I searched everywhere, determined to find wisdom and to understand the reason for things. I was determined to prove to myself that wickedness is stupid and that foolishness is madness. ~ Ecclesiastes 7:25 NLT
As a child we are taught what to do and how to do it. It is our parents, or those with whom we are placed helplessly, which form the mesh of moral fiber upholding the weigh of every thought we conceive. It is out from this generational goody bag where we must begin to discern: What goodies do I want from this gift bag or is really a goody bag at all. The truth is most of the stuff we have in our pretty cellophane is nothing more than a mess of broken feelings, opinions and knowledge which have little to do with God's truth. They are memories formed out from good intentions, and possibly, usually, good intentions gone wrong. The fact is, usually when we rely on a goody bag without holding it accountable to God's good ways, it is more of a trash bag in need of being separated into waste and recyclables.
At some point the child becomes the next generation and they are accountable for the gift bags they extend. This maturity / wisdom begins with a grown up perspective: Just because "something" brings me happiness does not mean my feelings are aligned with God's will: if a person, place or thing is really good for me and trust worthy. Neither does it mean that our feelings of unhappiness are accurate in whether something is truly good for us or not. The point is, just like a child, instinctively we do what we believe will make us happy. And what makes all of us happy is to have people around us who enjoy us, see how special we are and won't ask too many questions which make us squirm, or shake us up.
This is where we left off:
Without being shook, we will never realize we can be shaken. If we do not know we have a need, we can not ask for help. When we do not need help, we never look up for God. And with out God we are mere mortals......and mere mortals come to an end in this life.
Let's merge these two tracks: When we are doing what we believe to be good, even expected and we are not receiving the appropriate outcome, it creates confusion. It is as if someone is holding out a "goody bag" but there does not seem to be any good thing within it. Or maybe we feel that the bag is being withheld and given to others, when it rightfully is our turn to have a grab. When our happiness gets interrupted our happy train comes to a halt; because a train cannot run on two tracks. It is at this intersection we must pause and ask: what is the truth here, which way should I pursue. This verse from Jeremiah is a KB cornerstone:
This is what the Lord says: 'stand at the cross road and look, ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls'. But you said, 'we will not walk in it'. Jer 6:16Usually we do not pause, we go full steam ahead till something causes a major road block. God calls it a stumbling block, the narrow path which we and all our goodies cannot pass through. He lovingly warns us that our words and actions must equal, or we are not being honest with Him, others or our self.
What happens when a persons words and actions do not equal? Well......it hurts others.....and it hurts the relationship. It changes everything: them, you and the good that God had planned for you; because you are not asking what the good is and generously giving it. We hide these things even from our own heart, we allow our heart to become deceived; we harden our hearts to our unrighteousness, paint it pretty, talk it up and point it out with a bit of flair.
If we continue down this path, it will soon become hauntingly ugly. Our efforts must become dedicated toward: deflection, manipulation, creating a distance between the sweet relationships and activities God has blessed us with.....if we want to continue to believe we are doing what He considers good, that is. As long as we are doing something good and can give honor to God is it really manipulation, are we really withholding or stealing their goodies? Is it really something another person should speak up about? What about those who might be benefiting from our motives and who do not really question why they are receiving a goody bag, should it be given elsewhere? Is it their place to question a gift?
We will pause here for the day, I pray for wisdom and discernment in each of our lives. May the grace of God and His Righteousness bear witness to each of us this day.
In Christ, Kisses,
© Candace Huffmaster 2015, All Copy Rights Reserved
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