When I was in Sunday School, way back in the day, we had to memorize Bible verses.
I would repeat the verse to myself for days. I’d write it over and over again in a notebook. I’d read it aloud to my dog.
Then I’d head to church, recite it to my Sunday School teacher, feel superior and promptly forget it.
That is what this week was like.
By Tuesday, I memorized Romans 8:28, the scripture for Week 5.
We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.
On Wednesday, I pitched some new freelance work. By Thursday I was hired and had some more freelance leads. Thursday night, I sat in my living room, enjoying a class of wine and some Downton Abbey, while admiring my clean and organized house. On Friday, I had an amazing conference at school for one of my kiddos and sat in pride, listening to how gifted/smart/adorable/fabulous my kid was.
Friday evening, I felt superior. It was a really great week. I managed to overcome every obstacle--my husband was away most of the week, my second grader had epic homework, we had snow days and delays, the baby was sick and I had many deadlines. Despite all this craziness, I managed to thrive professionally and personally. I was so great! God was so Good.
Of course, I could not remember the exact words of Romans 8:20-something. But I had the general gist down.
Saturday morning, I had to look up Romans 8:28 to begin writing my recap. By Saturday afternoon, I was in tears over my husband’s next business trip.
The entire weight and stress of the week came crashing down on me.
Through the successes of my week--through my drive to succeed and my need to compete with myself to be superior, I forgot God. I also forgot that by not admitting my struggle, by ignoring how hard it is to be a stay-at-home, work-at-home, occasional work-widow, I was carrying an enormous burden all by myself.
I set out with something to prove on Tuesday. I wanted to prove that when I focused my energy on my strengths, that I would succeed for God's purpose.
It was very narcissistic of me.
Because while I know God wants to use me to raise strong, Christian women and one strong, Christian son; I also know that God might not care too much about homework and school conferences. And I know my ability to write can be used to share his glory; I also use it to share my own glory.
I read about God. I memorized a verse about God. And then I forgot God.
On Saturday, after my week of proving myself like some hard headed rebellious teenager, I crashed down. The burdens of this world are heavy. Romans 8:28 is a reminder that I need to remember God in the works I do. I need to remember God when I am struggling--instead of forgetting my struggle entirely. I need to remember that I have no idea what his purpose is for me--and that is the leap of faith. I don’t need to know exactly how he wishes to use me--I just have to be ready to be used.
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