In the last week or so, I found myself frustrated over encounters with other believers, where I felt and wished I could have been a stronger presence. In most of the cases, I realize now that then I was fatigued, worn down, and needing to take some time aside to come “back to myself”, I guess is a way to say it. Sometimes I do have to pull away, so that I can refocus my spirit and direction towards God. I get caught up with wanting to help, but the most helpful thing I can do is be perceiving Him as I try to help others. His Presence can help so much more than my feeble attempts. The last several weeks have been refreshing in many ways on Wednesday nights when I get to meet with some ladies at Chick-Fil-A. We have a good time reflecting from the week, have laughs, and then read the Word of God and talk about its application together. I always come away feeling fuller like I had a meal around the words we’re reading like I ingested a lot – LOL! I realized during the evening one night that I was actually bitter because I thought God wasn’t as hard on me as I needed! Like I would be the one to know what is best with that?! But thankfully I realized it, the fact that I needed His grace and that it was sufficient, and then really really felt that I knew somehow more for the idea that God’s grace is Big! I have heard it before and “Jesus is not as hard on you as you are hard on yourself”. I believe it more and more. He is abounding in mercy, patience, and can see down the road a lot better than me. I am so glad He is always interceding for me, and I am in need of His. His shed blood, His sacrifice, and His grace can more than meet the need of my idea of punishment for things that I perceive to be obedient or not. His Word defines what I need and what to do. I am just glad He does it!
14 “But if you have bitter (jealousy) and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic. 16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing. ” James 3:14 thru verse 17 NASV
I like the NIV version of the next 2 verses.
(James 3:17-18) 17 “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness. ” James 3:17-18 NIV
Also, this Scripture is a good one for this line of thinking:
“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 13:9
Pro tip for me: I learned several years ago of two great websites for studying the Bible, commentaries, and meanings of words I don’t understand. Those two sites are studylight.org, biblegateway.com, and the newest I’ve found that I like is Biblehub.com, as its layout is very simple, and because it has the quickest way to read (verses in the New Testament in the original Greek).