As I’ve traveled this road of back pain, I’ve sought the Lord for His purposes. Over the 5 months, I’ve had moments of great insight and yet wondering what I’m missing. I’m currently reading Nancie Carmichael’s new book, Surviving One Bad Year, (Howard Books), and she refers to the disciples walking the Emmaus road with Jesus and then writes,
“As the two disciples from Emmaus walked and talked, they tried to make sense of things, to sort them out. And don’t we do the same? We try to make sense of our experience, we analyze it: Where did we go wrong? What could we have done to prevent this? What did we miss? Whose fault was it? We can have feelings of failure, regret, and blame. And just plain sorrow. There’s a risk to analysis, though. Joseph F. Schmidt writes, ‘We are aware that by judging an experience we have classified its importance and therefore controlled its impact. In the process of labeling, we have surrendered to the analysis of the ego and have manipulated our experience.” (Praying our Experiences, page 44).”
Nancie continues, “In other words, not so fast with the analysis. Wait. Look for Jesus in this place. The One who promised never to leave us nor forsake us, will show up.” (page 48).
Nancie’s words helped me to release the need to “make sure” I was thinking of everything I should learn. Although it seems a noble quest (after all, God does want me to gain what He desires from the experience), it also had become a self-focused pursuit and a lack of trust in God.
It was a self focused pursuit because I believed I had to make sure the insights came. And it was a lack of trust in God in believing He wasn’t strong enough to show me whatever He wants to show me. I don’t have to make it happen; I just have to be open and alert to whatever He wants to show me, whenever He wants to show me. And the other day, without me trying to force something to occur, He gently poured another insight into my open and receptive mind.
It also occured to me that the inner transformation He’s working in me might not be fully revealed right away. It may be over a long time. I don’t have to see or know everything that’s going on. I can trust God to accomplish that which He intends for me. That’s what Psalm 138:8 says, ‘The LORD will accomplish what concerns me;
Your lovingkindness, O LORD, is everlasting;
Do not forsake the works of Your hands” (NASB).
God has a plan and has not forgotten what it is.
How about you? Are you trying to figure out God and His plans? Are you in analysis paralysis? Neither of us needs to stress. God is faithful to reveal Himself and His plan. Count on it!