Failure. I think that is based on a FEAR that we aren't good enough. Aren't worth having good things happen to us. We've made bad choices. We've charged ahead in our lives, wrapped up in trying to succeed, into making a living, in simply surviving. And all our spinning and toil results in nothing but a pile of straw.
Heck, let's face it. Life is just hard. And sometimes, it rises up against us like a mighty wave, crashing down on everything we've built, worked hard for, striven to accomplish.
During those times, have you ever questioned if somehow you've done something to deserve this? Maybe the calamity in your life is God's punishment? I have to admit, I've had days when I collapse on my bed in tears wondering what I've done to tick God off. "Did I make You mad, or something? Where did I go wrong?"
Sorrow clamped its thick hand around her throat, threatening to strangle her.
There's a major problem with that line of thinking. And if you find yourself tripping along that trail, I implore you to stop in your tracks. Freeze right there. Take a deep breath. Gather in your rampant, raging, emotions. And stop listening to the enemy's lies.
Truth is, bad things happen. And being good doesn't shelter you from the storms in this life. It rains on the wheat and the weeds. Being good, or seeking perfection is like trying to catch the wind. I'm sorry, but we were created to be human, we were given free will to make choices. We will, and do, make bad choices.
But God has that covered. No matter what calamity smacks us upside our silly heads, God has a provision in place. Jesus said so himself: Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? (Matthew 6:26)
That last part... Are you not much more valuable than they? God see's value in us. He loves us. And He is good. So as C.S. Lewis says-
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:9
It's realizing that God in his infinite love, extended grace to his children and in return, when we lovingly give our lives back to him, we are washed clean and have a inner desire to show with our lives how much we value that grace and adoration he bestows on us.
In that little clip above I shared from my book Snow Belle, Haley had her big dreams and was charging full force to make them happen. I've been there. I have. I've made a decision on something I wanted to make happen and I ran full speed after it, only to end up tripping and falling on my face. A wasted year. Wasted money on something I was never meant to do in the first place. I could have bemoaned my bad luck, but deep down I knew what happened. I let go of my Guardian's hand. I picked my own path, never consulting God and asking what He had for me.
As Haley ends up finding out as the series progresses, God had bigger and better Grand Ideas in store for her. How can I write that? Because I've lived that. Once I stopped running, dropped my sword and shield and turned to face my Heavenly Father, my good and loving Father, I realized he had been hanging on to a big package for me; something even better than I could have imagined.
Don't be fooled, my friends. God loves you. He has a path established for each and every one of you. Not because he thinks your good or because you can do fabulous stuff. No. Because He loves you and wants good things for you. Open your eyes and see His goodness. It's all around us. If we'll only open our spirits to His promises.
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
“Lord, when I feel that what I'm doing is insignificant and unimportant, help me to remember that everything I do is significant and important in your eyes, because you love me and you put me here, and no one else can do what I am doing in exactly the way I do it.”
― Brennan Manning, Souvenirs of Solitude: Finding Rest in Abba's Embrace
Don't forget that Raining Fools is still available for the special introductory price of $1.99 until November 1st. Here's a little bit about the next story in this fun sweet romance series.
Bekka Winters hung up the phone. Ethan, her brother, needed her help filming a music video for his new music production studio. She stared at her already packed bags. Why not? She’d just graduated from college and didn’t exactly have a job to go to. Besides, a music video might look good on her resume when she looked for real work.
Stephen Gaines couldn’t believe Ethan had called him after their last blow up. They’d been music partners once. Stephen had ruined that. It was his expertise to wreck relationships especially those he had with women. Fortunately, Ethan didn’t know about him and Bekka. She was the one woman that had broken through to the deep parts of his heart. If only… how many times had he said that in the past? A fresh start is just what he needed.
Bekka’s mind bubbled with ideas for Ethan’s studio. Not to mention she couldn’t wait to see Ethan and Haley, the woman who’d captured her brother’s heart. But when she pulled into the drive and saw the familiar fancy car that Stephen drove, her heart dropped. There was no way she’d let him back into her life.