I have had a number of bigger-than-usual opportunities to say “Yes!” to God recently. (Wow!) But after the initial “Yes, Lord!” – when the real work of obedience takes place – do I do that without grumbling? Or do I continue to whine to myself that it is difficult? Do I want credit for saying “Yes!” to God, but still want to grumble about the hardship of the situation? I don’t think of it that way, of course. But that’s what’s going on.
“Yes, God!” I will marry this wonderful man even though it means still living apart for a season! I was glad to. Ecstatic even. And I still believe it is God’s will and that He will give me the strength to persevere.
But the internal whining! “I don’t want to shuffle between two houses.” “I feel so disorganized all the time.” “I want a place of our own so that we can start to set down our own roots.” “I want to be able to cook dinner for my husband and snuggle in beside him every night.”
Now, I’m sure these seem like valid concerns. After all, who doesn’t want to live with the man they just married?
But that’s not the issue. The issue is one of obedience. Sadly, it’s more than a little reminiscent of kids asking for a puppy. “We promise we’ll feed him and take him for walks. We’ll even clean up the messes in the yard!” I promised God (and my husband-to-be) that I would willingly live in this situation for a while. I don’t know how long God has in mind, but I know that it could be a long while. “Even if it takes a year or two” are the words I said more than once.
But here I am, only 33 days in, and already occasionally grumbling to myself that this is too hard. And it isn’t fair. And I just want… And why can’t I… And I deserve…
Oh my. Yes, I did.
Our Father has been so gracious to take care of me. He has looked after my needs in every conceivable way including by giving me this amazing man as a husband. And I obediently accepted the terms of His graciousness. I believed (and I still do!) that He has a plan. I believe that He will work everything out according to His will, that it is a better plan than can be accomplished by stomping my feet. And I believe that He will give us all the strength to endure in the meantime.
So why do I act like the ancient Israelites wandering through the wilderness? Jehovah just gave me what I asked Him for. I haven’t been wandering for 40 years. I have been enjoying this particular gift for fewer than 40 days. But I seem to keep finding reasons to whine about the terms I said “Yes!” to.
In this last week of the Proverbs 31 online study, the topics for today’s Blog Hop were supposed to relate to how we’ve said “Yes!” to God or how we have come to have a ‘heart at rest’ through our obedience.
But it feels more important for me to remember that we can whole-heartedly give ourselves to God. That we can, without hesitation, jump into the circumstance He has asked of us.
But when we do, do we continue to be whole-hearted about our “Yes!” or do we occasionally give way to grumbling as we work our way through the situation?
It would be easy to say that I don’t grumble much, and mostly only to myself. And that would be true. I could complain much more than I do. And more frequently. And broadcast it more broadly. But that’s not the point.
Saying “Yes!” to God requires a decision to humbly obey Him. But it also requires daily decisions (sometimes minute-by-minute decisions) to continue to humbly obey Him. And that means I need to stop grumbling. Even a little bit. Even just to myself.
Thankfully, God will help me with that if I continue to ask Him to.