Friday, March 14, 2008

To Whom Shall I Go? He Has the Words of Eternal Life!

Sometimes I think my faith is wafer thin, riding on an razor's edge. I am just that close to chucking the whole thing and believing in nothing. Yet I know I would be praying to God all the more and even more understanding Peter when he said, where else can we go, there is no one else, no where else to put our hope!"

And yet, if you came to me in need of encouragement, a challenge to press on in your faith, I could answer you. I would, in earnest, remind you of God's providence, His goodness and mercy, the rightness of depending upon Him. And in those moments I would be completely sincere and completely believing in what I'd expound...for you. But not for me. Does that make me a hypocrite. I already believe I am a hypocrite. No needing for convincing here! But does encouraging someone to press on in the faith while I am tipping away, is that sanctimonious? Sometimes I feel I am more trying to convince myself rather than the other person.

I have this burning conviction that God is for others and not me. Analysis time...does this come from my childhood obsession that my parents adored my older sister and me-they tolerated? I remember my 12th Christmas. I got a bubble watch (they were all the rage) and my sister...a gorgeous cedar-lined hope chest. I remember thinking, "Well now it's obvious, they love her more than me!"

Deep down inside I feel like God loves others more than me and sometimes I feel when I confess this doubt I am trying to manipulate God (like I can!) to prove His love for me. Oh, I'm a mess and wonder, "Am I alone in my thoughts of despair?" I tend to think in that direction anyway - that my misery is unique to me and no one can relate which makes my pain even more miserable. But (and the reason I began this blog) I also believe we have more in common than we let on, because we fear we are uniquely miserable when we are more commonly miserable but too fearful to open up about it. So how about you? What words of encouragement would you have for me? Am I alone in these thoughts?


Viola said...

Perhaps its just that God wants some of the rest of us to carry your burden/assurance (?) for you. Sometimes looking to the past, to all the ways God has blessed and helped you/me is helpful. But His Word is the best assurance. He promises--He loved us before we first loved Him--while we were still sinners. You will be in my prayers concerning this. (I know I used to have that sister problem too!)

Paul Merrill said...

I'm with you, Barb.

I was thinking this week, during a depressive moment, that no one has this problem (a job-related self-esteem sort of thing). But of course, that's not true.

We're all in the same (fallen) boat.

Be encouraged that our Lord loves us better than any of these humans.

Heidi said...

"We fear we are uniquely miserable when we are more commonly miserable but too fearful to open up about it."

Commonly miserable. Yes, that is probably it. Sad, but true.