When Your Spiritual Growth Doesn't Meet Your Expectations
Accepting God's Grace and New Beginnings
by J.M. Troppello
The last few weeks have been stressful. I have been more of an immature reactor rather than a mature responder. That has greatly disappointed me – especially since this was a major problem I had when I was a young adult. My husband has been very gracious and understanding during this time. After all, we all have issues, and he knows I've been patient with him as well.
It's been difficult dealing with my emotional setback in this area. But I know God's grace is sufficient. His power is made perfect in my weakness.
9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Cor. 12:9-10, NKJV)
God knows I'm not perfect. No one is. I just need to get my expectations to catch up to my current reality. I acknowledge that I've been experiencing more stress lately. That has significantly impacted my emotions. I realize that I need to walk by faith and not by sight.
For we know that if our earthly [a]house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our [b]habitation which is from heaven, 3 if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked. 4 For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life. 5 Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as [c]a guarantee. 6 So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. 7 For we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. (2 Cor. 5:1-8, NKJV)
I acknowledge that God loves me even when – and especially when I mess up. The main reason I feel unsettled is because I had a very bad problem in my twenties with reacting immaturely to people, places, and things when I felt like things were out of my control (which is silly really because I know I can’t control everything). God helped me so much with this issue through the years. I’ve had my days every now and then when I messed up and reacted immaturely. However, in the last few weeks it seems like I've messed up a lot in this area. That may not seem like a big deal to everyone else. But, to me it felt like a real failure because I've been failing miserably in this area when I'd made such progress years ago.
I need to focus on doing the following five things each day:
Cherish the fact that I am saved.
Trust in God's transforming power.
Embrace God's grace each day.
Allow myself to mess up.
Stay prayed up and study the Bible.
Have you ever experienced significant growth (emotionally and/or spiritually) and at a later time significantly messed up in that area? How did you refocus and get back on track?
Article syndicated by Mustard Seed Sentinel on Medium.com.
About the Author
J.M. Troppello is an author, writer, and poet. She is the publisher of the online Christian lifestyle magazine, Mustard Seed Sentinel.
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