The Dark Ugly Places

Dark and Uglies

I hate it when God convicts me.  

I like to think I am doing pretty darn good.  I get ... well, complacent with where I am.  

I mean, I'm sick.  Why should I have to keep stretching and growing in God?  Isn't it time for a spiritual hiatus?

Um.

No.

I love the devotionals of Oswald Chambers.  I have had them sent to me for many years. 

There is one particular devotional that I remember year after year. Yet, it never truly hit home. This is one of those devotionals that I had always been able to say was meant for other people.  Not for me.

Now I realize why, amongst all the devotionals I have received, this one has stood out.  It is meant for me.

"The Discipline Of Disillusionment" — My Utmost For His Highest for 07/30/2012

Jesus did not commit Himself unto them for He knew what was in man. — John 2:24-25

Disillusionment means that there are no more false judgments in life. To be undeceived by disillusionment may leave us cynical and unkindly severe in our judgment of others, but the disillusionment which comes from God brings us to the place where we see men and women as they really are, and yet there is no cynicism, we have no stinging, bitter things to say. Many of the cruel things in life spring from the fact that we suffer from illusions. We are not true to one another as facts; we are true only to our ideas of one another. Everything is either delightful and fine, or mean and dastardly, according to our idea.

The refusal to be disillusioned is the cause of much of the suffering in human life. It works in this way - if we love a human being and do not love God, we demand of him every perfection and every rectitude, and when we do not get it we become cruel and vindictive; we are demanding of a human being that which he or she cannot give. There is only one Being Who can satisfy the last aching abyss of the human heart, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. Why Our Lord is apparently so severe regarding every human relationship is because He knows that every relationship not based on loyalty to Himself will end in disaster. Our Lord trusted no man, yet He was never suspicious, never bitter. Our Lord's confidence in God and in what His grace could do for any man, was so perfect that He despaired of no one. If our trust is placed in human beings, we shall end in despairing of everyone.

You see .. I can be very cynical.  You might not see it in my writings.  But just ask my family.  I can say stinging and bitter things.  Just ask my children.

I demand of human beings what they cannot give.

OUCH!

In many ways, my challenges have put me in a place of entitlement in my own eyes.  As I need to be taken care of - I start to expect that care.  I guess in some ways, I have demanded it.

Again  - ouch.

As I strive to grow closer to God - He is showing me the dark uglies inside of me.  This is one of the darkest and the ugliest.  

I realize this is not my usual "encouraging words" post.

Yet - I do want to encourage you all.  If God is convicting you - and perhaps even using parts of your illness to show you places you need to grow.  Be grateful.  You are being conformed to the image of His Son.

I don't like what God showed me is in me.  Yet, I know He shows me these things - not to break my spirit, but to show me places where change is needed for my own good.

So, I ask forgiveness, pray for that love in my heart, and start a new day.  

Today.

Father God, Thank you that you want us to be loving and kind and that you show us what that loving kindness looks like in Your Son.  Help us to see where we need to grow.  Help us to realize that our challenges are not excuses to stop growing in You.  Amen and amen. 

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 Comments are both welcomed and encouraged! I so appreciate hearing your thoughts and getting to know you through them!  I do read them and am so blessed by them. Please let me know if I can be praying for you.  If it is a private request you can email me from my contact page.  (There is a place to mark in the comment section if you wish to be notified of replies.)

For my email friends - have you visited the Encouraging Words  website?  You can find devotionals listed by topics, visit the archives, and leave your thoughts on this post (or anything else you'd care to share!)   Just click on the link.  

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