It Is GOOD that I've Been Afflicted
When you can truly say, and genuinely mean, from the heart, “it is good that I have been afflicted”! I’m getting excited just writing this because for the 1st time since February 2017, this word is starting to make sense to me!
When I moved out to California 3.5 years ago, I was so full of pride that I was my own mini-god. Sure, with my mouth, I gave God glory and credit for relocating and upgrading my family to a bigger house, better neighborhood, better climate. But in actuality, I confessed with my actions that I was the originator of all these blessings. It was because of the job that I had and the hard work I did on that job. Shoot, I thought I was so great that when my employer bent over backwards for me twice, I just chocked it up to the fact that everyone wants me on their team because I am Reina and I am valuable beyond measure! It was because of the credit that I had worked hard to rebuild; forgetting the fact that I had to suffer and deny myself for years to obtain that credit score! I was so full of pride that it overflowed into my children. They couldn’t wear anything that wasn’t name brand, and if a pair of sneakers were less than $100, then they weren’t wearing them. That’s why today, my two oldest sons are having the hardest time dealing with this affliction. Because all these years, I was training them that success was defined as the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. I thought it was abusive for a parent to teach their child about denying themselves, humbling themselves, and forgoing instant gratification. Those concepts were sinful to me! And thus, I am now reaping what I have sown in this area.
So, I praise God that right now, even in the midst of my wilderness season called lack and delay, I can say, it is good that I have been afflicted!
I always think about how much better life is going to be once God brings us through this dry wilderness place and into a place of peace and stability. I’ve been fantasizing about this place for over a year and in fact, that’s why I play the lottery! Because I am eager to get there NOW! Some of ya’ll know what I’m talking about; wilderness circling sucks! Poverty sucks! Lack sucks! Financial insecurity sucks! But today the Lord asked me, “what do you think is waiting for you on the other side of this wilderness”? And the answer both hurt me and healed me. Pride. Sure, I’d be humble for a minute. Why? Because I’d still be riding high off the deliverance that He did in our lives. And maybe even riding high off sharing my testimony of how great I am because God saved me. (I hope you caught that easy backsliding into mini-god status). But that high would be temporary, not sustainable. In a few months, maybe a year or two, I’d be back to rebuilding the same habits, re-fortifying the same strongholds, that got me here in the first place.
I realized that I need to begin structuring my life TODAY for the “other side of the wilderness” life. First, I had to question myself, what does that look like? What does that look like for you? For me, aside from obtaining His commandment of being debt free, it looks like serving. It looks like helping. It looks like ministry. Because without those goals, I guarantee that I will be back to being a mini-god in my own sight and in no time, repeating the same cycle of being humbled under the mighty hand of God, again and again and again.
That is why He gave me Harmonizing Hearts In Christ. All this time I wasted looking for work in the secular world when God had already given me the work to do that will not only keep me humbled but it will keep me connected to Him! For some of you reading this, I am convinced that God has already given you the work to do! I suggest you find it and begin to do it NOW. I know I am. Why? Because even if I don’t get delivered out of this wilderness today, at least I will have rest in knowing that I did God’s work today! At least I will know that I planted seeds in the right ground today so that I will have fruit to reap tomorrow!