The flesh really is weak. Last week I almost chopped my thumb off while dicing onions. Thankfully, my fingernail stopped some of the impact, but I am not sure if I refrained from obscenities after this happened. It really hurt!
I have two reasons why I have not been posting as much, lately, on LE Woman. One reason is that transitioning to a new home, with still so many needs, has been time consuming. Not to mention, the month of December was very busy for Scott and me, as we celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, and several birthdays. (And we moved in on December 3rd.)
The second reason why I haven’t been posting as much is due to my spirit. I am in a dark season. And, if “faith” were something we could measure as a liquid in a cup, I could say that my cup is almost empty.
Don’t worry, I’ll be fine. At least I have enough encouragement to write this post, today, and I feel that there is a good reason for this. We all have dark seasons at one point or another in our spiritual journey, or in another facet of our life. I’m sure that you can relate in some way, right?
I made a promise to myself that my “blogging” would be 100% sincere and that I would be unafraid to write from the heart. This is real life stuff, here. I don’t want LE Woman to ever come off like “this is a formula for a perfect life” kind of blog. So, that being said, here is what’s happening during my “dark season”.
First off, I have not been to church since we moved. I loved the church that I was attending while living in our cozy tree-house condo for 18 months. It was just a few minutes away. Now, that church is 45 minutes away. As you may recall, I have issues with mornings 50% of the time, and so I know that I would rarely make it there on time. I need a church that is close to home. There was one Sunday, recently, that I was going to try this new church just a few minutes away, but I had a bad night and overslept. Needless to say, I have not been to a church in several weeks and I can feel how the lack of fellowship has been a contributing factor of this dark season.
In addition to this, I feel that I am going through some sort of a spiritual persecution. I’ve been disappointed and hurt by someone important to me. And, I feel farthest away from my heart’s desire than I ever had before. These occurrences (or lack thereof) are leading me into fear and temptation. Temptation to NOT pray. Temptation to NOT behave like a Christian. I’m afraid because I’ve been down this road before and it is not easy.
But, honesty is always a great start to healing and resolution. So, here it is…
I don’t want to pray anymore for something I feel will never come to fruition.
I don’t want to act like a Christian towards those who are persecuting me.
I am disappointed.
I’m aware that I’m going through this, and I realize that my humanness is part of the equation. As much as we are prompted to faith, we are tempted to throw our hands up with doubt, fear, and discouragement. I’m not sure where you are with your faith, but the bible does warn us that God’s truth (which offers life) is the antithesis of temptation (which can lead to death). I know. Pretty heavy stuff here. Thankfully, we have proof and validation on what we are going through. And, we have the answers right at our fingertips.
When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. James 1:13-18.
I’ll also admit that I am not the strongest Christian that I would hope to be. Some of this persecution is wearing on me. Not to mention, it’s more challenging to be in a marriage where my husband and I are not equally yoked (this is another story, for another time). But, I can’t depend on Scott to carry me in this way. Faith is not meant to be easy. The very definition of faith is believing what is not easily seen. (Do you remember my post called “Christianity is NOT for Wimps”?)
Anyway, today, I came across an outstanding article written by Billy Graham titled, “Do You Feel Like You Can’t Pray Anymore?” In it, Graham shares the story of Elijah, a prophet, who went through a dark season of doubt and fear. He refers to this as a “Broom Tree Experience”.
Right after God had vindicated Elijah by fire on Mt. Carmel, in front of the prophets of Baal, Jezebel had vowed to kill Elijah, and the contrast is incredible. The Bible says, “Elijah was afraid and fled for his life” and ran away to collapse under a broom tree. 1 Kings 19:3.
Are you familiar with Jezebel? Most likely, there is a Jezebel in your life, somewhere. It can be a person, place, or thing. It may “feel” and even “appear” very nice, but be careful; a Jezebel will take you down a deadly path. Here’s a good description of Jezebel, a real woman that lived during Elijah’s time:
Savage and relentless, this proud and strong-minded woman carried out her foul schemes. A gifted woman, she prostituted all her gifts for the furtherance of evil, and her misdirected talents became a curse. Persuasive, her influence was wrongly directed. Resolute above other women, she used her strength of character to destroy a king and her own offspring, as well as pollute the life of a nation. (See Reference.)
Wow. I sometimes forget that there are so many powerful influences in the world around us. Even Elijah (an extraordinary prophet of God) went through persecution and weakness in his faith. So, it happens to all of us. Thankfully, the bible confirms that God’s power is STRONGER than anything else…including Jezebel’s temptation.
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 1 John 4:4
The Lord Jesus came to Elijah’s aid, and He will fight for us against all our enemies, throughout every season in our spiritual journey.
Thankfully, I know God’s truth. I acknowledge that I’m going through a dark season. I have a Jezebel in my life right now, and I am tempted to give up. Yet, in my heart I KNOW that God is bigger than my problem.
Will you do something for me? Will you please pray for me? I know that God is at work because His word declares this, but I do not feel like praying. I don’t feel like going to a new church. I don’t feel like behaving like a Christian. I am tempted to tell the Jezebels in my life to F&*CK OFF.
Sorry. I’m just being real here. I think any Christian that acts like he/she doesn’t feel this way once in a while is not being honest.
I know that I need to get out of this dark season. Like Elijah, I want to collapse under a broom tree; possibly stay there forever. But, I know that God will get me through this. And, when that happens, I’ll write another post and remind you of just how AWESOME He is.
I hope that you are not going through a dark season with me, but if you are, I can still pray for you. Strangely, I don’t stop praying for others…even when I am too tired to pray, for myself. I appreciate the private comments and emails that have been coming, so please continue to remind me that I am writing for a good reason. I am surprised that I am going to post this, but I feel that speaking the truth is the first step to overcoming any problem or dark season. So, there you have it.