THE LONG OBEDIENCE STUFF

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Paper research. Fun? Nope.

By Lisa Huddleston

Probably like many of you, I have a great deal of difficulty finishing long-term projects. Oh, I start out with gusto, raring to go and looking forward to the challenge, but after a few days, or weeks, or months, or in some cases even years, I want to throw in the towel.

And that’s where I sit today–towel in hand and just about to let it fly! I’m struggling with my exercise regimen, my healthy eating program, and I have yet another paper to write for a class that will not be completed until the first week of May and still has several projects left to conquer. I just don’t wanna do anything that I know I should do today. Ugh.

That said, I did do one thing already on my list of “supposed tos.” I read today’s #LentChallenge selection. How does God always know? Really, how does He always arrange it so that I am forced to look at the truth that hits me right where I sit? (Remember where? In my corner of the ring about to throw in the towel.)

“But there is another urgency before me now. I feel compelled to go to Jerusalem. I’m completely in the dark about what will happen when I get there. I do know that it won’t be any picnic, for the Holy Spirit has let me know repeatedly and clearly that there are hard times and imprisonment ahead. But that matters little. What matters most to me is to finish what God started: the job the Master Jesus gave me of letting everyone I meet know all about this incredibly extravagant generosity of God.” (Paul, Acts 20:22-24)

Man (said with a long, drawn out, annoying Midwestern aaaaaa sound, please) … I really want to quit. You name it, I want to quit it. But no, God has to go and make me read these very words today–and I actually have to hear and heed them.

Okay, I get it. For some reason, I felt compelled to begin these classes in order to renew my teaching license–maybe to continue my work at the Adult Learning Center, maybe to face what would feel like “imprisonment” by taking a real, paying job rather than continuing to work for free and in freedom. Who knows? (Yes, God does. I know.) But whatever the outcome, I need to finish what He started in me. Keep walking on that long obedience trail in every way that He has placed before me.

Obedience is tough even for the short-term, but this long obedience stuff just may be the end of me. I guess I can hope so anyway–all the way to the end.

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