Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Raised Up With Christ. Ephesians 2:6

  "To the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved." NKJV
  "For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus." JCB

  A word keeps rolling around my head this morning: confidence. Which I suppose is the sum total of what this entire affirmation journey is supposed to help instill in my heart along with, and more importantly, a better understanding of God and Jesus.
  The biggest gift of a growing confidence is the ability to acknowledge my weaknesses and, for the moment, to be okay with them. Yet, at the same time, I am able to lift those weaknesses up to God for help in eradicating them from my life, trusting that God will do just that. Although, I have to think about what is regarded as weaknesses may not be, well, being weak.
  I also need to be watchful that confidence doesn't come wrapped in pride or self-preservation. It's good to remind myself that my "self" belongs to God, the designer of my soul.
  This is a particularly vulnerable time. There's been a shift in my heart and soul lately. A good shift because it feels like I have finally come home to where I belong. God raised me from the dead and continues to wipe away the traces of the grave.
  So I flinch at criticism, implied or otherwise. I admit to realizing that sometimes I interpret a chance comment as a criticism. Or maybe it is a criticism and I blame myself for assuming it might be because I admit to flinching at criticism. What a conundrum!
  Lord, can you shed some light on this? Can you enable me to discern what is truth?
  Maybe I flinch because my own inner critic can be awfully harsh (she was well trained). Although that toxic voice is slowly falling to the wayside by being replaced with laughter at my own foibles and the sure knowledge that the former things of this life will pass away.
   Maybe it's because it triggers the memories of abuse, subjugation, and being controlled. Maybe it's because to be criticised is to be silenced, to be judged. Maybe it's because it feels like all the work the Lord has done in me will never be enough. And I doubt everything, even God's hand and direction in my life! 
  That's the worst part, feeling apart from God.
  Maybe it's because the sensitive, wanting to please child who was quelled by "The Look" is still alive and well inside me. 
  Not to worry. There's hope.
  There's been a couple of things come across my path lately. (Thank You, Lord for these gifts!)Richard Rohr's book I mentioned yesterday was one. Before that, I'd read an article by "Why Creative People Sometimes Make No Sense" (Nov 3, 2013). His articulate and thoughtful post gave me some rich insight into my own creative mind and a wonderful dollop of grace. It's worth a read.
  Which takes us back to confidence where confidence isn't pride but is raised up and sustained by reaching for the heart of God about everything.

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