Your way. How’s that working for you?
Has your situation changed?
You’ve tried everything, right?
- Spilled your guts on Facebook, looking for sympathy, a like, or a thumbs up.
- Marched into Books-A-Million and purchased the latest number-one selling self-help book.
- Drank yourself into a stupor to escape your current reality.
- Popped a pill or two just to feel momentary happiness or relief from the crazy.
- Hid in your house and slept on the couch to avoid the day.
- Resorted to casual sexual encounters, mistaking them for love or validation.
- Rejected those closest to you, convinced they wouldn’t understand.
- Decided to be part of the crowd so you’d belong.
Didn’t work, did it?
I know. It’s okay. None of these worked for me either.
For years I stumbled through life doing things my way. I made lists. I checked the calendar. I talked it out. I rationalized. I theorized. I read books. I weighed options. I considered pros and cons. I basically relied on me. I’m smart. Surely I’m capable.
While I in no way discredit the value of these actions, I readily admit there was one thing missing.
I should have made my lists according to His will. I should have checked the calendar, leaving room for quality time with Him. I should have talked it out with Him. I should have rationalized based on His promises. I should have theorized using His truths. I should have read His book, the Bible. I should have weighed my options by holding them to the standards of Christ.
Hm…I wonder how different my circumstances would be had I chosen Him in my twenties.
I often wonder why it took so long for me to choose Christ. Why do some choose him at 7, some at 29, and others at 63? And why does depending solely on Him seem so hard, almost impossible, at times? Maybe we forget. I suppose it could be a combination of our stubborn pride, God’s unfailing mercy, and His impeccable timing.
I did not find Christ, and He did not find me. He rescued me. He saved me from a life that was empty, heading down a path of destruction. Not once but twice.
You see, He knew exactly where I was. I was never out of his sight. I was never too far from his reach. I did, however, stay just far enough away so that I could maintain my independence. And my way seemed to be working. Until life got messy.
That’s when I learned how sweet the rescue of the Lord.
I chose Christ while I was in a relationship that was not very Godly. We were not living right, and I had begun to feel the tremendous weight of my sin. My heart was heavy, my attitude sour. All the talking and pleading for change seemed to fall on deaf ears.
Feeling depleted, I sought the Lord in prayer. I cried out for answers. I surrounded myself with women who lifted me up in prayer. I knew it was a fight I could not win on my own, and I was exhausted. I longed for reprieve and wanted it sooner rather than later.
And sooner is what I got.
Within twenty-four hours of intense prayer time, God made a way for me to leave the relationship. His Word had proven true.
The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation. Psalm 91:14-16
While this rescue changed my life and planted my feet on the path of righteousness, it did not come with a happily-ever-after guarantee. Remember I said He rescued me twice.
So I went right back to the relationship and married. The short version of the story is that once again I was facing a fierce battle—the weight and influence of a sinful life meant to kill, steal, and destroy everything good and wholesome.
So once again I sought the Lord in prayer. By this round, though, I knew how to fight with scripture. I knew truth. I knew the promises He had for me. I prayed right prayers, and I prayed wrong prayers. I was fighting, desperately fighting. He had to show up! He just had to.
And He did.
To appreciate my rescue, you have to understand just how relentless the enemy’s strongholds were in my home. A great war had been waged over my life. What the enemy intended for my downfall the Lord used to demonstrate his miraculous power and might. The enemy would not win. Not on this night.
I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. Psalm 40:1-2
I know you are pleased with me, for you have not let my enemies triumph over me. You have preserved my life because I am innocent. You have brought me into your presence forever. Psalm 41:11-12
How glorious the rescue of the Lord!
Are you drowning in the sea of sin?
Are your feet cemented in fear?
Is your stomach tied in knots of worry?
Is your mind littered with thoughts of anger and hatred?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, here's help:
· Choose Christ
· Get on your knees and repent
· Surround yourself with women who know the power of the cross
· Submit to His will
· Accept the prompting of the Holy Spirit
· Be prepared to change your surroundings—that means people and places
Then you too can know the saving power of the one true living God!