For a while now I've been thinking I'm a hypochondriac. Every little thing would make me question whether I should see a doctor. A pain here.... An ache there... But I wouldn't go see a physician because I just thought I was crazy. Until recently...
I went into my yearly exam with lots of questions and the preface of, "Ya know, I could just be creating these problems." But the farther along we got, the more my physician spoke of tests and vitamins and treatments. I bawled afterward in fright!! I kept thinking, "I knew it! And now I'm going to die!!"
We have this diagram in our ministry where a train helps explain that we don't live by our feelings and circumstances - just like trains don't run by the caboose pulling the cars, our feelings and circumstances doesn't pull our faith nor can they guide us in our life. That Friday I was letting the caboose be the engine and I wasn't getting anyway except being more emotional!!
Within the next couple weeks, God showed me what I was doing: I wasn't trusting Him to take care of things. Instead of trusting Him and His word, I was trusting the very little I could see. I gradually made the daily decision to put Christ on the throne - to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18) - and then continued to ask Him to be in control throughout the day. And I can't believe what a difference it made!!
I prayed more for others on campus, and saw people open up, come to our retreat, hear the Gospel, and watch God come through in their circumstances. I saw that my small issues paled in comparison to others coming to know Christ! I saw more of the fruits of the Spirit pour out of me (Galatians 5:22-23), and an attitude of a servant conquer my fleshly selfishness (Philippians 2:1-12) - praise God!!
Heading into my ultrasound two Fridays from my scary yearly exam, I wrote in my journal, "I don't know what's worse: Knowing I won't be able to have kids and have an answer, or not have an answer and everything looks fine." I stopped. Leah, that is the wrong question! After putting Christ back on the throne, I wrote, "God, help me to respond to whatever I learn today with joy and peace. I don't want to be anxious." (Philippians 4:6-7)
And you want to know the coolest thing? God answered! Instead of freaking out with tears and lament over the discovery of a large cyst on my ovary (which is common, but I need to take extra precautions with my mom having died of breast cancer), I had peace. I praised God for answers, for His provisions and for having HIS attitude!!
The morning I write this I've been struggling more than when I first found out. So many doubts creep into my mind, and I question, "God, what a you doing? What should I expect next? Don't I have the excuse to act irritated and scared?"
And ya know what? I do just need to trust Him. I should expect Him to lead me and guide me into all truth, knowing that He will never leave me nor forsake me (Hebrews 13:5). I actually should react in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, hope and self-control. Because if we have God Almighty living in us so we can become more like Jesus (Galatians 2:20), wouldn't we want to let Him do the work of taking care of our junk?
Lord Jesus, help me to cast my cares upon you (1 Peter 5:7). Let me have your mind and attitude over my own mind and attitudes (1 Corinthians 2:16). Help me to live by the fact of your word over the fleeting feelings and circumstances that come in my life - help me to live by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7).
Leah works with Master Plan Ministries at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO. Other than watching college students' lives change, she enjoys getting her mind blown by God and His Word, watching sci fi, baking cupcakes, and spending time with her hunky husband.
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