Making Progress

I just get so frustrated.
We often speak of deeper things via email so that we can linger long over ideas, drawing them more fully into ourselves before we respond.
I feel that after so many years of following Jesus that I should have made more progress, that I should be more like Him, think more like Him, speak more like Him. Yet I still struggle every moment to obey, to control my temper, to love others.
Me too, Dad. Me too.
My heart feels heavy when I look at any given week and how much I have failed my husband, my daughters, my God.
I want so desperately to be like Jesus, to have love be my first response in any situation, to be grateful for everything that comes my way.
Yet day after day I lose my temper, I choose my own desires over the needs of those around me,
I forget to walk with God.
Have I made any progress at all? It certainly doesn’t feel like it.
Yet God tells us that creating a new heart is not up to us. We are not capable of changing our heart of stone for a heart of flesh, but God promises that He will do this for us, that He will change us to look more like Jesus, to be who He created us to be.
Will I believe Him?
Will I trust what He says more than what my physical eyes can see? Will I trust the Word even when contrary evidence seems to mount up higher?
…. it is certain that the Christian does grow in grace. And though his conflict may be as severe in the last day of his life as in the first moment of conversion, yet he does advance in grace — and all his imperfections and his conflicts within cannot prove that he has not made progress. ~ Charles Spurgeon
As in so much of this walk with God, will I choose to trust His promises or my own imperfect judgement?
Heart of stone
May we all push aside the guilt that we pour down on our own heads and say with the 17th century monk, Brother Lawrence,
When he had failed in his duty, he only confessed his fault saying to God, “I shall never do otherwise, if you leave me to myself. It is You who must hinder my failing and mend what is amiss.” Then, after this, he gave himself no further uneasiness about it. ~ Practicing the Presence of God
May we all trust God that much and give ourselves no further uneasiness about it.

4 thoughts on “Making Progress

  1. This post is just what I needed!! Going to read this again & again. I like your Brother Lawrence quote. There are definitely some things amiss in my life that need mending.

    When I read the line, “I forget to walk with God,” tears came to my eyes. That’s me. But truthfully, I choose to not walk with God, even though I know how much worry that brings me. Mostly, I neglect prayer. I choose to worry and vent to my closest friends & family when I feel afraid, instead of praying & trusting in His protection. Then I wonder why I feel no peace!

    I love this line too, “As in so much of this walk with God, will I choose to trust His promises or my own imperfect judgement?”

    I have been trusting my own imperfect judgement a lot this past year. Obviously, that’s not working very well. Thank you for this reminder to trust His promises!

  2. elizabeth, i can so identify with much of what you say. the truth is, the fact that you are sensitive to your sin and want to change is a sign of GOD’s work in you. not everyone wants to change. often they want everyone around them to change…or for circumstances to change or…whatever is on the list.

    i’ve also been considering lately the topic of self-righteousness. there is so much that flows from that. one aspect is that when we come to Christ for repentance, many of us don’t truly believe He will have that much to do to clean us up…especially if we were “good” girls. then we marry and find out we weren’t as unselfish as we once tho’t we were. with each new child, we learn how much we love our “me” time and don’t want to be interrupted…or some variation of that theme. blessings as you grow in grace. as GOD keeps doing His work of growing you. and as you continue to cooperate with Him in obedience. 🙂

    • Ha ha! YES. If I were a little bit better at self-deception I’d think that I get a little more selfish with the birth of each child. 🙂 Alas, I know that I’ve been that selfish all along, just wasn’t very good at seeing it. Each child is a gift in many ways, but they are grace in showing me what areas need more attention. Thank you for stopping by. Blessings on you!

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