Yep. Allowed choices. Don't you think that God could have created beings without choices? Then there would have never been sin. We wouldn't have to worry. We would be ... robots.
And the love and relationship that God is wanting from us would not be true love. You cannot demand that someone truly love you. That is a choice each individual has to make for himself and has to come from the heart.
This morning I awoke to something that re-opened a very old wound. Satan filleted that wound open with such precision. He knew exactly where it was. He knew the correct and most painful way to slice. The little girl inside me was devastated.
But at the same time, God had prepared healing salve and love for me. Already there were sitting before me acts of love and encouragement from friends. No one knew or knows about the other, but they were rallying around with words of love and encouragement in God's perfect timing. Amazing. Perfectly and totally amazing.
Now my choice was right there before me. I could have dwelt on the hurt. Decided that the hurt was more important and done the "poor little me" trip (which I know so very well) or I could focus on the love that God was flowing down on me from such wonderful people.
Satan was right there telling me how I deserved to feel sorry for myself. Look what I was going through. Poor little me. After such a thing, didn't I deserve some sympathy? Everyone would understand. You deserve to wallow in the ... what? Pig sty? The mud? I can't think of anything that someone wallows in that is "pretty" or "nice" or positive.
God was standing there. Really saying nothing and yet saying everything through His people, His friends, His loved ones. It was right there for me to grasp. So I climbed up in the palm of His hand and on my knees cried. I mean, bawled my eyes out. Not feeling sorry for myself, but for the release of pain when I gave it to Him and the thankfulness for the healing He had already provided. So joyful that I am so tightly held by Him and his Holy Love.
At the beginning of the book of Ezekiel, Ezekiel is informed that he is being asked to do something that is unpleasant at best. God asks him to witness to the rebellious house of Israel. He is told in no uncertain terms that it will not be the best of times.
"And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you dwell among scorpions; do not be afraid of their words or dismayed by their looks, though they are a rebellious house." Ezekiel 2:6
This makes me want to rush right in there ... not! Hey, who else would like to sign up for this gig? Would you like to go in where you are surrounded with briers and thorns and you get to dwell among scorpions. I don't know about you guys, but I am not a very big fan of scorpions at all.
But you know what? You cannot escape the pain and hardship of life on this little planet no matter how much you try. I have known some very, very wealthy people and some very, very poor. They all had sorrows, hurts and pain. They all struggled somehow, somewhere. The pain part is promised.
"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:33
As for me and my house, I choose the side that has already won.