If you didn’t know my spouse, I would love to tell you about him. He is absolutely amazing. He is always there when I need him. He keeps his mouth shut when I need silence. He listens when I need to talk. He consoles me when I’m sad. In fact, if it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t make it through my lethargic winters. He keeps me pointed in the right direction and gives me the encouragement I need to keep going.
He is so helpful to call me out on things when I’m not keeping my eyes on the God. He keeps me in check …. yes, he’s my Check-Mate. To the point that when he calls me out, I can know that there probably isn’t anywhere to turn to get away. I need to accept his point and give it up. I’m busted. And we both know it. And I’m thankful for this direction, as painful as it may be at times.
And he keeps me in stitches. Almost daily I find myself laughing out loud at myself or others because he’s shown me something funny that I wouldn’t have seen without him. He definitely sees things differently than I do.
The most frustrating part of my relationship with God is that I when I mention His name, I don’t think people hear me anymore. If I shared with you how cool my husband is, you can listen. You may be able to relate. You may wish your spouse had some of these traits. Or you may wish you had a spouse. Or you may think of another couple that you know as I share about my spouse. But, you listen and can find some way to relate.
The “spouse” I spoke of above was Jesus. The Bible calls Him the bridegroom and I am part of the church (the people who are Christians … not a building or a “First Baptist/Methodist/Presbyterian/Lutheran”). The Bible calls the church the “bride” of Christ. Like many of the ideas in the Bible, this is way too big for me to wrap my small, human brain around, but I accept it on faith and understand some of the principles behind it.
What I fully understand is what I can experience. And what I experience is a friend who truly does listen, console, direct and protect me. He speaks to my heart, directs my steps and keeps me laughing.
Here are two great “check-mates” of late:
When Glory and I went to Myrtle Beach a few weeks ago, I picked up this totally awesome bracelet for myself James. Actually I bought him two, but I just LOVED this one. So, I reasoned away that I would keep it for myself, since I had another for him. Glory was good to remind me MORE THAN ONCE that I had bought the bracelet for James. But, neither of us ratted me out and told him that I originally bought the bracelet for him.
The FIRST time I wore the bracelet, the clasp broke. And I had to laugh…. out loud. This happens to me ALL the time. If I keep something for myself that God has specifically told me to give away, it breaks, crunches, splits, stretches, shrinks, stains, shatters or gets really, really lost for a really, really long time…. or even forever. It is inevitable. And I laugh, because this is ONE of the ways that the Lord communicates with me. He moves my heart. He directs my steps. He leads my hands. He reminds me of my intentions.
And when I get selfish, he reminds me that it’s not all about me.
I just have to laugh.
Here’s another good one:
This is one of my favorite t-shirts. It has my favorite clothing colors of brown, tan and pinks. It has some sparkly little rhinestone on it for flash. It has three-quarter length sleeves so I can wear it almost year round. And it’s a wrinkle free t-shirt!
A few weeks ago, I was doing laundry and in a slightly sour mood. I ask my family members to button and zip their jeans, pants and shorts, as I read somewhere that unzipped zippers create all those pesky little holes that turn up in t-shirts. Sometimes they forget.
So, there I was doing laundry….. zipping zippers on shorts and pants that had been tossed in the dirty clothes without being zipped. I was so frustrated … I said, “Forget it!” and I CRAMMED the jeans in the washer, threw in the soap and slammed the lid. “Who cares?,” I thought.
Turns out, I do.
When I put on my favorite shirt a few days later, I saw that my angry laundry tantrum had put three tiny holes in the FRONT CENTER of my favorite shirt. As I wore the shirt throughout the day, the t-shirt stretched and the holes were evident, noticeable and very distracting to me. And my silly, forgetful family didn’t even know about my fit.
I just had to laugh. I knew I was wrong to cram that laundry into the washer. I didn’t prove anything. I just showed myself how my own selfish actions hurt nobody but myself.
I am so grateful for a heavenly father that loves me. I’m thankful for Jesus who cares about my selfish attitude more than He cares about some silly t-shirt.
I speak of God often in my daily life. I share with others when the opportunity arises. I try so make it real so people can sense how real the Lord is to me. I want to share Him with others so they know that I am involved in a relationship with Him that is as personal and alive as the one that I have with my husband. But, I don’t think I do a very good job of conveying my experience. This is definitely the most frustrating part of my relationship with the Lord.
If you’re a Christian, what’s the most frustrating part of your relationship with God? Leave a comment or write about it and leave us a link.