A dear friend of mine is suffering intensely right now. When I look at her situation, I so confidently see and believe God is going to work His power just like he did for me. Isn’t it amazing how He gives us faith for others even when we don’t feel it for ourselves? She felt faith for me last year and encouraged me often. And so I, too, tell her things that helped me persevere and built my faith in my suffering. And I truly believe them for her. Because with everything in me, I know that God is faithful. Last week in a quick e-mail she made reference to my strength.
But last week, I didn’t feel so strong. I’ve been struggling to find my footing with our recent transition. Change is very hard for me, and so I’m grasping for any form of control. Things that I thought I had matured out of trying to control, like my husband or washing my hands, seem to have crept back into my life. The truth is, I am a mess most days.
In the middle of this mess, I have a few options. I can become overwhelmed and down and watch 18th/19th century period pieces (I cannot confirm or deny if this is a choice I made on some days last week. After all, it was the week of Valentine’s). Or I can remember who and whose I am. I can remember the Father delights in me, and then begin to relinquish control because I know He is sovereign, good, and wise*. Even while I was still a messy sinner, Christ died for me (Rom. 5:8). The Spirit of God lives in this messy jar of clay and displays His great power in my weakness (Rom. 8:11; 2 Cor. 4:7).
Recently I observed a sister in Christ read Zephaniah 3:17 (NIV) over a brother in Christ:
The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.
It was such a powerful moment to witness the truth of these verses sinking into another’s soul. I, too, want these words to sink deep into my soul, and I sent them to my friend last week, as well. It is true: A Mighty Warrior is with me, delighting in me. Plain old, nothing, messy me.
*Read Trusting God by Jerry Bridges for a study on the Sovereignty, Wisdom, and Love of God.