Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Weight vs. Joy

It’s amazing to me that during such an exciting time where you are about to entire a God-glorifying union the ways Satan tries to get you to focus on so many other things to keep the focus off of how grateful and how joyful you should be. And its amazing to me how easily influenced I am that I let him succeed. There are so many circumstances/frustrations/people/thoughts being used to steal joy. And what is most frustrating is that it’s my choice to let those things steal my joy, to encompass me with distress/anxiety/despair. And that I have such an infantile sense of God’s goodness and such a lack of discipline in my prayer life that I let these things steal my joy away. I let them send me into fits of frustration and worry.

So thankful for this reminder from Laura (which she has given me permission to share) which puts me in my place about what a gift God has given me in this man who will be my husband and how truly undeserving I am of anything I receive and how abundantly good God is to me:

“One thing I was thinking: I hate those comments from people (that are inevitable) that I see you've already been getting. The "You deserve it!" comments. The truth is, there is no better time for lies to creep into your heart against your knowledge than during engagements. And that is one of those lies you have to fight your darndest. People mean well, but the truth is, you don't deserve it. It is a gift. God is good. But none of us deserve these beautiful relationships we're in with family, friends, or lovers. It's so apparent, quickly, in marriage how selfish and wretched we are, and how we don't deserve love from one another. So, fight those lies. Oh, they'll come from even your best friends. But, fight them. All of a sudden you'll feel yourself feeling entitled to something and you'll realize that all of those lies society says about brides are working their way into your heart. Your wedding will not be perfect, in the true definition. If your goal is a perfect day, disappointment will follow. You won't be able to keep everyone happy with decisions you make. Your engagement will not be all roses and butterflies. Coming together is messy and don't be afraid to let people see that.”

If my attitude is anything other than a complete and total understanding of the fact that God has gifted me with this person, then of course attitudes of disappointing others, dealing with wedding criticisms, and nitpicky wedding planning nonesense will steal my joy because Satan has gotten me to focus on the minor details and inconveinces of life instead of the major blessings that God has imparted on me.

Again reminded of Beth Moore saying:
"We are wise to force ourselves to keep differentiating between simple inconveniences and authentic tribulations. The more detached and self-aborbed we become, the more we mistake annoyances for agonies."

Is stressing over a wedding color an authentic tribulation?
Is freaking out over not having someone on the guest list an agony?
Not quite.
Is being fearful at the awkwardness of family interaction on my wedding day necessary?

Laura was right to warn me of this trap. Our society has created an atmosphere where brides are encouraged to total self absorption and I'm already being tempted in that vein by evidence of the fact that I am so easily frustrated by the minor details of a day instead of the major detail of the miracle God has worked in my life. The miracle of God bringing two of His sinful children together in a holy union to glorify Himself.

Praise be to God.

P.S. Photo by Leslie Talley.

1 comment:

Xaris said...

Dude, now that we've started registering, we've also start to notice how people want to apply the stereotype for the groom to Ben. He gets comments all the time about how he needs to get out of the way, and that on that day it's all about the bride...WHAT!? I don't think so. He's like half the equation! What is a union without the other person? Much more, there is no union without God making it happen. People are weird...