The story of my spiritual growth is analogous to taking a long trip in an old car. There have been smooth roads, deep valleys, and steep hills it could barely climb. Sometimes wind, rain, or fog that made it difficult to see ahead, and many breakdowns have stalled the Journey....sometimes for months. Occasionally, I get lost or miss a turn, accidentally or on purpose, and end up on a dead end. Never the less, I continue. There is no other option, no turning back.
The Bible is the fuel, it is high grade, premium, and free! It is also the map or GPS. It's the vehicle that has the issues, needing constant maintenance and repair. These come through prayer, counsel, and studying the Word. Sometimes, simply sitting quietly and waiting for direction is all that is needed.
I seem to learn lessons the hard way, maybe that's just human nature, maybe it's me. Some lessons need repeating, over and over and over..... Like being stuck in a traffic circle. Instead of " exit second right", I keep going round and round. Free will can be a nightmare for a strong willed child of God. He shakes His head, and waits for me to come back around to the second right.
The kids have taught me many lessons, thereby sparing a great deal of car trouble. Their faith is strong and true, never a hint of doubt, sure in God's love, Grace, and power. They pray expecting the prayer to be answered...... And it usually is! When Jesus said we must come as children, He was talking about my kids. They have a simple " God said it, I believe it" faith, they sing and praise and worship, they pray for others, they have a solid hope of Heaven and look forward to reuniting with family and friends. They seem to be driving a sleek new car with all the bells and whistles, no slow downs or stalls. I hitch rides with them when I'm parked on the side of the road in my old beater, steam rising from the radiator....
People have said they admire what we have done for these kids.....little do they know how much these kids have done for me. The stories of miracles, faith, and answered prayer are countless. They keep my faith alive and well. They also reinforce the message of God' s love for me. As a parent, I not only provide their needs, but their wants and desires, I love them unconditionally, and would give my life for them. Oh, there are behaviors I don't like, and then consequences they don't like..... And, it's true that it " hurts me as much as it hurts you". But, they will always be my children, I will always love them, we are bound together, parent and child, forever.
This is a picture of my relationship with my Heavenly Father. His love is constant and consistent. It doesn't change if I am on a straight away, in a traffic circle, or in the ditch... Jesus loves me.