LSOF: Full Circle

It’s hard to not know the full outcome of something. It is the plain truth. No matter who tells you that you will just find peace in the unknowing…you would not be human if you did not wonder.

But in the waiting the question asked would be…would you keep your faith? Would you trust that God has it all planned out, and has the concrete poured on the foundation before you ever step upon it? Would you believe the promise in Deuteronomy 31:8 :

The Lord himself will go ahead of you. He will be with you. He will never leave you. He’ll never desert you. So don’t be afraid. Don’t lose hope.” 

This is has been so much my story for the past few years. I have had many times where I would give up, and then start over again. When the race got too hard I would just stop running and walk away. But that is not the way we can take on life, that is not the way we will ever accomplish anything worth it.

I have lost out on too many possible accomplishments, relationships and my own contentment, because I would not just trust God. I would believe in some areas, but mostly the areas I saw Him move and change before. We have to trust in the unfamiliar too.

I really liked this message given by a guest speaker at church today. He spoke on the story of Mary and Martha and how Martha began as this pretty much type A, always in control, always the workaholic…to someone who had deep reverence for the Lord and what she could believe in her heart to trust Him to do, and without her help….and of course we know that He raised Lazarus from the dead.

I liked this story, because it was the realization that Martha was changed. I have learned this past year all about how God is within everything, and that His ultimate plan is to bring us full circle, or the best way I could say it in Romans 8:28:  We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him. He appointed them to be saved in keeping with his purpose. 

Something more interesting that I did not see until recently, that in order for Him to bring it all completely full circle that we have to let go of the familiar completely, or it is not really bringing all full circle, but semi-circle, because what we choose to hold on to will make the difference in who we will become.

Job came full circle, He started out very righteous, and very trusting of God, and then the Lord allowed him to go through so much trial and testing, worse then any of us could imagine….and there were plenty of times in his story that he just grumbled and asked God, “ why?” …At the end of the story we learn that Job recognized God after it all…He saw Him face to face.

So many stories in the Bible I have seen talk about this…most times people see God face to face are the times they are admist of the most trials…I can testify to that myself.

My ears had heard about you. But now my own eyes have seen you. (Job 42:5) The Lord blessed the last part of Job’s life even more than the first part. He gave Job 14,000 sheep and 6,000 camels. He gave him 1,000 pairs of oxen and 1,000 donkeys.   

Job also had seven sons and three daughters.  He named the first daughter Jemimah. He named the second Keziah. And he named the third Keren-Happuch. 

Job’s daughters were more beautiful than any other women in the whole land. Their father gave them a share of property along with their brothers.

After all of that happened, Job lived for 140 years. He saw his children, his grandchildren and his great-grandchildren. And so he died. He had lived for a very long time.  (Job 42:12-16)

We can look at our story the way we learn in English class. You have the beginning, the middle and the end….And if you were to put it all in where it belongs…the story would make sense. But without the ending of the story….it would seem like all the character goes through is in vain.

And in most stories, before it ends…there is always one last trial for the character to go through.

I like how Lisa Bevere put it: “ Stay the course….you can get off it early, but if you do, when you get back on it there will be a retest, and it will be much more difficult…so stay the course.”

I encourage you through my own experience to just stay the course. Just keep trusting God. Stay in fellowship with Him. Know that He has it all planned out…for GOOD.

Take in everything He teaches you and let Him examine your heart and clean up the broken places and restore them from the ashes.

And lastly, know it is not by anything we do that we can come full circle. Only God in all of it, only His Spirit alone can work the things in our lives and put back in order.

If we try to help Him, we will may find ourselves taking a different course.

The journey will not be easy, but I promise you, it will be worth it.

Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. …

(James 1:1, The Message) 

Anyone who meets a testing challenge head-on and manages to stick it out is mighty fortunate. For such persons loyally in love with God, the reward is life and more life.       (James 1:12, The Message)

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