Here is my embarrassing confession. The woman who wrote a study on entering God’s rest has fretted over trivial things in recent weeks.
We’ve spent our summer in a major home renovation. Since I love interior design, I thought this would be pure fun. But living in the middle of chaos is NOT fun!
I knew I liked order and a sense of control over my environment. I’ve discovered I need both. Without them, I’ve been distracted and indecisive. Can you say, “Frazzled”?
In a webcast with Jeff Goins, Gretchen Rubin said “Outer order brings inner calm.” I would add “Outer chaos brings inner craziness!”
The irritations that have nibbled at my peace aren’t major. But the accumulation of small things feels big.
- I couldn’t control my environment. Open walls allowed mosquitoes, wasps, mice, and humidity to invade our home. Hammering, drilling, and construction noises disturbed my quiet.
- I couldn’t control my schedule. Workers arrived early. My time was regularly interrupted.
- I couldn’t control my money. Unexpected problems arose. The cash in my bank account flew out like Monopoly money.
- I couldn’t control my privacy. My bathroom became the family kitchen. A second leak took away our master shower.
- I couldn’t control my health. A reaction to mold and construction dust made me sick.
I brought my jumbled emotions to the Lord. I reminded myself that the unexpected expenses, interruptions, and problems were no surprise to Him. He, not my savings account, is our Provider. My time is in His hands.
That day, a woman emailed me to say how my Bible study, Give Yourself a Break, had calmed her when she’d been hit with an unexpected bill. Her email bolstered my faith. God is indeed involved in the details of our lives.
With refreshed faith I saw the unexpected problems from a different perspective. The first leak had led to a project that uncovered a deeper problem. If we hadn’t been in this building project we wouldn’t have ripped out sheet rock to check for a shower leak. Unchecked, that leak would have caused much worse damage and expense. This was not an unnecessary hassle. It was God’s protection.
Our renovation also exposed faulty electrical wiring in the kitchen. This project has been messier, more inconvenient, and more expensive than we anticipated, but it has also protected us from harm and greater expense later. The electrician said it might have saved our lives.
Romans 8:28 has encouraged me many times: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good.” But sometimes, my flesh twists that promise into a finger-wagging taunt, “You should be thankful even though this stinks.” When God opens my eyes and allows me to see a deeper level of good in my unwanted circumstances, I wonder how I ever doubted Him.
Our renovation not only uncovered problems in our house, it’s exposed weaknesses in me. Thankfully, God is addressing both problems.
In what area do you need God’s perspective? Who needs your encouragement today? A change of perspective makes all the difference.
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Fall Bible study begins September 3rd. Sarah Bush will be leading our study on prayer using her book The Invitation. Sign up here.
Debbie W. Wilson