Life is school! We are learning from our mistakes every day. We are constantly growing, maturing and becoming our authentic selves with every breath that we take. Every day we are striving to become better, striving to realize our purpose and striving to fulfill our destiny. We are on a quest to bring meaning to our lives. Could you imagine the horror in having this one life and not really doing anything with it? Imagine if you will lying on your death bed realizing that you have not reached your full potential. That would be a tragedy!
I think like this often as I strive to become better. Am I making God proud of me? Am I a blessing to others? Are people becoming better by knowing me? Am I a reflection of Christ in my words and actions? Am I hurting or helping those around me? Am I working hard enough towards my dreams? Can I happily live with the person that I see in the mirror every morning? Every day I check myself and the days that I come up short (which are many), I am so disappointed. But I am not a quitter so I pray more, fast more, am quiet a little longer, think longer before I speak and just when I think that I have mastered the ability to pass a test one is presented to me. God figure. I should have known. Have you ever studied for a test in school and just when you think you have studied everything, you look at the test only to find out that the teacher has added a question that you had not studied for? You think, "How did this question get on this test? I am not prepared to answer this question."
This past Saturday I had made arrangements to do something and my plans begin to fall apart. I was so upset because these plans did not only affect me but others that I care about. I had given my word and I am big on keeping my word. I became frustrated and actually started to cry (I can be such a cry baby sometimes). In those hours that I was trying to fix the situation, I went temporarily insane and forgot everything that I knew. I forgot Philippians 4:13, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." I forgot Isaiah 49:16, "See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; Your walls are continually before Me." I forgot Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." I forgot Romans 8:28, "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." And while I did not forget the scriptures themselves, I did for a brief moment forget that these scriptures are relevant to every area of my life. These scriptures are reminders that no matter how difficult things may get...God's got my back!
In my minutes of insanity I failed to remind myself that nothing happens to me that God does not allow. And if He allowed it then it will make me better in some way and God will ultimately get the glory out of the situation.
I failed the test! Oh my God Lisa, how could you have failed that test! I failed that test because in that brief moment I doubted what I've always known to be true...God's got me...He loves me...All things will work out for my good. And while I did not verbally communicate my doubts, my tears spoke loud and clear. My tears were saying things like: "What am I going to do now?"; "This will never work"; "I am going to fail"; "God, why?"; "Maybe I should just quit"; "Lord, I really don't know if you can fix this"; etc. My tears were saying, "I'm tired" as if God wasn't able to give me strength! When I was able to composed myself and think as I should, I was so ashamed that I doubted God for even a second. I apologized.
What happens when you fail a class? You have to repeat it, right? When I opened my eyes on Sunday morning I knew that I would have to repeat that test. I really didn't want to but I know how this works...you fail a test...you repeat a test...and you will repeat it until you pass. So I mentally, emotionally and spiritually prepared myself. I promised God that no matter what, I would pass this test, I would make Him proud. And sure enough the challenge presented itself again and this time no tears escaped my eyes, my spirit was not vexed, I was calm and trusted that God would work things out and He did.
Family, you are going to fail some tests. You are going to disappoint yourself and others but don't give up on yourself. You are going to make it! You will be alright! You are becoming better!