically, as a paraphrase of I Peter 4:1 illustrates:
"Since Jesus went through everything you're going through and more, learn to think like him. Think of your sufferings as a weaning from that old sinful habit of always expecting to get your own way. Then you'll be able to live out your days free to pursue what God wants instead of being tyrannized by what you want.”
But the good news is that God used that conversation to draw a line in the sand. I began to see that I had a choice. I could stand on one side or another: abundant or anesthetized. I could surrender that old sinful habit of always expecting to get my own way. I could trade it in to live out my days free to pursue what God wants instead of agonizing with the tyranny of what I wanted.
I believe this is what growing through grief is all about for the Christian. Day by day, moment by moment, God offers abundant life. Yes, abundant pain included. And abundant grace to cope. He gently uncurls fingers clutched around the life we had planned, and he opens our hands to the wonder of the amazing days ahead of us.
Take a look at your hands. How open are your fingers today?
Lord Jesus, Help us. Please. Help us think like you do, and open our hands to the abundant life you have waiting for us to begin. Amen

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