Thursday, July 12, 2012

"grace for the good girl", chapters 13 and 14

On re-reading these chapters, it almost feels like I  have to go back to chapters 11 and 12, and ignore my agonizing over scripture interpretation and just pick up from the bottom of page 132 and read it again, because it feels like I've somehow missed something.


That perhaps, even though that I've experienced God's overwhelming love, I still don't quite believe it.


I remember that morning on the mountaintop (which I will blog about some day if I haven't already). The extravagant love poured upon me. Extravagant only because I didn't believe it would ever come.


And when for a while you believe that you'll never be worth God's love, it sticks. It's slowly getting unstuck, but there are days I forget. I trust in God more each day, and my actions, my worship, reflect that. On the days I'm trusting God, anyway.


And I remember His love more and more when my trigger of worry and anxiety is fired off. Some days I'm surrendering that fear to God sooner, and sometimes it's way later.


I think this is part of the long hard process of changing from "good girl" to "grace girl".


The read-along questions for this week's chapters are: 

Chapter 13 highlights the truth that we are a whole people. We cannot diagram our lives into segments, not really. Worship covers the circle, full. Do you struggle with the concept of worship in everything? In what ways are you beginning to see your living as worship?
In Christ, our safety has already been decided. By faith, we believe it to be true. In that case, our greatest enemy is not losing our salvation, trying to become worthy of love, or disappointing God. Our greatest enemy is forgetfulness – forgetting what we already have in Christ. Forgetting that we have been placed into safety because of him. In Chapter 14 we talk about setting our minds on truth. What does this practically look like for you? 
Intellectually, I know there is worship in every thing and every act. That's why Ann Voskamp's "One Thousand Gifts" is so powerful, it is a day by day teaching of seeing God and giving thanks for God's working in my life. In every moment. 


But some days are a struggle to see any gift, and other days, I am so full of my work that the day breezes past without me even taking a breath, without stopping to remember.


Now that I'm not working, there's less work to breeze through, and I stop for prayer during the day, which helps me remember Christ's truth. This morning, though, it was a child's wail echoing through my mind: "Five more minutes on the internet, pleeeeeease?"


Emily says in "grace for the good girl" that the first two steps (in chapters 11 and 12) are the hardest, but I think this step of remembering the truth of God is probably twice as hard and there's precedent for it too. (Or maybe it's twice as hard because I haven't incorporated the first two steps yet.)


Look at how many times the Israelites in the Old Testament forgot their God! Sometimes I like to console myself that I am in good company, and have more compassion these days for the fallen-away Israelites than I had in my seriously-judgey days.


And it's a process, not a case of knocking off one step on my to-do list and moving onto the next. It's growing into a new way of being, learning a bit here, a bit there, incorporating, living into it, and then learning another piece of the puzzle. Learning it intellectually, emotionally and spiritually.


So how do you remember God's truth?

2 comments:

Kerry said...

Appreciate your insights here, Leanne!

Girdie Fae said...

I love that, "not a case of knocking off one step on my to-do list" as if you were just another project to get done. But my favorite is that you "have more compassion these days for the fallen-away Israelites than I had in my seriously -judgey days"; this is true of me, too, but different...I used to be "compassionate" because I wanted even the Bad People to like me. I'm not so soft anymore, but I'm becoming more tender.