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TITLE: Introspection
By Darlene Casino
04/09/06
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I had prepared this as a first person article in a discipleship/christian magazine. It is the first one I have done in years and I would appreciate any feedback
Introspection

My constant temptation is to analyze everything that touches my life: to learn and experience more about God's plan or His ways than He wishes to reveal to me at this time; to press, push or force some kind of doing on my part that evidences all my leading. Too often I allow myself to be:
"agitated-put into violent motion
disturbed-thrown into disorder
unsettled-unhinged, deranged" as John 14:27 in
Amplified bible points out.

I have found it easy to see the problems, issues and obstacles that cross my path. In doing so, they grow bigger until my perception of Jesus is diminished or obscured. Then I find myself on a hamster's wheel within my soul, constantly running but not going anywhere. I am then without resolve, without peace. It's not that I don't look to Jesus. I cast many regular glances at my Lord. But rarely do I take my eyes totally off the concern that is before me. Things like; my walk, my spirituality, my sin or shortcomings, my ministry or obligations. On and on it goes!

Today, the Holy Spirit has applied scripture to me,
to my need, to my life. I have had much encouragement from my Heavenly Father. To receive what He has provided step by step, and day by day is my responsibility. I only need to keep my eyes on Jesus. It sounds so simple but God is able to complete the work He has begun in me. He will guide me in the way I should go. He blesses me with all good things. A quiet voice within me says, "Stop looking at the problems, issues and obstacles. Look at Me."

I wonder what my life will be like if I consistently follow this direction. What if I turned off the spiritual hand wringing and enjoyed the day before me? What if I gave myself permission to smell the flowers, to watch and enjoy life all around me? What if I trusted more the leading of the Holy Spirit and in His capabilities to make God's will clear to me? What if I laughed and played more? Would I, or the world around me fall apart? Would I become decadent, self-serving or totally carnal rejecting the ways of God?

Or, would my being overflow with praise and thanksgiving? Would my energies be greater and flow more easily to others because of being constantly renewed in me? Would I walk in peace because my soul was stilled and quieted? Would I be less cluttered emotionally and thus free to minister to others in need? Would my countenance be softer, more approachable, thus drawing those who are hurting closer to the Lord? I wonder
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