Thursday, August 25, 2011

Open Hands

Something I struggle with is claiming God's blessings to me as a right that I am promised. I have the tendency to take a good thing, and make it into the most important thing, to claim it as my own, rather than seeing it as something belonging to God, which He has given me to be a willing and joyful caretaker of. I reach out and take His promises and blessings and clench them tightly in my fists, thinking to myself, that since the Bible calls these things 'good', than God obviously wants me to have them.

That's a little abstract, lets bring it down to practicality. I read in Scripture that children are a blessing from God, that the Kingdom of Heaven sees children as a treasure and a gift. Having children is a good thing, a blessed gift. So I took that piece of wisdom and focused on it more like this, "God loves children and I want children, therefore I will be given many children by God because I am desiring things He desires." When my own preference aligns with something that is "good" than I assume it will play out in my life just the way I think it should. I place my own opinions as equal with God's will.

This is subtle and remained hidden from sight until the thing I was clinging so tightly to was taken from me. My baby died. WHAT?! No, no, God wants me to have children and I want to have children so I need to have them. That's what I want, so God must give me what I want. Right? Wrong.

The truth is, God does love children and does desire for His people to have them and raise them up to seek and find His Son, Jesus. But it is simultaneously true that we live in a broken world, in which things go wrong and against the original plan of perfection and health and life God had. It is equally true that God remains in control and fully knows all things, even as the world He created struggles through the curse of sin.

God knew Jairus would die. And it pains His heart. He loves children and desires for them to live. But because of sin and death, He knew He would walk my family through this valley. And He has not abandoned us, but rather has carried us.

And gently, God has been showing me that I was treasuring the idea of a large family more than I was treasuring Him. I had the idea that with a large family I would be more complete, more worthwhile, more loveable, a better mother. But that's not true. I cannot be more loved than I already am by Him who died to save me while I was still in my rebellion against Him. My heart is only satisfied when I rest my identity and worth in Him, not in any earthly relationships or accomplishments.

I still do desire a large family, but I want Jesus more than I want children. And so if we have more children someday, Praise God. And if we don't, Praise God! I have Him. And that's all I really need.

These crowns I've clenched with fisted hands
I cast them down before the throne
Of Christ my God the worthy lamb
Christ crucified the Great I AM