hope and disappointment

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I haven't blogged in awhile; I've been feeling pretty run-down and blogging seems to take so much emotional energy for me. I had high hopes for increasing my blog posts, but now I feel like I've let myself down. I've been reminded lately of how much I set myself up to be disappointed...last week I received some disappointing news regarding one of the aspects of our foster care paperwork. It wasn't that big of a deal and was easily fixed, but I just felt so let down. It was something that I was depending on someone else for, and it just didn't pan out in the way I expected.

This week, I received disappointing news about my health. I thought things were in a really different place regarding my thyroid issues...well, I knew I was still sick, but for some reason, I had put it in my head that when I visited the doctor this week that he would make me well again. I'm not sure why I've been believing this; it's not like he's magic...nevertheless, there it was, that hope I had for him. Once again, I left feeling tremendously discouraged and let down. I had really pinned all my hopes and plans on this one doctor's visit, kind of just ignoring what was actually going on in my body.

I know the reason for all this disappointment - it's misplaced hope. I had hope in other people for my application, I had hope in the doctor for my health, I had hope in myself for accomplishing my lists...all that hope that I'm placing everything and anywhere but in God. So the only thing on my list this week (and forever, really) is to put my hope in God and Him only. Yes, I know he uses other people and medicine and my abilities to get things done, but if I rely on those things without really seeking Him about those things, then I'm missing the point. I think I tend to compartmentalize, thinking, 'hey, God gave me medicine, it will eventually make me better and thus, I do not need to bother Him with this issue anymore., Or...'God called me to do this job, He gave me these specific abilities, and thus, I do not need to ask Him about it anymore.'

Now that I write this stuff out, I realize how ridiculous I sound. It's not like I stopped seeking God or spending time with Him, it's just like I have made my life a list of problems/needs and solutions. I have a pattern:
1) I consult God about these issues.
2) As soon as I feel He's given some sort of answer, I mark it down in the "solution" column. Even if it's not solved completely, I take what He's shown me as the final solution.
3) I mark it off the list completely, never to bother Him with it again.

Clearly this a pattern that is not working in my life. And the only way I'm going to make it through life, and especially this adoption journey, intact is to establish new thinking patterns.

New pattern:
1) Lay down my pride (thanks Jeremy Camp). It's embarrassing to admit that maybe what I thought God was telling me wasn't His final word to me in those situations. It's embarrassing to admit that I only sought His input to a certain point. It's embarrassing to admit my health weaknesses. I hate being weak or wrong. But now I have this step:
Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10

2) Seek God about ALL my needs, problems, life...continually...remembering this step:
I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.
John 15:5
Side note: it doesn't say "look to me, find your answer, and then go merrily along your way"...it says, "remain in me".

3) Put my hope for my solutions in God and God alone.
Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you. Remember, O Lord, your compassion and unfailing love, which you have shown from long ages past.
Psalm 25:4-6

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