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Monday, July 31, 2006

"Alrighty Then"


"There are two kinds of people: those who say to God, 'Thy will be done,' and those to whom God says, 'All right, then, have it your way.'"~ C.S. Lewis ~
Somehow- when I read this weeks quote.... I saw Jim Carrey playing God- saying "ALRIGHTY THEN!" (Which he never did... but it's what Im hearing;)
The whole idea- on both accounts, makes me cringe.
If there were to be a crown for problem solving- I would be it's wearer. My Husband and kids will a attest to that one. Give me a problem, and I'll figure out a Plan A, Plan B and a back up in case of emergency Plan C. If those plans fail, I will certainly be able to come up with a D-Z.
MOST of the time, this is a plus. Just not so much, when it comes to my relationship with God. I ocassionally think I have the "best plan" for things. And tend to offer God solutions, options you could say. I am almost inevitably surprised by His creativity in choosing a MUCH better plan.
I remember being a new Christian (yes, I still remember) and fearing for My Dad's salvation. (ummm he was pretty much an addict at the time- and pretty toasted (physically, emotionally and socially) by His drug usage. Then he became involved in The Jehovah's Witnesses. Things were not improving in my eyes.
I started to panic. I remember looking at the situation, and praying... "Dear Lord- I'm the "ONLY" Christian My dad knows- please help me get him saved" I tried everything in the "Christian's Guide to Saving Heathens" (OK, I made that up... there is bo such book, that I know of, anyway...;) Nothing worked- my "attempts" at saving my Dad- started to feel like a wedge between us, instead of loving my Dad where he was, I tried to argue doctrine etc.
Years passed, and I continued to pray- but I let go of the idea of "saving my dad." I decided to let Jesus be in charge of that one. But- in the back of my mind- I always worried a bit about "the influences" that were in my Dad's life.
My plan- A-Z was that as I was the "only" Christian my Dad knew... so, of COURSE, I would be the most logical one to share Christ with Him, or else it wouldn't happen. That's when I met God's plan -it was better as usual.
Years ago- while attending a party (thrown by his AA N/A friends) for my Dad's (something "big" birthday- I don't remember which) I was honored to meet the woman who sponsored my Dad. This little, elderly woman was tethered to an oxygen tank. But- I soon found out, more than air- she was full of God. She held my hands and told me about praying for my Dad- and loving him. And sharing Christ with him. FOR ALL THESE YEARS.
I was shocked. You mean God could use someone else? But I though..... I was... the only... Christian.....Duh. Tracey - plan A B C God--- Plan GOD. And again- I say, Duh.
I cannot really pin down my Dad's relationship with God- it has defied labels. But- I can say this, with assurance- God is making Himself known to my Dad. Often times- in spite of me. And my Dad, well- he is getting to know God. (Not as quickly as I would plan;)- but we're going with God's plan- He's pretty reliable, I've come to learn)
I'll admit, however- that sometimes- when I see God's plan unfolding, I disagree with it. Ummm I GET, that, that, is ludicrous- but I doubt that I am the only one. Sometimes- God's plan, just isn't "logical"- from my perspective.
I am by NO means a Star Trek fan- but I will admit to having watched it (or boxing or car races) every Sunday afternoon as a kid. And to tell you the truth- I have stood by God- Staring at him muttering that God's plan is "illogical". Much like Spock did to Captain Kirk, on ocassion.
In reading today's quote- I wonder, what makes the difference between the two "kinds of people?" In my experience- it's when I refuse to let go of my own plan and accept His. When I (try to) force my agenda. (not that I'd EVER try to do that;)
Getting to a place of acceptance of God's will, is (for me) often a wrestling match. Like Jacob- I wrestle with God- until He wins.
I may walk away with a limp from the experience of wrestling- but at least I walk in the right direction. In the direction of God's will. One of His greatest blessings.
Sometimes, we just don't bother with the wrestling .
We question- but we don't ask questions. Instead of wrestling with God- asking our questions as ugly as they may be- we question God's character. Not to Him- but to ourselves. Like a young child, pouting and angry over not getting their way... we say "You don't love me" (One of my youngest, Noah's -current favorite means of manipulation to get his own way- it doesn't work) or like another young child on the playground- we take our ball and go home, having nothing more to do with the God who won't play our game.
I am glad to wrestle- hot, sweaty work that it is. I'd much rather be surprised by God's better plans- than to turn my back and cease to see him or His plans all together.
I pray it's never God who says to me- "Alright, have it your way" (Alhough, the whole Jim Carrey as God saying "Alrighty, Then" thing could give me nightmares...:) But- that I will continue to wrestle (hopefully the matches will get shorter, when I wise-up and give up sooner and sooner!) and in the end I'll always say "Not your my will, but yours" As, Jesus did.
Dear Lord- I ask you to accomplish your will in this world. In my life, my family, friends and ministry- where ever your plans lead- I will follow, and God- if we need to wrestle again any time soon- go easy on my bod- it's getting old- I love you Lord- amen
ps- I love CS Lewis. Just had to throw that in;)

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