Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Decision time

I'm getting tired of how hard it is for me to make even small, relatively unconsequential decisions, such as choosing what to wear to work or to church or to wherever I happen to be going. Talking to a friend about this on Sunday, I realized I am inhibited by what I think people will think about me or how I will look to others. I can say I know it really doesn't matter what other people think and acknowledge that most people don't even notice and surely don't judge -- but it's much harder to let go of that driving force.

I don't know how this became so ingrained in my decisionmaking (and in my struggle to make decisions), but I am increasingly aware of it. And it's not just about what to wear. It's what to do, what to do first, what to say, whether to go somewhere, what to eat -- I'm always thinking ahead to what might be the outcome, how will it affect others, and, ultimately, what will people think. This "how will it affect others" part could be mistaken for sensitivity, but more recently I've noticed that it, like the other concerns, is mostly rooted in perfectionism, insecurity, fear and pride.

Fortunately, I believe awareness is the first step before change is possible. Unfortunately, my experience is often that the awareness phase sometimes continues a long, long time before I see much change. But I can hope!

I do hope.

And I am taking action.

During these early days of 2014 that have started with a "First 15" of time alone with God, I've encountered afresh Scriptures and other readings that remind me of God's great love -- love from which nothing can separate me; love which I have done nothing and can do nothing to deserve; love that is beyond my ability to describe or measure; love that conquers sin and death and meets all my needs.

All I have to do is receive it -- let it flow into me and fill me and overflow from me.

That seems so simple, but if so, why didn't I do it a long time ago? Why am I still struggling to really feel God's love in such a way that all fear and doubt are gone, and that I can live joyously and confidently in His will and to His glory?

I don't have to know why. I am grateful to know that this moment, this single moment, I am closer. It is a constant choice: Will I be still and let God's love fill me, or will I look around and try to find something else with which to fill this searching soul and longing heart?

One day, 15 minutes, one moment at a time, I pray to choose God's great love.

"You make known to me the path of life; 
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
 at your right hand are pleasures forevermore." Psalm 16:11

"The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing." Zephaniah 3:17

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