February 27, 2009

The Reason for Our Blindness

While singing during worship at church several Sundays ago, my voice cracked. I chuckled to myself and thought, "Well, my voice definitely isn't perfect, but it's the voice you gave me God, so I'm happy with it." I have had some slight insecurities about my singing voice, not having as much training as those I sometimes find myself singing with. Right after I thought that to God, He said right back: "Zach, your voice is perfect for my purposes. If you were any worse or better at singing, if your voice was any prettier or harsher, it wouldn't be optimal for my plan for you. The voice and skill I have given you is perfect for my perfect for my purposes; worldly perfection is arbitrary. You needn't be insecure."

I feel like anyone can take home this point... that whatever your weaknesses, disabilities or personal tragedy, you don't have to be insecure because it was designed that way for a specific purpose: to glorify God. Your flaws and difficulties are there so God can use you- either to heal/dissipate them, to grow you to strength in them, to get you certain opportunities, or so you can grow towards Him. Whatever the purpose, it isn't pointless. This doesn't mean that you shouldn't try your hardest... it's not an excuse to hold back all that you can be.

Here's the first few verses of one of my favorite chapters in the Bible, John 9:

"As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" "Neither this man nor his parents sinned," said Jesus, "but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.""

The man is then healed by Jesus, and goes onto to witness before the Pharisees about what had happened.

I think it's an awesomely beautiful thing, to take anything in your life and know that "this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in YOUR life."

February 20, 2009

Breaking Free of Orbit

Every once in a while, when you really need it, God reveals something to your heart. Something that brings you a peace about whatever is bothering you. He provides you with a comfort and a confidence that He's watching out for you and has an awesome, perfect plan for you. In the past three weeks there have been two big ones that God put on me that I'd like to share, because they are definitely awesome witnesses to His provision. This is the first; the second will go up soon in a different post.

The first one harks back to what I wrote about a while ago: how God uses the broken people and their brokenness to glorify Himself in ways we could never imagine. The Spring of last year I had a learning experience (involving a relationship with a girl) that God used to cure my emotional naivety. I believe it was necessary to tame my very large and volatile heart, in a romantic way; to let me learn how to handle my emotions in that context. Then, in the Fall of last year, I had a time of wandering away from God that involved a relationship with girl. That one was different than the first, in that it was completely me making the wrong choice. I finally listened to God and got out of that... He used that experience to motivate me to a new standard of Christianity, to be in the Word every day for a significant portion of time, and to spend lots of time praying too. It was awesome to see God turn that around. I felt like Haley's Comet: I was traveling really fast in the wrong direction, but then the power of God, like the sun's gravity, slung me around to shoot back even faster in the other direction. He took something Satan was doing and made it backfire severely. I praise Him for that so much!

I had one hitch in my heart left from those two past relationships. I had learned that I was to wait again, for the right woman to come along, and then God would bring us together in His way and we would get married. I did that for the last three years of high school, and I finally got it into my head that I was going to be on God's time again. Not the timing of my heart; twice I listened to it and it only, messed up and hurt people and wished I hadn't done them wrong. I'm not condemning listen to your heart as it relates to romantic situations... I just had to learn to wait for the green light from God, when I could fully unleash all the love that's under such high pressure waiting in my heart. God's given me a peace about it, which is good, and wonderful, and helps me to wait for His time.

The hitch was this: that my past experiences might taint me and make me less worthy in the sight of that woman who is going to be perfect for me. I am still a virgin, but it was the emotional side of things that worried me, along with just the fact that I had wandered and had two girlfriends before. I felt flawed, imperfect and unworthy. We all are, I am, but God turns all of that around. I was talking to God and told Him that I thought my past experiences would get in the way, but then He told me (in thoughts and feelings): "Didn't you learn things from those experiences? You learned how to handle your heart, and then you learned how to pace a relationship. With those two lessons, you are now fully equipped for next time. You will use this knowledge to guide your next, ultimate, beautiful romantic relationship with your future wife, and it will be better than it could have been if you did not have those lessons with you. It's more perfect now. I have used Satan's plans against him again." That brought me a complete peace about the situation. I no longer felt unworthy. I felt prepared by and loved by God. Now, I'm just waiting and waiting... contentedly and unhurriedly.