I've managed to read two books this week- it's been quite some time since I was able to read like this. The second book I read was Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton. It is gritty, powerful, and insightful to read her story and I find myself relating in places I didn't expect.
As she battles against the hurts and the pains she has felt there comes a point when she asks, "What if in skipping the pain, I was missing my lessons," (p. 201)?
I started to recall how a dear person in my life has deflected the difficult things, blaming others, shaming them, even disowning them, instead of facing the deeper reality that these things are difficult because he/she jumped to the conclusion that it had to be someone else's fault. It couldn't be the fault of this dear person- it must be the other person.
By choosing to ignore the hurt being felt inside because something or someone failed it was easier to push them/it away and cut it out entirely. Never realizing that by cutting it out my dear one was missing out on the lessons God wanted to teach.
It's like a student taking scissors to a textbook and cutting out the parts he or she doesn't want to learn. How can we truly learn in life if we only approach the lessons like a buffet-picking some things and avoiding others?
When God came to Abraham and Sarah and told them they would have a son, they didn't think about what other lessons God needed them to learn. They just celebrated their son. Then came the journey when Issac and Abraham went up Mt. Moriah to give an offering to God. Abraham knew God told him to sacrifice his son- but he didn't want to focus on that part. He just reveled in time with his son. Finally, the moment came when Issac was tied and put on the altar. Abraham couldn't ignore the lesson any longer (see Genesis 22).
My heart hurts as I watch my dear one put so many things, relationships, and opportunities on the altar to sacrifice. These are are unnecessary losses and I wonder how much pain will be felt when he/she sees what has been left behind.
Some of the hardest lessons to learn in life include the biggest one- we cannot pick and choose which lessons we want to miss if we want to grow up and truly follow Christ. He asked for the cup to be passed from Him in the Garden of Gethsemane. When the answer given was no, Jesus understood and He picked it up and drank from it every last bitter drop.
Dear Ones, we cannot choose Christ and then skip the lessons we don't like. If we choose Him, then we choose all of Him. Even the hard things, the painful things, the wake-me-when-it's-over things. This is how we walk worthy of the One who called us (Colossians 1:10). Let us put away our scissors and pick up our pencils and paper so we can learn the lessons we are called to understand.