Continued from here.
If God had only transformed me from hating to loving myself, it would have been enough. If He had only released me from my emotional bondage through forgiving others, it would have been enough. If he had only healed the suicidal urges, it would have been enough. But those were just His starting points of an invitation to LIFE!
While I am glad that I’m not going to hell when I die, that fact is low on the list of reasons why I am excited to have a relationship with God. He has transformed me from death to life in many areas of my life, and He continues to do this by placing heavily on my heart that it’s time to make yet another change. Every change, no matter how difficult, is leading me to LIFE, and I’m happy to do it, even when it’s really hard for me, such as humbling myself in my marriage so God would breathe new life into those dry bones and submitting to my husband’s authority so God could bless my family as we align with His design for families. None of this has been easy – ALL of it has been life-changing!
God’s ways are LIFE, and the world’s ways are death. Every natural inclination our sinful nature entices us with leads to death. Our sinful nature lulls us into “falling asleep” to the ways of life through keeping us comfortable. I have accepted that I’ll likely never be comfortable in my life again, and that’s OK – I would rather be ALIVE! Life is growing, changing, and transforming into the image of Christ, and nothing about that is comfortable. It involves doing things God’s way – ways that run counter to the culture and are often not popular with the people around you, whose agendas are the ways of death.
I have given up a lot to follow God wholeheartedly – self-loathing, suicidal urges, an eating disorder, an anxiety disorder, anger, and bitterness. What I have gained is so much more – a close, deep, personal, and intimate love relationship with the Living God! I had to give up myself and what I want, replacing those desires with what God wants. My daily mantra is this:
Lord, help me not only to do what You call me to do, but to be who You call me to be.”
I have let go of my own plans, dreams, and desires and have made knowing God my desire. As I follow God wholeheartedly, He has changed my heart, giving me new desires that align with His. Of course, I don’t do this perfectly, but I do it authentically. God truly is the #1 desire of my heart – not what He can do for me but being in a close relationship with Him. He is the blessing, and He is who I seek.
[Graphic: Cartoon of Grace smiling and holding out her arms in joy. Courtesy Bitmoji.]