Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Writing Together

When I came to this country I thought I was a Christian.

Before I left we spoke of grace, peace, God's love for us. Since I have been here, God has systematically stripped away my supports, my comforts, and all things familiar. I have been shown my selfishness in areas such as control of circumstances and in demanding emotional support (instead of giving it). Whereas I expected God to HELP me with OUR deployment project (and I had a pretty good idea how He could do it), He had different plans. For instance, of course God needed to protect my wife and me, then there was the matter of Him making it possible for us to talk all the time... God, however, wasn't as concerned with the relationship between me and my wife as He was with my relationship to Him.

God has used this last month to teach Andrew and I so much about His love and what that really means. We've learned how to love each other more and better as we begin to understand the nuances of God's grace. The lyrics from one of Keith Green's songs come to mind:

"I pledge my wife to heaven for the Gospel,
Though our love each passing day just seems to grow!
As I told her when we wed, I'd surely rather be found dead
Than to love her more than the One Who saved my soul."

I used to puzzle over these words and wonder if Keith's wife even liked this song? Or if it made her feel unimportant or unloved or second-rate in her husband's eyes?

Now I know it's just the opposite. When my husband lays me on the altar of his faith, and learns to love the Lord His God more than he loves me, that only gives me an overwhelming sense of peace, security, and contentment... and it gives him a greater and purer love for me.

He is the Rock that I am being thrown onto, and I find myself wanting to stay dashed on that Rock. Admitting that I have nothing to stand on but His mercy, and giving Him the decisions, turns of events, pains, fears, worries, and hard decisions that I face. Over and above that, however, I want to camp out on the fact that I don't own myself and that I can NOT earn anything from God.

It turns out that I AM a Christian, because the Lord corrects the sons He loves. He graciously did not allow me to continue in my error, but has poked, prodded, and allowed me to mess up enough to get my attention. God is breaking me.

I read this quote today and it describes what this deployment means to me: "God puts a knife to our self-sufficiency. He wants to be a part of our identity, our intimacy, and even our potency."

And this is just the first month! We know that the Holy Spirit is at work in our lives because we feel the heat of the refining fire. Yes, even across the world from each other! He loves us too much to leave us as we were. And as we still are. I am so blessed (it's not even a strong enough word!) to have been given a man so dedicated to finding God's will, and so willing to accept it and lead us in it.

Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take,
The clouds ye so much dread
are big with mercy, and shall break
In blessings on your head.

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust him for his grace;
Behind a frowning providence,
He hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.

(William Cowper - God Moves In Mysterious Ways)


Abby said...

wow, Andrew and Cass, that brings tears to my eyes to read this. We serve an awesome God. One who desires intimacy with his children. One who so deeply cares about the smallest details of our hearts and lives. God is so good to you two. He loves you SO much and you're letting Him use this time to purify and refine you and draw you nearer and nearer to Him. DRAW NEAR and HOLD FAST! Love you......

rosannabud said...

Interesting concept in that Keith Green song... this was one of the first thoughts that R and I talked deeply about after "getting together" and you might remember that I mentioned it in my statement of love to him during our wedding ceremony. It's amazing how I feel MOST loved when I'm loved SECOND-best! To have a man who understands that... THAT is blessedness.

Nice song, by the way. ;)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...