For the last month or so a lot of my efforts around preparedness have been really focused on strengthening myself physically and spiritually. I had made time with God, prayer and exercise priorities in my life and I think I was doing pretty well.
I was working out nearly every day. I was drinking a liter or two of water each day and although it had not yet translated into a slimmer waistline (belly). I was feeling better and stronger. My endurance was up. I was pretty happy with my progress.
My spiritual life was doing even better. I was praying every morning. Not just a quick “thank you God” but really praying. I had a prayer list for my family. I was praying for my neighbors (http://pray4everyhome.com/). My prayer journal was filling up fast. I was reading and studying my Bible every day. I felt closer to God than I ever had in my life and it seemed like I could actually feel his presence in my life and in my heart. I posted Psalm 28:7 a few weeks back because that is how I was feeling at the time and it just really resonated with me.
The Lord is my strength and my shield;my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.
I felt like I was wearing the “full armor of God” and that my eyes and heart were firmly focused on Him.
The last month was a physical and spiritual high like I have never felt before. The sins and temptations that have plagued me my whole life held no power over me. My family noticed the change and so did others around me.
That’s when I hit the wall…
On Monday it started with a migraine. There is no way I can exercise when getting out of bed sets my head to pounding or when light feels like ice picks running up the optic nerve. With a migraine even stretching can be too painful to endure and was for several days. On Wednesday I gave into temptation and sinned, breaking a vow I had made to myself and to God. I don’t mean a random thought or simple failure either. I actively sinned.
All of that was just the lead up to the crash, “the moment when the brakes lock” and the slide into the wall began. The actual impact came Thursday. On Thursday I broke the same vow only this time there was no struggle, no fight. I was essentially flipping off the creator of the universe and saying “I don’t care about your commandments, I am doing this anyway.” By 3:30 AM on Friday morning I had been a real b@st@rd (‘scuse my language but I don’t know another word to describe it) to everyone in my home; my wife, my daughter and even my grandson. They were mad at me and I was downright furious with all of them. I was so mad I couldn’t sleep; so mad the blood was pounding in my head and my face was beet red. I couldn’t even be in the same room with any of them. I slept in a chair in the living room.
I thought about praying and I though about reading my Bible but I didn’t. I even laughed to myself at the very idea.
Within a 24 hour period I had turned my back on everyone I care about including, and maybe especially, God. I had spoken hurtfully to or about each of them. That was the crash.
Now, it’s time to pick up the pieces. I have already apologized to my wife and grandson. I’ll apologize to my daughter when she gets home. I have and will apologize because I am genuinely sorry. At some point, hopefully, they will forgive me and we can move on. To be honest, I am probably more upset about this than they are. My attitude and words were in all likelihood nowhere near as biting or unkind as I thought they were in part because I know the thoughts that didn’t make it into words (thankfully).
What about God?
I haven’t prayed yet (not really anyway). I haven’t opened my Bible today. I don’t feel like I deserve to pray or read His word. I don’t feel like I’m even worthy of asking for His forgiveness. I have failed Him. I have failed the one who gave His life for mine; who suffered for my sins, who has blessed me more richly than I could ever deserve. I turned my back on Him.
I will ask his forgiveness. I will pray and even though I don’t deserve it, He will forgive me. As broken as I am, God is good and loves me more than I deserve.
So, this wall cannot break me. It cannot keep me from my journey, from my path to Him…
God bless each and every one of you.