Posted by: Kara Luker | December 5, 2010

A great faithfulness

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

My dad’s comment to last night’s post pointed out that God uses crisis to keep us in process and he nailed it. It’s not like this junk wasn’t on the inside all along; it’s just that it required a circumstance to expose it and draw me closer to him through it. The crisis has been one of fear. It swallowed me whole this week and started digesting me like Jonah in the whale’s belly.

The fear revolved around my inability in past times to recognize my worth and act accordingly, which caused me to sleep with men I didn’t like, receive abuses from myself and others, and shut down or explode rather than communicate. I stayed in situations my heart or mind told me to run from, because I didn’t think my feelings or opinions had merit.

In more recent years, I’ve tasted of God’s love and it has changed me. I’m not the same in my perceptions or actions. In work relationships and friendships, I have stepped out in truth and love to address things that did not seem right. The progress has been unmistakable. I am beginning to trust myself. Well, not myself, but the peace of God that directs me.

But the place where this dysfunction was most evident – in romantic relationships with men – has not been tested. I have had only a handful of dates since my divorce 14 years ago. After a date last week, with more to come, I was overcome by panic. A dormant volcano of fear in my gut suddenly became active, bubbling and spewing old beliefs, telling me to run or I would be trapped by my inability to say no. Not to sex, but to relationship with someone I don’t want to be with.

I don’t know this guy well enough to know if I will want to pursue it, so it really isn’t about him. But I became consumed by the fact that I could be imprisoned again by someone’s desire for me. That maybe I will give what is expected of me, rather than what I have or want to give. There is also a screwed up bit of religion in there that God might want something for me that I don’t want or can’t receive. Which, again, comes back to the fear of being imprisoned by someone else’s wants. And, just like it has nothing to do with my date, it also has nothing to do with God… but rather the misperceptions in my own heart and an outdated view of myself.

All of this was going on this week as I was trying to work, parent, plan events, meet up with friends, relate to the people in my world, keep up with my class, and communicate with this guy. It was overwhelming. So, today, during my first bit of free time in the car on my way to a friend’s house, I listened to hymns and wept. The tears came in waves, from a deep and tender spot. After a few hours of incredible conversation with my friend, I got back in my car and cried all the way home.

I felt like heaven was in that car with me, cleansing my hurts and ministering comfort and truth to heal them. It was beyond words. I really didn’t have any to offer up anyway. My raw heart was exposed before the great Lord of light and grace, who knew its every content, and who came to my rescue with a love that is greater than fear, greater than darkness, greater than sin.

It isn’t like every belief is now aligned exactly as it should be, but as I sit here beside by flickering candles listening to the rain and thunder, I am keenly aware that his faithfulness is indeed great and that he will continue to draw me into the truth of who he created me to be.

Great is Thy Faithfulness, Chris Rice

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