Saturday, May 21, 2011

A Bit of "Real-ness" from This Clay Jar

I don't know if it has been the increase in beetles that have taken up residence in our home or the frustration over the time it takes to learn a second language...but I have found myself asking the Lord: "Um...Lord, why am I living here?" Everytime I ask, the Lord replies..."Because I asked you to." That usually resets that peace deep in my heart...because I know that there is JOY in obeying the Lord. Obedience and Faith go hand-in-hand. If I say I have faith but I don't obey than my faith is rather empty.

Yet, the fact remains that living here can be challenging. The cultural mistakes we make, the "very different" style of driving, the fact that we have to filter all the water we use, the lack of familiar things in the grocery store (and when we do find them...they are so over-priced that we can't justify buying it)...and a hundred other "little things" that accumulate into a moments of frustration when I find myself asking that "why" question.

That is when it is good to turn to Scripture and read this passage from 2 Corinthians 4:

We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies

Yeah, I am "unable" to live here without God's Power. I am "pressed" by cultural differences...but I am not crushed. I am "perplexed" by the conjugation of the past tense verbs in Spanish but I don't need to be driven to despair. I am hunted down by thoughts of 'I can't!' or 'Why?' but God has not abandoned me. I do feel "knocked down" by exhaustion and frustration over learning to drive a stick-shift...but I am never destroyed. The fact that we are here is proof of God's great strength and plan to reconcile all people to Himself. I may be a fragile clay jar...but I do have His light shining in my heart that provides me the peace and strength to live as He has asked.

(Thanks to the staff at C.I.T. for 'making me' memorize this passage of Scripture.)

posted by Bethany