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"And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice." (1 Kings 19:11b-12)
I've always been impatient and proud, but perhaps never so much as this past year. I constantly look for quick-fix comforting, but, since these quick-fixes never seem to involve penitence and a subsequent change in thought and behavior, they only lead me farther away from God.
"Lean not on your own understanding." In my busy, trouble-fraught life, it is often easier--and much quicker--to trust in myself when I feel lost. To remember Jesus' death on the cross, His Word in the Scriptures, and the awful calamity of my own attempts at Christian living is humbling and time-consuming, and most of all, less than desirable to a sinful heart. Thus, when I struggled with issues of greed and self-glorification over my success as an author, I used my own watered-down, tailored sayings to temporarily bandage my spiritual unrest. "It's ok," I told myself. "If I gain respect and popularity for myself first, then it will be easier to do the same for God later on."
No matter that such words made little sense from a Christian perspective. I so immersed myself in my incessant work for a more "successful" career that I had little time to think over my reasoning. This is not to say that I didn't question my motives and actions--I did, but desperately tried to ignore my emptiness and sought worldly desires to block out such thoughts. A whirlwind of loss, lies, and sin culminated around me, yet my desperation was continually buried under my pretense of understanding--a philosophy of self-accommodation, not submission.
Yet out of this whirlwind came my eventual repentance. After hardening my heart for so long, I realized that the conflict between God's truth and my "quick-fixes" had to be resolved. I was on the road to pain and emptiness. I had deafened my ears from God's "still small voice" in my supposed attempts to be a Christian. The wind, earthquakes, and fire within me were hardly God's presence, but rather my loneliness in His absence. As much as it hurt to set time aside to humble myself and hear it, nothing was more relieving than casting the cares I had tried to carry myself upon Him.
Although I know the struggle against our "old Adam," whether it shows itself in pride, impatience, or some other obstruction to God' peace, will not end upon this Earth, I am grateful for this lesson God has taught me. It may be trying to live for God, and not for ourselves, but no trial can ever compare with His final reward: eternal life with Him.
p.s. If you wish to contact me, please email me at
I do not use the private messenger. Thank you!
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Reader Count & Comments
29 Dec 2005
Your honesty is refreshing. I enjoyed reading your story. It is very heart-felt. Seems like you are being real honest with yourself.
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