We are Joining Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage today for Tea Time & Testimony
When my middle son was in first grade before we homeschooled and we were attending his parent teacher conference I was not at all surprised to hear the teacher say in a not very happy voice that he was a perfectionist and overachiever who always thinks he's right. I couldn't help but giggle at this actually because some of these traits I myself have struggled with on a daily basis and I am all to familiar with them.
As a young child I was always walking to the beat of my own drum. And even now as an adult and as a Christian I find this especially true even more so. I have found it hard sometimes to be different. And now a days just bearing the mark of being a Christ follower makes you stick out like a sore thumb and then throw in there dressing modestly, I do not wear makeup, and of course I like to sew my own clothes. This sort of thing has certainly not made me popular and is not always greeted with pleasantries. But sometimes the reality of being a Christian means that you will be scoffed at or laughed at for being different or set apart as the bible says. I find great comfort in the scriptures for being the unique and individual person that I am. There is also much comfort in knowing that God knows exactly who you are, you can hide nothing from him. And God excepts and forgives and loves us with all our faults just as we are.
Before I had a personal relationship with The Lord a dear friend asked me how I was doing with my faith. And my reply was when I got my life all straightened out and all my problems solved then I would go back to church then I would be able to speak with God again. What a relief that my friend was then able to share with me that I did not need to struggle on my own anymore and carry all those burdens myself and it was at that moment that I asked for forgiveness for my sins and began a new chapter in my life as a Christ Follower.
I have found this passage from Thomas Kempis to be very encouraging and would like to share it with you as a source of encouragement to enjoy along with scripture. It is a wonderful reminder that we need to attend to ourselves not in a vain, selfish, or worldly way. But that our soul needs nourishment from God so that then it can overflow and spill onto others with kindness, and charity and the same love that God shows to us. And it is in this, that we will begin to truly know ourselves and feel the grace and love of who God has called us to be.
This Chapter is Called
On Knowing Ourselves.
We may not trust overmuch in ourselves, for we often lack grace and understanding. There is little light in us, and even this we easily lose through carelessness. Moreover, we often do not realize how blind we are. We often do evil, and we do worse in excusing ourselves. Sometimes we are moved by passion, and mistake it for Zeal. We rebuke small faults in others, but overlook greater faults in ourselves (Matt.7:5). We are too quick to resent and feel what we suffer from others, but fail to consider how much others suffer from us. Whoever considers his own defects fully and honestly will find no reason to judge others harshly.
The spiritual man puts the care of his soul before all else; (Matt.16:26) and whoever diligently attends to his own affairs is ready to keep silence about others. You will never become interior and devout unless you refrain from criticism of others, and pay attention to yourself. If you are wholly intent on God and yourself, you will be little affected by anything outside this (I Cor.4:3). Where are you when you fail to attend to yourself? And when you have occupied yourself in countless affairs, what have you gained, if you have neglected your soul (Mark 8:36)? If you really desire true peace and union with God, attend to yourself, and set aside all else.
Keep yourself free from all worldly entanglement, and you will make good progress; but if you set great value on any worldly things, it will prove a great obstacle. Let nothing be great, pleasant or desirable to you save God alone, and whatever comes of God. Regard as empty comfort all things that derive from creatures. The soul that loves God regards as worthless all things other than God. God alone is eternal and immeasurable, filling all things; (Jer.23:24) He alone is the true comfort of the soul and joy of the heart.
Can anyone hide in secret places
so that I cannot see him?"
declares the LORD.
"Do not I fill heaven and earth?"
declares the LORD.
Have A Blessed Day ~Love Heather