It isn't a wrestling like Jacob because instead of talking to God and releasing what kept waking me up, I tried to subdue it and return to my slumber. It's not that God needs to hear our anxieties, worries, or concerns ~ He already knows what they are after all BUT He loves and cares for us so much that He WANTS to hear them. When we call on, seek, and trust God for His provision then we should expect He will answer.
"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again:
Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all.
The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything,
but in every situation, by prayer and petition,
with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
On some levels, I know this is true yet my desire is to serve and share how God changed my life with others through my writing and speaking. Am I as strong and vigorous today as I was in 2004? Am I doing this for me or to wholeheartedly follow God?
When eye to eye with God, if He were to ask me, "Lisa, did you live for me...or the world?" Can I fall to my knees and respond, "100% for you God." No I can't. Is there anyone who can say they are living a life like Caleb, especially those of us calling ourselves followers of Jesus. Are we just doing or are we living the call we are given?
As I wrestled with much anxiety, instead of rolling over and increases the chance of an ulcer, I made a pot of coffee and went to the one place that brings me comfort, peace, and direction in the wee hours of the morning. I think God wakes me up sometimes to remind me to come to Him, "“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”, Matthew 11:28-30 NIV.
Do we still have a journey before us? Yes. Will it be difficult? Most likely. Could God bless us exceedingly and abundantly to ease this self-induced burden? Yes. Will he? Time will tell.
Just like you, we don't deserve the blessings God gives us. It is only because He is gracious and merciful that He chooses to extend love, generosity, and provision for both our needs and wants. I enjoy giving and doing to help others. My Gram told me that what we give to the Lord, He gives back ten fold. We shouldn't give with the expectation to receive, the joy to know we are helping someone is often the only return we see yet it's one that can provide encouragement to keep being you, or me. In God's time, who knows what He has planned or how He'll use our current struggles to help others when we share about it.
Have you ever thought about the struggles you face might be your challenge today yet a stepping stone to helping others down the road? A beautiful thought, don't you think? You might be experiencing what you are because your testimony will save someone else from the same mistake down the road. Go and be a blessing!
"So on that day Moses swore to me,
‘The land on which your feet have walked will be
your inheritance and that of your children forever,
because you have followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly.’
“Now then, just as the Lord promised,
he has kept me alive for forty-five years
since the time he said this to Moses,
while Israel moved about in the wilderness.
So here I am today, eighty-five years old.
I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out;
I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then."
Joshua 14:9 - 11