Oh hey, dusty blog. It’s been a while…
I’ve been learning a few things in my absence from this little internet hideaway — things about love and waiting, joy and patience, and above all, I’ve been learning what real surrender looks like.
Real love, real joy, real patience — they must all be learned, and that is hard. The only way to learn real love is to be given a situation when real love is required; to learn real joy, real joy must be required; and to learn how to really have patience, God must give us situations in which real patience is required.
A situation that requires real patience is not going to be easy. Many times it is going to be gut-wrenchingly, stomach-achingly, teary-eyed, heart-cry difficult.
Real love is this… biting my tongue when a coworker snaps at me and choosing to write a letter of encouragement to them instead of responding out of hurt feelings; telling my dad about my day when I would rather ignore him and go to bed; helping my mom with something immediately after she asks even when it is an inconvenience to me; recognizing the lonely, unpopular girl and inviting her into the conversation.
Real love is selfless. It hurts. It’s hard. But it’s rewarding and so worth it.
Real joy finds goodness in pain. It sees flowers on the way to work; beauty in cloudy days; purpose in waiting; friendships that come from trials; peace that transcends understanding in dark places.
And real surrender is this… Real surrender is my choice to fall to my knees in worship in a church where this is not a normal way to worship. For years the Holy Spirit has urged me to fall down in worship to him while singing at church and for years I have ignored him and told him that I would look strange and that I didn’t need to do that to show my love and devotion to him. My heart was still burdened every time a song called me to fall to my knees.
On Sunday I finally did it. I fell down in worship for the first time. For the first time, I completely surrendered myself in worship to the Creator of the Universe and said yes to his Spirit who has prompted me for so long. In the next 24 hours, God tangibly answered requests of my heart that I have been praying for for a very long time — some for months and others for years. God answered my heart.
I wrestled with God for years over surrendering my life to him and after I did, in a matter of minutes, he showed himself to me.
I encourage you today to not only know your faith, but to live it actively. Show real love — to love when it hurts; real joy — to find joy in pain; real patience — to wait for God, even through the tears and heartache; real surrender — putting your pride to the sword and falling on your knees before the King.
Do you only know real faith or do you live it? I am still learning so much. This real faith thing is hard, but it is so worth it, and I want to keep learning.