“And let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we shall reap if we do not grow weary.” Galatians 6:9 NASB
“The more we let God take us over, the more truly ourselves we become — because he made us. He invented all the different people that you and I were intended to be…. It is when I turn to Christ, when I give up myself to His personality, that I first begin to have a real personality of my own.” C.S. Lewis
I chose the NASB interpretation of this Bible verse because it says to “not lose heart in doing good.” It’s the heart that sits at the center of all we do, are and become.
The work we do on ourselves with God’s help to become more like him seems impossible! Actually, it is impossible but with God all things are possible. This should be a relief!
But relationship situations, our bad habits, depression, discouragements are exhausting, discouraging, and overwhelming. Progress is hard to see. We overcome a challenge and there’s two more challenges wagging and winking, sneering and taunting. Whack-a-mole! And it’s true, whether nine years old or 90 years, the job is not done. Perfection is not ours and that’s where grace does its greatest work.
Sometimes the work we do is not our sin but the sin of others that wounded, pierced, devastated us. And that “how many times do I forgive my brother—77 times” example from the Bible reminds us and haunts us. Heavy sigh.
If we were “fixed,” complete, done there are many wonderful gifts we would miss like:
Hope—does not disappoint
Vulnerability—I wrote an article in Christian Living Magazine about addiction and the caregiver. Even now my shame is burning my face and ears but vulnerability and all of the above gifts keep me pursuing and encouraging caregivers. Caregivers are compelled to hide any weakness. They must be strong for the disabled or terminally ill.
I’m sure you could list more from your life’s journey. They could appear quickly, but that’s not my experience.
The bottom line is love. Grace is the tool. Gratefulness is the attitude. Those good feelings come.
The Lord’s Prayer instructs us to pray for our daily bread. It seems that our spiritual journey is a daily decision and the outcome is God’s. In my marriage, the decision to be married was a daily decision. To be a good parent, a daily decision. To be a good boss, employee, colleague is a daily decision. To love at all, is a daily decision. Jesus told us to focus on today. God is the only one that sees the future and if I focus on being more like him today, the “fix me now!” is resolved because my focus is on him. More practice.
We want to be whole and we want it today. We want others to be fixed and we want it today. We get tired, anxious and discouraged on our spiritual journey to become more like your son. Remind us that the transformation and growth are yours and my part is willingness. It’s a daily decision. Help us to not grow weary in doing good. Help us to remember all the good we’ve accomplished and experiencing today, because of you, with thanks.