Do your kids ever pitch a huge royal fit? It happens more when they are in those toddler years, learning to communicate, unable to tell you what's going on. They still have fits as they grow older, they just change the way they look. Screaming cries turn into screamed words. Physical sitting on the ground and pounding turns into flailed arms and slammed doors. Most parents learn pretty quickly that you can't punish or reason with a child while they are in the middle of a full blown fit. They will neither respond to nor comprehend a conversation being had while they are in the unreasonable state of a tantrum.
After the crying has subsided. After the parents have cooled down and thought things through. After the child has finished their fit...that's when the discipline and consequences if needed can be dealt out. Sometimes they react to a situation the wrong way. Sometimes they have fits over something very SAD happening to them, like a change of plans or a toy breaking. I don't punish my children for having feelings. God gave them feelings and it is my job to teach them how to use their feelings in a positive way and how to deal with their anger and frustration in productive way. I never want them to be afraid or uncomfortable talking to me about extreme feelings...good, bad, scary, angry....
Bad, on purpose, hurtful actions get consequences, but over reactions and feelings...they get a listening ear and guidance. Because I know I have no less figured out this controlling my feelings thing than they have....because I still have fits myself.
As adults we've learned that society expects us to be in control of ourselves...and its only the traumatic events...the death of a child, or a spouse...funerals, tragic sudden accidents...when those kinds of out of control feelings overcome us again and people accept them. In the very worst of cases we can go into shock. But even in the more minor situations, things that set us off, make us angry, or really hurt our feelings...we've learned to control. Often that means keeping what we feel locked up inside. Hidden from others and sometimes even ignored by our own selves. That is how an "in control" adult is viewed. Out of control adults are the ones who publicly have a fit.
There is One however, who doesn't fall for our facade. He sees us having our fit on the inside (or as some adults still do, on the outside). He doesn't force the life lesson on us in the heat of the moment or while we have it bottled up inside. He's just waiting for us to be real and finally fess up.
I had a real big fit to God today.
And I am better off for it.
I had all these feelings bottled up inside. Fear, anger, things I thought I had dealt with. If you read our baby blog, you will know that we've been through two miscarriages in the past nine months. He gave me such healing through it. I learned many things about faith and giving it all to Him. I even had a full out cry it out come to Jesus prayer meeting him one day. Just like my child, who sometimes chooses the right way to react to a situation and I am SO PROUD of her.
Well...it seems since I have found out I am pregnant....again.... that I've secretly been building up to a tantrum. Little things kept nipping at my faith. Planting doubts in my head and heart. I've been doing crazy things (I won't give you too much information) but just know that they are little things...looking for reasons in the most obscure ways to doubt that this pregnancy is going well...when I really have no reason whatsoever to think that at all. In fact, things are going very well and normal as far as we know and various other situations are working together to make it even more perfect this time around. Which of course made me wonder...is it too good to be true??
All this just swimming around in the back of my mind. And today, on my way to our church to pick up our consignment sale money, I had a full blown, holy fit. Toward the Lord. I wasn't disrespectful. I was just totally honest. I realized...... I was worrying and trying to be in control. I had great FEAR of giving it all to Him. Why? Because the answer we got last time when giving it to Him, was two miscarriages. It made me angry and I didn't understand. Though I KNOW this to not be true, I guess I was trying to keep it within my OWN knowledge of going well (obsessively looking for signs) rather than just enjoying the moment. I guess I thought if I KNEW it was going well, then it would be going well. The truth is, I don't know if it is going well, and no ones does until they hold that little one in their arms.
Well...I told Him all the stuff He already knew. He knew I was holding onto it...He knew I was worrying and He knew all the stuff I was doing to drive myself completely nuts. He knew I was fearful of giving it to Him. I cried and said, "I don't know why I feel this way!!!!"
I felt like a child. A child confessing and reacting and not knowing what to do or what to say to the situation they are in. And He let me cry it out and He let me pitch my fit, and then He taught the lesson. The discipline toward those He loves.
I had done two days of my Bible study this morning. And His word never returns void. The words came back to me...one of the ten signs of living a crucified life: (Beth Moore) "You must forego your rights." I am looking back now and I even highlighted them, before this ever occurred today..."You may have the right to be angry, the right to be bitter...." Christ surrendered His right to come down from the cross, to avoid humiliation and death. The least I can do is let go of my right to STAY angry about what happened and instead surrender it to Him.
And the other thing...words ready for me when I needed them...
"Consider Abraham: He believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness." Galatians 3:6.
God is a great parent. He knows when to bring exactly what you need. He knew about my approaching fit... (parents, we know when one is about to hit, don't we?) and He planted these words when I needed them.
My children sometimes do the right thing. And they sometimes do the wrong thing. Just because they fail sometimes doesn't mean they've forgotten everything they ever learned and they have to go back to being a three year old.
I fail. I fail God. Sometimes it is easy for me to have faith. Sometimes I get angry, but choose to pretend everything is ok so as to appear as the mature Christian I am supposed to be.
But life happens and though we may fool those around us, we aren't fooling Him when we keep our fit just inside our hearts.
I know He isn't surprised when the anger, bitterness, and tears come out. We are all His children, and just like our own children who respond to things very differently, He knows we are all unique. We will never be fully spiritually complete until heaven...so growth, discipline, and learning will be taking place for our entire earthly lives. As long as we let Him. As long as we don't run in our room and give Him the silent treatment, pretending that things are okay when we come to Him in our prayer times.
I need to give it all to Him. And be honest when I don't want to...it makes it then possible to do that very thing. And I need to remember my goal in this world..to live a life full of His spirit, a life crucified...consider the cross and surrender my selfish feelings.
I am not going to let doubt and worry ruin these beginning weeks of this pregnancy. I am going to choose to believe what I've got so far...the GOOD report. I'm going to STOP looking for things to worry about.
I will BELIEVE God. He will credit it to me as RIGHTEOUSNESS, and what is better than that?