I'm doing better physically, though I'm still not 100% yet. But what really pains me right now is how poorly I've done on my own challenge. You remember--the pursuing God challenge?
The very day I issued that challenge, I came down sick. Very sick. And it threw a lot of things in my life, including this. And what I want to do is blame my current spiritual lassitude on having been sick. That would be justifiable, right?
But it wouldn't be honest.
Though my health certainly made spending time with the Lord more of a challenge, the real problem is this:
I've discovered that I've got both feet firmly planted in the boat.
And I do mean firmly. I am not even close to being a risk-taker. Once, on a (3-hour, professionally-administered) temperament analysis test, I scored a 3 out of 100 on risk-taking. Get the picture? I am in NO WAY a risk-taker. If you have ever seen me take a risk, just know that it was a God-thing.
And as it turns out, getting out of the boat is risky.
Here's my current struggle: There was a sacrifice that it occurred to me to make, one that would cost me dearly, financially as well as emotionally, and would have even 'cost' those around me, too. It came to me suddenly, but quietly, so quietly that I wasn't honestly sure that it was God's voice.
And I didn't want to make it.
So I questioned it. I justified it. I finagled it until it wasn't God. I became sure it wasn't God. Or if it was God, the question was just a test, a reminder of an attitude I needed to have.
So I didn't make the sacrifice.
And now, I have the strong and sinking feeling that it WAS God, and it WAS a test...and that I failed with a score of 0 out of 100.
And I so don't want to be me right now.
This feeling is so overwhelming that I have a genuine fear that I have missed something very significant. The kind of something that never gets redeemed. And it makes my heart hurt to think that I am so tied to this world and my comfort and safety that I wouldn't act in faith when God called on me.
I want to be a woman of faith.
But the truth is, today, this month, now, I'm not. I am a woman who's treasure is gonna rot soon, whose fear of the storm keeps her--as it did 11 of the disciples--from even seriously considering getting out of the boat.
And can I tell you that it is those eleven guys that give me hope? I've so often identified with Peter--zealous in heart, but the actions get all mixed up in practice. And promises made, but broken. But in this case, I see myself with the other disciples in the boat and ask myself if they too wondered, "Will I ever get a chance to actually try this again...and get it right?"
And just to be clear, there is no record in Scripture that they did get to take that particular test over again. But each of them did fulfill his mission of being a witness to Christ to the ends of the earth. And that gives me hope.
But it still hurts.
Still His, but faithless,
You know my folly, O God; my guilt is not hidden from you. May those who hope in you not be disgraced because of me, O Lord, the LORD Almighty; may those who seek you not be put to shame because of me, O God of Israel. -Psalm 69:5-6, NIV
...If we died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us; if we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself. - 2 Timothy 2:12-14, NIV