1 Corinthians 3:12-14
If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13 their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. 14 If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward.
And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple 28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? 29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’
Lately I have been going through a real season of testing. Truthfully, I have been downright discouraged? I am still learning so much in my walk with the Lord and sometimes the revelations of self are unpleasant. I wonder if anyone else feels the same? I love my life but it has been overwhelming lately! So many needs and so little time. People dying and others sick. Marriages in ruin because of childish attitudes and my perceived inability as a counselor to help God’s people, not realizing adults are responsible for our own failures? Just wanting so bad to make a difference and wondering if we really are? Toss in the financial struggles, family needs and trials, and loads of other externals and suddenly one can be lost in the haze wandering without any compass at all. Have you ever been there? I have felt like a blind man groping for God lately and the biggest burden I faced, losing the breath of God upon my heart!
Two days in a row I failed to get up and pray and instead I laid in bed until I had to get up because I felt my prayers were not even reaching the ceiling! I was bone tired in mind and heart, concerned about many things I was no longer at the feet of Jesus just worshiping God.
A couple of days ago I just began thanking God and as I did I really felt the Holy Spirit drawing me into an awareness of the cost of being a true disciple. There is a great deal of resistance when your pulling souls from the fire and seeing the power of demons broken. I see my Savior so much more clearly as I press into Him grasping for the hem of His garment. I see the fatigue of a man who fell asleep in the bow of a boat in the middle of a storm. Exhaustion as a result of such great compassion and the overwhelming needs He faced while surrounded with such strife and hatred and resentment. His heart was tried and true and when we walk with Him He leads us into those garden places where surrender and counting the cost is necessary to take one more step. This holy God we serve requires sacrifice and surrender because these are the proofs we have received a new nature, indeed His nature as our own!
All of it simply reminds us of our absolute reliance upon His eternal graces which empower us in ways we could never obtain on our own. He knows the road ahead and when training in righteousness is required, He knows just how to engineer the circumstances to test the will to see if it is in line with His. It is then we find all that we think or think we know to be tested in the fire of His own cross! We are once again caught in the cross…fire and we will either conform to the cross allowing the fire of His presence to purify our intentions, or we will run from Him. Pressing forward when everything in us is screaming "RUN", that is the truest evidence of someone who has fellowship with God. He never leaves us alone, though He sometimes allows us to wrestle with feeling alone and it is then we walk by faith proclaiming the promises. A heart of gratitude shows me the way back home and thanking God in the dark helps me find my way back from those night seasons when others sleep, God’s people are alone and praying to the God of the morning Light. He has never left me yet. I know He never will!