A friend and fellow servant of mine has been in the midst of intense spiritual battle for many moons now. Attacks on health, emotional well being, and physical temptations among various family members. She has been on her knees constantly and asking others to do so as well. She wants to make it right. She is worn out and desperate. She needs rest.
My friend recently used the word ‘gap’ when describing her feelings of separation between truth and emotion. How poignant! Knowing God's Word, knowing what she should do but being unable to separate herself emotionally from the pain and suffering to do what she knows she should. Wanting control but not being in control. Wanting to do 'the right thing' but not knowing exactly what that looks like.
She needs a gap filler, THE gap filler. It is His grace that fills that ‘gap’! In His grace, and only there, will we find true rest. Not absolution of responsibility. Not a free ticket to do what we like. A willingness to let go and let God do what He must. A heart surrendered to Him knowing He knows best. Not trying by our own might to make it right. Just knowing that He already has....
We don't need to fix it. He has done that for us. We need to experience the fullness of spiritual rest in not feeling like we need to be perfect in word and deed at every moment. Rest from the pressure that we need to orchestrate every moment of life constantly planning and preparing to avoid the next catastrophe. Freedom to live our lives, love our families, and accept our appearances just as they are and as God has intended them to be (especially as Christians). Perfection is unattainable to us in this life yet we constantly strive to achieve it on our own.
Picture Jesus in the garden before His crucifixion… Few looked upon Him as being perfect yet He was/is Perfection.You just know darkness was closing in, the weight of the evil one’s presence, the burden of sin. Heavy on His heart and mind. He saw it, heard it, experienced it, bore it. He prayed, He struggled, He was obedient. He chose to submit all to the will of the Father. He let go and, because he let go, He bridged that gap for us then and He does it now. By His grace. Christ alone is THE Gap Filler. Nothing we do can compare or ever fill that place....
Strive for peace not for perfection. He knows your struggle. Experience freedom in Him. You are not expected to react ‘perfectly’ in every situation. You are human and of the flesh. He knows. He uses this time to draw us near and draw near to us. He knows your heart. He covers us, especially during these times, with His gift of grace. Embrace that gift; it will bring you peace. Experience rest in Him. It is truly not meant to be easy; it is meant to grow us in ways that are often difficult and painful as we let go and let God have His way. Your beautiful obedience will help you through the darkest of times.
I’ve been there, in my own ways, many times before. Those dark, lonely places. Gather together with like-minded brothers and sisters to pray and chat. I can think of nothing more important for this journey through despair than precious prayer and fellowship! Surround yourself with light. Edify and encourage one another and remind each other of His constant grace that overcomes our weakness and love that conquers all. His grace that fills the gap and shines light to shatter the darkness.
So, rest and rejoice. Repent and recommit as He breathes life and light into your life through His amazing grace. I pray for your peace as you become perfected through the pain and trial and for you to see the beauty in the struggle as you become more like Him! Praise Him for His goodness and grace!