I've been seeing this word everywhere lately without even recognizing it until just today. I guess God has to put things in front of me over and over sometimes to finally get my attention!!
I've been reading the crucifixion story slowly and with a Bible commentary for a few weeks now. Very slowly getting through it but trying to soak it all in. I am going through each of the four gospels and trying to imagine everything in detail. So I've seen the phrase, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit," four times now. I've also heard a mini Good Friday sermon including this quote. Yesterday, I randomly opened my Bible to the Psalms and it opened to Psalm 31 where I again read, "Into your hands I commit my spirit'. You would think that at this point I'd be past thinking, 'Interesting, there it is again....' You would be wrong. I read a great article this morning about Satan stealing your inner spirit and it was right on. I knew that it was meant for me. But even then, it wasn't until this afternoon that my eyes finally caught a chalkboard in my house of the fruits of the spirit when I FINALLY realized that God has been waiting for me to fully catch on to what he is trying to tell me.
The fruits of the spirit are:
LOVE, joy, peace, forbearance, KINDNESS, goodness, FAITHFULNESS, gentleness, and SELF-CONTROL.
I am so guilty of defiling every single one of these descriptions. Every one. This week, I have been a bear! I have bullied my kids. I have wanted to leave them (just for a couple hours but still, no 'forbearance' whatsoever!). I have snapped at the slightest annoyances. I have no idea what's going on! It's not 'that time of the month' and I don't usually get this bad even when it is. I have glared at my kids. I have yelled at them to stop asking me so many questions. I have even treated Jordan unfairly. I have entertained negative thoughts and have been overly concerned about what people 'think' of me. Issues I thought I had resolved. Conflicts that I thought I had put to rest have been coming back full force. I have cried into my pillow in the middle of the night. I have had nightmares. I have been sad. I'm ungrateful for what I've been blessed with. I'm selfish. My prayer life has been rotten and the only thing I've been doing right is reading the bible, but even through that, I find my mind drifting away.
Life is going so smoothly over here. There is nothing but good stress in my life right now. But I have been feeling lost during the day. Against my will, I try to play with the kids but there is little enjoyment in it. This is so not like me, usually. Bedtimes can be stressful occasionally and thankfully the kids have been going to bed nicely, but even at the end of the day, it took all of my willpower to give them some attention at bedtime. I don't want to read stories, I don't want to tuck them in, cuddle, pray, whisper stories....
It's so disheartening.
But now I am reflecting: I can control this. I am better than this. I am called to motherhood because Jesus believes in me. And I am called to commit my spirit to God because Jesus is my role model.
I have this ugly, imperfect, human spirit raging inside of me. Literally, I want to scream, I want to hit, I want to be alone. I don't want to read the bible, I don't want to pray. I don't want to study, learn, and work. I don't want to be convicted. I don't want to be disciplined.
But by faith I know that I need YOUR spirit inside of me. It has never been more obvious to me that I am not bearing the fruits of the spirit. What kind of a witness is that??? There is no proof of you living inside of me when I act in these ways. And forget the act... it has GOT to be REAL. I need to commit this ugly, monster of a spirit into your holy hands. Your hands that have the HOLES from the nails that HUNG you on the CROSS so that I would also choose to commit my spirit to you, in adoration of what you did for me. What have I done? It is this spirit of mine that crucified you. It is this monster that spit at you and mocked you and beat you. It was me. It is me. How can I feel this conviction and not immediately ask for your forgiveness? How can I keep on like this? And defile your name that is written on my soul.
I'm so sorry.
I can't do it alone.
Oh Jesus, I so desperately need you. I am so rotten. I have been giving the devil a foothold in my life that I hadn't
I will turn this into a learning lesson. I will talk about it with my kids. Just like how my mom did and does when she feels she has wronged me. I will pray over this area in my life. I will be open and vulnerable, humble and apologetic.
And I will try to do better. I will try to recognize the monster in me and remember the victory in you.
into Your precious hands, I commit my spirit.