Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Thirty Pieces, Part 3

Yesterday I had to pick up a prescription for our daughter. Her perscription has been the same for quite some time and has remained effective until recently. What changed? Her activity level. I asked the pharmacist if my assumption that her body was now metabolizing it faster was true and if that was the root cause of it not seeming to be as effective. She looked at me, smiled her pretty smile, and said yes.

Armed with this new knowledge, we have to consider making an adjustment based on her upcoming decisions. If she decides to continue at her current pace, especially through summer break and the fall, we need to change things. If she does not, we just need to adjust next spring. Either way, right now, we have a plan.

But here's the thing. If I had not asked, and had just tried to overcompensate for the symptoms, the problem would have continued and nothing I tried would have worked. How do I know? Nothing I would have attempted would have treated the root cause. And without knowing the root cause, you can not find the proper solution.

And I wonder how many of us do that on a regular basis. We see something isn't working, we know it's clearly not productive, but we resist change and instead try to find every possible solution that requires the least amount of adjustment hoping it ends up having a maximum impact?

Isaiah 55:1-2 (CSB) says Come, everyone who is thirsty, come to the water; and you without silver, come, buy, and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without silver and without cost! Why do you spend your silver on what is not food, and your wages on what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and you will enjoy the choicest of foods.

Whatever we use to fix a problem instead of going to God to find the root cause and let Him give us what will truly satisfy, is worth exactly thirty pieces of silver.

In case you didn't know, the book of Judges has this repeating phrase: The Israelites did again what was evil in the LORD's sight.  And what is the clarification of what is evil? Worshipping other gods and abandonig Him. Or as Paul so eloquently puts it exchanged the truth of God for a lie. (Romans 1:25) And that's what we try to do. We use our silver to buy things that we think will solve, alleviate, or improve the situation instead of finding our satisfaction in God alone despite our circumstances.

Slowly but surely I am learning that Jesus is better. He's better than the exercise programs I've bought because the closer I grow to Him, the more I want to honor Him with my choices, which oh, by the way, means I eat better. He's better than the planner I bought (which I dearly love and helps me tremendously to stay on track, because lupus fog is real and so is the struggle) because the closer I get to Him, the more I want to honor Him with the time He's giving me to do what matters most, including down time to rest my brain.

But that realization wasn't my reality six months ago. Six months ago I would have tried harder, pushed more, and mentally beat myself up for not getting it all done.

And here's the best part. What God wants to give us doesn't require silver. It does however require surrender. It means saying that my vain attempts to pretty things up aren't working and I have been trying to replace you with something that is worth a lot less.

Until we take our final breaths, I don't think we will get this right all the time. We will fall into rabbit holes we didn't intend to or even see coming. But once we're there and recognize it, we can start stacking our silver pieces and get a little lift to see the light of day and ask for help to get out. Because no matter how far we've fallen, the invitation to Come always stands. We just need to accept it and let Him teach us.

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