Grateful vs. Greedy.

If you'd like to know something personal about me, I keep a prayer journal.  Sometimes I just take a Bible verse that has really touched me during my God time and elaborate on it or, most of the time, I'll actually just write letters to God.  I'll look back through my prayer journal occasionally to remind me of what God has brought me through and where He has brought me from.  It's a great instrument to illustrate growth in Christ. 

Earlier this week, I realized that I hadn't looked through it in a while.  So I opened the journal and began leafing through it and skimming the pages.  I watched as my handwriting developed into the flowing cursive it is now as opposed to the crooked print I used earlier in life.  I watched as my letters to God grew longer and longer as time progressed.  And finally, I came to this journal entry that caught my eye because I could tell, simply by scanning over it, that I must have been oozing with joy when I wrote it.  And as I read through it completely, I reminisced on the time frame in my life that I was describing.

But then I read the last paragraph and a simple sentence that I had written just tore my heart up.  Because I realized that this sentence had been kind of like a promise to God.  And I admit, with shame, that I had done a very poor job of keeping this promise. 

At the time, there was this person in my life who I felt incredibly blessed to know.  And in this journal entry, before I closed it, I wrote, "But if You only give this person to me for a short time or a lifetime, I will always praise and thank You for this."  Upon reflection, I realized that I hadn't thanked and praised God after this particular relationship fell apart.  In fact, if you were to look in the next few journal entries, you would notice that thanking and praising God were very low on my list of priorities.

Instead, I assailed my Father with endless questions and doubts and fears and insecurities.  If He loved me so much, if He was supposed to protect my heart, how could He have possibly allowed this to happen?  How could I trust Him now that I knew what He was capable of doing, what kind of chaos He allowed in my heart?  He knew I had a fear of pain and I didn't deal well with letting people go and He knew how much this person would mean to me.  Yet He still allowed all of it to happen and it baffled me.  It just threw me for a loop.  I had completely forgotten about the little promise I had made my big God.

Through time, healing, and divine intervention, I now can look back on this ended relationship as a beautiful blessing from God.  I thank Him everyday for the opportunities He granted me through this relationship and the friendships that developed as a result of it.  

I have this motto that I'm trying my hardest to live by: be grateful; not greedy.  And that basically means to be grateful for the time God has given you, for the gifts God has given you, for the opportunities and blessings and people He has given you right here, right now.  Don't waste your time being greedy, wishing for more people, different people, better callings, or more time.  God has given you exactly what you need for today.  He's blessed you with exactly what He desires to bless you with.  And I can tell you, with a certainty that originates from the very depths of my soul, that my Father's blessings are far more abundant and fulfilling than the blessings we would choose for ourselves.    

Don't ask God why a certain relationship or opportunity didn't last longer.  Praise Him for the time you were given.  Don't ask God why you don't have the calling or gift that someone else has.  Use the calling and gift you have to praise God the way you were created to.  Be grateful; not greedy.  And you'll begin to open yourself to seeing God's fingerprints in even the most mundane situations. 

1 comment:

  1. This. was exactly what I needed to read. God works in awesome ways. I'm going to try and be grateful, not greedy, as well. Thanks for sharing!