To this end also we pray for you always, that our God will count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ...But we should also give thanks to God for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught, whether by word of mouth or by letter from us. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.
2 Thessalonians 1:11-12; 2:13-17
Background: Paul wrote this to the Thessalonians because of the extreme faith and perseverance they showed when faced with suffering at the hands of unbelievers.
I read this and think - Wow! Here is an example of what Christianity is all about. That even when faced with trials still we look to God for faith and power and stand firm in His truth.
My last blog post I wrote about some struggles to do what is right. Since then I have made the choice to do what is right, even though it went against my feelings. But I can tell you that though it didn't make my life perfect, once again, I have peace. There was no peace in setting my heart against God and what He had planned for my life. There is no peace in trying to deny Truth. There IS peace in obedience.
I am ashamed of the attitude I had and the words that were said. And I am so thankful for a God who forgives!
This passage above reminds me that I was chosen by God for salvation. He chose me for sanctification - the process of growing to be more like Christ. That road is long and hard, but when we follow that path it brings Him glory.
When I am brought to the end of myself, I can't understand why I thought my plan was better, or that somehow I had more insight into how everything should work out. It seems ridiculous to have been crying out to God, "But it wasn't supposed to be this way! This is what I wanted to happen! This is what you were supposed to do!" As if I understood exactly how this brief moment, that is my life, fit into His eternal plan of Glory.
And yes, those things I wanted were good things. They were even things that God wants. The problem is I wanted it to happen in MY timing and according to MY plan. This is not how God works. I know this.
Thankfully, He has provided this wonderful gift of the Holy Spirit that can give me strength, comfort, peace, patience, and even joy as I wait for His timing and follow His plan. Of course, this would be much easier if He could give me a date, or even some idea of what He has in mind...just sayin', it would be nice.
Until then I will put my trust in Him. I will not give way to worry, fear, and anger, but rather seek comfort and strength in Him alone. At least, I'm working on it.