Day 7/21: How Did You Get That Way?

Welcome here! This blog is an “extra blog” being posted daily between January 13 and February 3 to come alongside the 21 Days of Prayer. We are reading the book of John with the intention of looking at Jesus very closely. We want to know Him really well so that we will love Him even more!

January 20, 2019

Good morning Jesus,

Coffee and conviction. You really put your finger on a “way that I think” today that needs some shaping. The other day I read a quote by Brennan Manning in the 21 Days of Prayer Email and it has stuck with me. I am again challenged about that word “trust” and having the mind of Christ. In that quote, Brennan said, “The troubled eyes and furrowed brow of the anxious believer are the symptoms of a heart where trust has not found a home. The Lord Himself must pass through all the shades of the emotional spectrum with us – from rage to tears to amusement. But the poignant truth remains: we do not trust. We do not have the mind of Christ.”

For one particular issue I am dealing with, I give myself permission to go through that range of the emotional spectrum because isn’t that just human? Don’t You identify with me in my weakness (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)? I think the answer is Yes…and….But. Yes, I am fully accepted by You, You will walk my emotional journey with me, but there is also a better place I can live. This place of trust.

Oh GOD – Father, Son and Spirit – come tutor me. I wrestle with how to trust in “that situation” and to have hope about it. I want to. I want to have the mind of Christ. I know trust has to be trust and it can’t be assigning You the outcome. Trust has to be trust even when I am living in outcomes I don’t understand. Trust has to be me looking at You and seeing that you are thoroughly loving, and trusting that love even when present circumstances often seem uninhabitable.

Reading John 7 today I love what You say and just how transferable it is to me. The Jews are all wound up about You, amazed at You and bugged that they are amazed by You. They say, “How did this man get such learning without having studied?” (15). Basically they were saying, “How did you get that way?”

You answered them and said,

“My teaching is not My own. It comes from Him who sent Me. If anyone chooses to do GOD’s will, he will find out whether My teaching comes from GOD or whether I speak on My own…” (16-17)

I love how You answered them and I love how this speaks to me today. It isn’t that You devalue study, it’s just that no words, no insight, no wisdom, no conviction can match the Words of GOD. Your words were unlike any words they had heard because they contained all of the authority of GOD. What a difference!

You still speak today with this same supernatural kind of insight wisdom and conviction and when we listen well and share this well, it testifies to how we got this way: You have changed us. You are changing us. ***This also calls out to me to know Jesus really well and to listen very well so that I will be changed by You!

This past Wednesday at the prayer evening there were children and young people there who certainly have not had a lot of time to amass a library of knowledge. Yet a young person can have beautiful insight about You. They can hear from You as You speak to them on a level they will understand and we hear surprisingly mature things come out of their mouths that could have only come from You. How did they get this way? Only through the Spirit of GOD.

There was a day when You showed me my need for salvation – forgiveness from my sin. You did this. It isn’t something I saw naturally – You had to show me that I was fallen. I confessed, I agreed with You and asked You to rescue me. And You did. You showed me that Your Son died for me and I could receive that pardon for my sins. You made me clean and gave me Your Spirit to teach me Your ways. All of this did not come because I studied. It came because You led me there.

And now I am able to say that what You are teaching me, and what I am talking about is not my own. It comes from You. I am Your follower, walking in Your will, and time will tell if what I say comes from You or whether I was speaking on my own. Jesus, You always spoke in perfect alignment with the Father; I speak on my own at times and make mistakes doing so. Forgive me for running ahead and forgetting to ask You first.

So here I am wrestling with trust. I pray You would do something in my inner world that will give me a confidence and peace; pull me away from living “half way to tragedy” – that middle grey place between total despair to the left and bright hope to the right. I believe without a doubt that You will give me wisdom beyond my years. I believe You will settle me and give me a picture that is truth-filled and perfect. Lord of my life, help me to understand Your Good News deeply, because I know this will orient me only in one direction: trust.

I was reading an article by Tim Keller. He says, “If the inmost desires of the heart are likened to a piece of metal, then common morality bends the heart into a moral pattern with the tools of fear and pride rather than melting the heart into a permanent new shape through humble joy and loving gratitude that decimates its old selfish insecurity and arrogance. If you bend a piece of metal, it will eventually either snap back into its original position or break off.” I think this applies to what I am thinking about. I am asking you to melt mistrust down and form something completely new so that it has no resemblance to the old.

May trust Come Alive in me!