Saturday, August 25, 2012

Slumming in the slough

A friend recently commented that when I am not writing on my blog, she knows one of two things is the case-- either things are great and I am too busy to write, or things are terrible and I can't bear to write at all.  In the case of the recent lack of writing here, it is a mixture of those two things.  I have been visiting grand daughters, and preparing for the start up of a new school year- very good, busy, happy activities.  But like my old friend Christian from Pilgrim's Progress, I have been spending a fair amount of time slumming in the Slough of Despond and languishing in the dungeon of the Giant Despair.

It is a hard lesson to learn that joy is neither dependent upon nor resultant from the way I feel, but is, instead, a state of being. It is a recognition not of how I feel, but of who I am as a child of God, as one redeemed by Christ.  Joy is the fruit of fighting to live a disciplined spiritual life and preaching the gospel to yourself over and over again in the face of those things that would otherwise discourage.  And joy is found when you fix your eyes where they should be-- on Jesus-- instead of allowing them to fix on things they ought not to dwell upon-- our own pain and disappointment.

I am discovering that I have a long way to go before I can consistently avoid the slough or the dungeon.  But what I do know is that I am God's child by grace, and He can pull me out of those traps more times than I can fall into them.  Praise God, who is the Author and Perfecter of my faith. May you, too, know the wonder of His grace, Gentle Reader.

No comments: