Today is our last full day at Family Camp and by now we have rode horses, swam in the river, been to the pool 874 times, and eaten glorious camp food. Actually the food out at Crier Creek is pretty good, so no complaining there. Tomorrow we will drive home, and times where there is an end to something totally fun are super hard for Amos. They are hard for most kids, but they are super hard for him. EVERY SINGLE time our parents are in town or we go visit them, he bawls after the goodbye's are said. He just has a hard time with this, and I understand because frankly he had a lot of hard goodbye's in his life. So, if you think about it will you pray for my sweet Amos tomorrow around 10 AM? Thanks.
On to today's guest post …. it's from my friend Fabs and you will love it. I love all her work and I'm so glad that she'll take time out of her very busy schedule to write something for my little ole' piece of the blogging world. Fabs is a great teacher of God's word and I've been honored to sit under her teaching and leading for 2 years now, and God has used her greatly in my life to challenge and mold my faith. Enjoy this post and show her some love by leaving her a comment!
This is not the post I want to write today.
I want to write a post that is funny and charming and poignant and real.
I want to write the kind of post that makes you want to retweet or follow me or whatever.
And I'm telling you all that because most of all – I want to write an authentic post.
I want you to see me in this scramble of letters and words and I want to reach through this page and grab on to you and I want us to find comfort in the reality that – while this humanity thing is crazy and messy and isolating – we are not alone.
Every one of us has weird/hard days.
I'm sitting here as I write this with a friend who is married with three kids. I had lunch today to process the discontentment in my soul with a girl who has been married for 3 years. I, myself, am single.
My day has been a case study on the truth that no temptation has seized us that is not common to man. Today has provided gracious proof that I cannot be saved from whatever has a hold of me today by a shift in circumstance.
There is no stage of life that can fully protect you from the weird sense of disappointment with this life.
I just want something new, you know?
The first 21 years of my life taught me that life was built on seasons. We learned to live for new and uncharted thing around the corner: summer vacation yields to back to school shopping, then comes the first day of school, winter break, the spring semester, and then a whole new summer vacation.
There was always something different pending; always something to provide a vehicle for hope of newness, of change.
But something happens, and you wake up one day and life has cannibalized the seasons. The thrill of something new around the corner is gone. This is just your life: this routine, without change and without end.
Monotony feels unmanageable to my soul.
We are built to hope I guess.
We define ‘hope' as a sense of wishfulness. We think of hope that way because we're so used to hoping in things that aren't guaranteed.
Hope – real hope – is not about if, but when. Biblical hope is certain confidence in things that will be, not a prayerful desire for things that might be.
Tonight I'm praying for faith to obey God's instruction: set the scraps of all my hope entirely – fully – on the grace that will be brought to me at the revelation of Jesus Christ. I'm praying for faith to believe in His return and bank on it with everything in me.
You know what the saddest thing is though?
I'm mostly praying for that so that I can feel better. As if the primary benefit of the return of my sweet Savior is that I'll get to feel better.
My ultimate goal is not Jesus, it's deliverance from uncomfortable feelings.
It breaks my heart.
May God forgive me.
And I guess that's the best thing: that I hope He will forgive me.
That's not a wishful thought or an eyes squeezed shut kind of hope. It's confidence. I'm banking on His grace.
Because it's been purchased for me by a Savior who has faced all the hopelessness and discomfort that exists so that I could sit here tonight with a hope that will never disappoint.
SO needed this today. Thank you for sharing your heart!
I needed to read this and be reminded of this truth that my hope is ultimately in Jesus. Thank you for being real!
I certainly understand that our primary end should be to give God the trust, faith, love and hope that He is so worthy of-for His glory-regardless of how we feel. But it also seems that there is something sweet about the fact that a hope in the certain return of our Lord and Savior is what makes us feel better. It seems like a good thing that our souls would not be satisfied with fleeting wishes in this world, but that what makes us feel alive and good is that which we’re made for, the hope of spending forever in the fellowship of our Creator for His glory and our good. You say you’re saddened that “[your] ultimate goal is not Jesus, it’s deliverance from uncomfortable feelings.”, but it seems to me that there’s something true and good in recognizing that deliverance from uncomfortable feelings and the disappointments of this world are found in Jesus, and that crying out to Him for faith and obedience because you are not satisfied without faith and obedience is a proper response. I love your posts and your thoughts often resonate deeply with me. I don’t mean to be insensitive to the depth of what you are expressing here, but am interested in understanding the distinction you’ve written about a little more clearly if you’re available to discuss it further. I’m thankful for your honesty and proclamation of our one true hope. Thank you!
I love that. Yeah. I think it’s tricky. I agree that believing that He makes us feel better is a good thing – and honoring to Him.
I think the tricky part comes for me in that I can tend to want ANYTHING that will make me feel better right now. If Jesus works – great. If not – I’ll try something else.
I wrote a little bit about this distinction here: http://www.fabsharford.com/satisfied-beware-of-using-god/
Let me know if that clarifies my thoughts?
Thank you, Fabs! That post is very helpful and clarifying. Like you said, it is tricky, even more so because our hearts can be so deceptive (I’m thankful we can trust Him for that conviction too!). I think this point from your post is key to remember “God does make us happy, but that is not why He exists.” It’s so easy to get that wrong, and sadly that is probably my posture before God more often than I realize. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I came across this today and am thankful for His grace in conviction. Thanks for your help in that too!