Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The curse of Compassion

I was born a compassionate person.  I am emotional.  I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve.  At times, this has been a curse in my life.  I even hated God for the compassion that I felt for others because I lost several things in my quest to be a savior to those in some sort of need, whether it be a physical or emotional one.  I would cry out to God "WHY ME?!  WHY DO I HAVE TO CARE SO MUCH WHEN NO ONE ELSE SEEMINGLY DOES??" I was the girl with the weight of the world in her hands.

During my teenage years I rebelled against my compassionate nature and tried very very hard to turn my thoughts to my own self gratification and righteousness.  I usually succeeded because I am very strong-willed and God gave me the freedom to choose my own path.  As it turns out, it was a very hard and bumpy path with lots of twists, turns, potholes, and even chasms in it.  But even when, in our own stubbornness, we choose the wrong path and try to change what God has made us to be, He is there, like a crossing guard.  At the crossroads of life, which are very numerous if we stop to count them, He is there pointing us in the right direction.  The question is:  Do we choose His path or our own?  Do we go where we feel He is leading us or do we ignore Him because His way doesn't make sense to us?  I regrettably admit that I have taken my own road many times and most often it leads to pain and confusion.  But "God is not a God of confusion, but of peace" ~ 1 Corinth. 14:33

The past several years of ministry have been somewhat confusing for me.  Of course, lots of good things have come out of it but it's like I've been wandering and searching and trying to figure out my place in the world and in the church (the collective body of Christ).  I've served in many ways and capacities but have still felt confusion; never really 'at home' in the role that I was in.  Again, God has certainly used me in every area, and for that I am eternally grateful.

But once again I find myself at a crossroads in my life.  I'm doing my best to listen to the Crossing Guard and to embrace the gifts that He has given me that will put me on the perfect path that He has laid out for me.  This is always easier said then done; the enemy often tries to confuse me, even within the church. 

I invite you to embark on this journey with me and to help me to run the race that He has set out for me.  I don't know exactly what this looks like, what it will mean, or where it will lead me.  I do know that I will try my best to submit to my Father's will and I covet all prayers for strength and endurance on the road ahead.

Until then,


Jill said...

In my recent study of Esther, I thought a lot about destiny and turning points. In Jeremiah, God says He has a specific plan and a purpose for our lives, and He promises to keep us on the right path as we seek His way above our own. Some are called to BIG things - Esther was placed at a certain time and place where God used her to save the lives of all the Jews in Persia! Wow! But to do it, she had to face death in the face and be willing to die to accomplish that which God had called her to do. It was a BIG thing!
I thought a lot about Grandma H... I wonder if she sees her destiny as being BIG. She hasn't had a BIG, public calling. She hasn't saved a people group from destruction. She hasn't faced death to accomplish her purpose. Yet she is more like Jesus than anyone I know. Why? Because she daily lays down her life, her own plans, for others. She visits those she knows who are sick and takes them soup; she plays cards with Aunt Ella & her friends in the nursing home so they'll be a little less lonely and have something to look forward to; she drives up to Windsor to attend recitals, birthday parties and special events. She helps with her church's yard sales; she takes her turn cleaning her church and getting the communion ready ( even though she disagrees strongly with some of the policies of her local body); basically, when she sees a need, she does the little bit she can to help. She doesn't try to fix everything - she doesn't try to bear the full load of everyone's burdens...she just does what she can. And look at all the lives she has touched!! She has been Jesus to so many!!!!
I think, when she stands beside Jesus in heaven and looks back at her life, she will see that her destiny has been HUGE. In retrospect it will all become clear.
I am proud of you, Honey, for seeking His will above all else! Live today, just TODAY, knowing that He is using you and leading you along the path He has chosen for you. And for what it's worth, I see a lot of Grandma in you.

Your bff Steph said...

I have nothing deeply profound to add right now. Just wanted to say I love you and I hope and pray I always get to walk the journey with you as we both try to listen the the Crossing Guard on our crossroads.

And thank you - you know I needed those crossroads thoughts.