For whatever reason, today, I have just felt unhappy. God brought something to my mind, and it has just been eating at me ecer since. Obviously it is something He is trying to use in my life to teach me lessons, but today I am just not enjoying it. And it frustrates me when things like that come up on otherwise nice days. I got to sleep in a little this morning. (Sleeping in, however, has taken on a whole new meaning since I became a parent!!!) The day was pretty laid back. I just cleaned the house a bit, went to get some groceries and have now been preparing to have some friends over for dinner. But in the course of all of this, some baggage came up and I find myself again trying to deal with it - AGAIN!! It is the again part that bothers me.
The saying, "If life serves you lemons, make lemonade" came to mind! Today I don't like that saying. I was trying to think of all the many reasons why I don't like it, and I think the main thing that came to me is that that saying indicates that it is all in my control. I should be able to turn the things that can cause bitterness into something sweet. Well, I can't always do that. I can put those things at the back of my mind and pretend they do not exist, but I cannot make them sweet. And the things I put out of my mind come to surface again in the oddest of times, and I can feel the bitterness and sourness churning in my stomach and worse yet, in my heart. But I do serve a God who make the bitter and sour become sweet! He wants me to give all of those things over to Him and allow him to use them in my life, but I have to be willing to submit to Him. That means I have to trust that He is controlling my current circumstances and my past circumstances, and while I can do that in my head, it is so much harder to transfer to my heart and to really live in a way that shows I am trusting Him.
The other thing about baggage and the feelings I have is the issue of forgiveness. I know that I have to forgive and I usually want to forgive. God has this amazing ability to forgive AND forget! I do not. I can certainly forgive, but I am not able, outside of a miracle, to forget. In a lot of ways I don't want to forget everything because those memories and circumstances are what God has used to make me who I am today, but I wish the remembering didn't also come with the obvious need to forgive again (if that makes any sense at all). I wish I could remember without feeling hurt or angry. I have come to realize that forgiveness is often an ongoing process. It is not always a once and forever thing. When we are hurt or angered (which I think is usually caused by the hurt), those feelings and memories come back to us and we have to do it again. In some ways, that is how God has to handle me all the time. Only, unfortunately, it is not a memory for Him; it is something I actually do, but he sent His Son for me so that all my sins would be forgiven! My prayer today is that I would remember what He does for me daily and be able to also do that for others. And that I would give to God the things that cause pain in my life, so that He can use them for good! He wants to do that for me and for everyone else, which is so refreshing.
On the flip side, I think sometimes God continues to bring things to the surface in our lives because He wants something very specific done. Maybe I am not responding the way He wants. If you think about it, pray that I would hear Him and know what to do, if anything, outside of my own life.
I think I would like to change the saying to, "If life serves you lemons, give them to God so He can make lemonade - the sweetest lemonade you have ever tasted!"