12.02.2016

Deep Truth


I've mentioned this before on the blog but last year was a difficult year spiritually. I know I can't sum up an entire year but it was tough. I learnt so many lessons, mainly that Christ teaches His children so much in suffering. It is in the valleys that we grow, that we develop character. I love when James writes that we will experience trials and hard seasons not "if" but "when." James puts it this way...

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing" (James 1:2-4)

Trust me, I didn't always consider being misunderstood and being overlooked joy. But I did grow. Looking back on my spiritually journey this past year, this hard season is where I grew the most. It is where I sang worship songs with every ounce of my being, claiming those promises over my life and clinging to every word. It is where I journaled for hours as I prayed to the Lord and it is where I memorized scripture more than ever before. It is the season where Mark and I grew closer together, praying and needing to lean on the Lord for our rest, not each other because we were both weary. I am so thankful for our trials last year because I vividly see the endurance it produced in my life... but trust me I couldn't see it at the time. It is so easy to look back on a season and so hard to see the Lord working in it.

I know God and His heart so much deeper and with that, I want more of Him. I would listen to spiritual mentors talk about how much they needed God and if they didn't spend time with Him in the day it was ruined. I was inspired by their faith but didn't really get it. But now, guys I get it. I need God every single day. I know not spending time in His word or in communion with Him is a wasted day. And it's so much better. Life is so much better living it for God, not myself. Obviously I am a sinful being, I screw up so much but I know I break God's heart over my sin... but guys, you can get to a place of knowing deep truth, craving more of Jesus and needing him and it is the most freeing place to live in. So if you are in a rough season, know I was just in one reading these blogs and it not making much sense. Let me encourage you to run to God, to sit at His feet during this tough season knowing that your trial will produce endurance. Know I am cheering you on friend. 

I was listening to a podcast by Christy Nockels and she was talking about deep truth. How she longs and craves it and that our relationship with God gets deeper, sweeter and more full. We don't stay stationary. I had the podcast playing in my pocket, while Jackson was snuggled in my arms getting ready for nap time and I felt the Spirit whisper in my soul "you get it now." Tears stung my eyes with joy at how I could relate to what Christy was saying. I thanked the Lord that I knew he was near and kissed sweet Jackson's forehead praying that He would know the love the Lord has for him.

All this talk reminds me of these verses in Hebrews. It says:

"Concerning him we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for some one to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil." (Hebrews 5:11-14)

I think we can get into a routine and get stuck. I think Christians believe in God, give him their life and then realize the dishes still need to be done, laundry folded and they have to go to their job on Monday. Then church becomes a routine and the songs we sing just become words, not praise to a holy God. God can just be another thing on a to-do list, another task to check off. There has been days and seasons where I have felt stuck and these verses in Hebrews challenge and convict me so deeply.

I have been a Christ follower since I was a kid. By this time I should be a teacher of the word, not still learning about the beginning truths. I am so thankful that I am craving the word, the deeper truths of God and not satisfied with the elementary principles.

Especially having a newborn baby these verses hit home. I know that Jackson is needing milk right now, he can't have solid food. Yet as he grows, the milk won't be enough for him, he will move on to mashed fruits and then small chunks of food until he is one day eating full meals with meat and gravy. It is such a good, pure metaphor of what our lives with the Lord should be like. Friend, the meat is so much better than the milk. Pursue Christ with everything knowing as you learn the deeper truths it only gets better and sweeter.  

If you've just decided to lay down your life and follow Christ (first so excited for you!) but I don't expect you to be eating the meat and gravy. I expect you to sort out the scriptures and I expect you to fall a lot as you try to navigate it all.

So, where are you at? 

Have you been a Christ follower for a while and are still demanding that people serve you and teach you? I hope to encourage you to start eating the real food, the good stuff. I encourage you to start teaching the word to others, to start serving others to start pursuing the deeper truths of the scriptures.

Or are you in a rough season where you need to be encouraged that trials produce endurance which equals more of this deeper truth? Please hear me out. God will carry you through this and then you can teach and encourage others through the trial and pain.

I love the next verse of the passage and the start of Hebrews 6 "therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity..." 

Will you press on with me? Let's encourage each other, build each other up and press on to be more mature in the Lord. Let's continue to pursue the good stuff.

Praying for you,

Maddie


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