Hindsight

 
It’s human nature to second guess yourself, your words and your actions. Hindsight really is 20/20. And as a Christian, I feel like every decision I make hinders on the reason behind it. Will this bring honor or dishonor to God? Am I doing this for Him, or for me? Sometimes, even the most insignificant choice leaves me feeling restless and wondering what my motivation behind it really was. (Beware- you’re about to see how irrational my mind can be) For instance, do I wear my regular mascara or my waterproof for church? I frequently am brought to tears during worship or a sermon, so I want to plan ahead. But, if I wear my waterproof, does that mean I am planning on crying, and wanting everyone to see how ‘Spiritual’ I am? Or, if I wear my regular, does that mean I am guarding my heart, so nothing truly affects me and brings any attention to myself? (Or vice versa- if I wear waterproof- am I ‘hiding’ my emotions, and if I wear regular am I putting them out there for all to see?) (I told you, it’s ridiculous the things that go through my mind). At the end of the day (or at least the end of the church service), it doesn’t matter if I have ‘raccoon eyes’, or ‘long, extended lashes’- what matters is where my heart is. If I wear regular mascara and am brought to tears, then who really cares if my makeup is smeared down my cheeks at the end of service? And who cares if I look like I wasn’t affected at all during the service thanks to my waterproof brand? God knows where I stand in my heart (better than I do most days). As long as we bring Him the Glory, it just doesn’t matter. And my mascara isn’t going to make or break my eternity or my ability to affect anyone else’s eternity either. But…
The bigger decisions really keep me up at night. (No, my mascara ‘issues’ don’t contribute to my sleeplessness, just my anxiety before Sunday school) It’s those big ‘life altering’ decisions that cause my insomnia. There’s been something, a task really, I’ve been doing for a couple of years now; the way it got started was in undoubtedly only by and through God. And He’s continued to guide me along the way, opening some doors, and closing others. It’s been a process that has been exhausting, yet rewarding. (Sounds like a no-brainer: continue with it- it’s ‘obviously’ God, but…) I’m to the point where it seems to be stalling out. Do I continue? What if the purpose of this was strictly to grow me closer to Him (which it has undeniably done) and for nothing else? Was all the time and effort, exhaustion and sleeplessness, anxiety and arguments just because I needed it? I won’t deny that it was worth it—but I also can’t help but feel a little bitter that it was an awful lot of sacrifice on my end to just benefit me. Shouldn’t others reap reward from it? And I’ll admit, there was a time, not too long ago, that I lost the purpose of this task from Him. I was pursuing it more for my gain, than His. Thankfully, He showed me my selfishness, and I stepped back from it for a bit. But I’ve felt the burden to continue on with it again recently, and I have. Why? Other than being prodded back by God, I don’t know. It hasn’t changed; it hasn’t profited anyone else yet; and has only left me more anxious, defeated and unsure than before. Is this truly from God? Is this truly what He wants from it? Am I really just being beaten up again for my own self-growth? I struggle with that. This is a lot of time and work for just me. And I want it to help others. But here’s where my mind starts (ir)rationalizing… After all this work, surely God will use this for more than just me. Surely He will use this for His Glory, and as a result, use me. (I will inevitably benefit from this). And the second-guessing begins… Maybe this wasn’t God at all. Maybe this was just my selfish wants, stemmed from my career desire. Maybe this was the devil getting in my head, trying to make me lose sight of Jesus… Maybe…
It doesn’t stop there. I can go back and forth all day on this issue. And unfortunately, I don’t have a definitive answer. I don’t know where this will lead. I don’t know the purpose behind the inception of this task. But, so long as my heart stays in check with God, I know He’s with me (Deuteronomy 31:6; Psalm 73:23; Psalm 139; Zephaniah 3:17; Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5) and He’ll use it somehow. (Romans 8:28).
Hindsight really is 20/20. I’ve seen the good that has come from this task so far. And later, I will see it in the current struggle with it. I just have to have patience (Psalm 37:7-9; Romans 2:6-7; Romans 8:24-25; Colossians 3:12), and faith that His will be done; not mine (Matthew 6:10; Matthew 26:39; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42). My advice (for what it’s worth) is to never stop praying about it. Continue to check yourself (Acts 20:30); your motives. Is what you’re doing or saying honoring to Him? Who really stands to gain from the outcome? Continue to seek His guidance, and ask for Him to enlighten you with the path you are to take. And above all else, just trust Him. (Psalm 18:2; Psalm 91:2; John 13:15; 1 Timothy 4:10) He created this world (Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 42:5; Jeremiah 10:12; Nehemiah 9:6; Acts 17:24; Hebrews 1:10), and you (Genesis 1:27; Psalm 139:13; Psalm 139:16; Job 33:4; Jeremiah 1:5), and He’s not going to let anything happen that won’t benefit you some way, somehow. (Deuteronomy 16:15; Deuteronomy 28:12; Numbers 6:24; Psalm 10:22; Psalm 29:11) The biggest benefit being eternity. Praise God!


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