good stuff from http://www.desiringgod.org
" Have you ever longed for something you don’t have? Like never before, we can see what almost anyone has in all its jealousy-inducing glory.
We want, but we do not have. We work hard for it, but it is still escapes us.
“This Really Isn’t Fair”
After wallowing around in my self-pity over what God was not giving me, I was confronted by the words of Psalm 73.
Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:25–26)
It’s a good passage, and a sweetly memorable one, but it comes after much struggle, after a lot of wrestling. It is born out of emotional pain.
This passage is the climax of the entire psalm, but a lot has to happen before he can get to that high point. The psalmist comes to see God as his portion only after he sees the abundant portion of the wicked and wonders why it’s not his, too. We all struggle at some point with comparison and jealousy. Psalm 73 shows us a better way to process the seeming injustice.
How Do You Respond?
Those of us who struggle with responding to life’s difficulties should be encouraged by the psalmist’s response after seeing injustice and feeling envy. He didn’t burst into praise to God immediately. He began with questioning God’s purposes (Psalm 73:1–2), he recounts how he feels over the injustice of it all (Psalm 73:3–15), and then he takes action.
After he allowed himself to struggle, he begins to see that simply wallowing in the injustice will get him nowhere. It only leads to despair. So he runs to God (Psalm 73:17). It is only here, in God’s presence, that he is able to see himself and the wicked rightly (Psalm 73:17–20).
It is only when he goes to God that he has any perspective on his circumstances. It is only when he looks away from what his eyes can see that he realizes that his envious response will only lead to more despair (Psalm 73:21–22). Left to himself, it’s a bleak picture. But in God’s presence, he can see clearly.
Good to Be Near to God
This new sight and these new feelings lead him to worship. Turning away from what was in front of him, and towards God’s global and unstoppable purposes, helped him not only to praise God, but also to put away the envy that threatened to destroy him (Psalm 73:21–22).
The psalmist ends where we must end when we are riddled with envy, jealousy, bitterness, comparison, and frustration over injustice.
But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works. (Psalm 73:28)
The nearness of the Lord is always for our good. The farther away we are from him, the easier it is to forget that he is on the throne, that he has eternal purposes that cannot be thwarted, and that we are his beloved children. Sometimes it takes great wrestling to get us to the place of seeing him as our portion, but it’s always good for us to get there again.
At first glance, there is so much to envy in our world. But this world is not our home. The final chapter has yet to be written, when we receive fullness of joy face-to-face with our King."
a lot to think about in this article.
on one hand, pursuing this path gives me a lot of peace. i never knew, that giving up something could give me so much inmeasurable peace. dont think i'll ever forget that moment in the cab when i realized that God was working the miracle i had always prayed for, truly in a way beyond my imagination or expectation.
this article speaks to me because i used to think exactly in this way. no not in the admirable way the speaker thinks, in the part about wallowing in self-pity haha.
d was giving me some life advice and telling me to write about my Life Changing Experiences in all my applications and i was just like "hm i dont really think a post night epiphany in a taxi means anything to anyone but myself leh"
no dont get me wrong, i'm nowhere near the level of saintliness this article encourages one to reach. i'm probably still in the midst of wrestling with life. but at least it promises some modicum of hope, something one can reach someday.
to be perfectly honest, despite the fact that i really enjoy what i do now, and that i will be eternally grateful for graces and help i have recieved these three months (learning a whole new skill and trying to remember what i learnt 2 yrs ago in med sch is not easy!! plus the fact that i was never good at plug setting and now my daily efficiency basically depends on my plug setting skillz haha), i think one can never really know what God's plan is, or how life is going to turn out, until it actually comes to fruition
i also dont want to make the same mistakes of psyching myself up to love something and thinking that God is calling me to it, when he isn't really.
... ok crap too late. i love it already. oh nooooo. i really hope God is calling me to this. whoops.
siGH that late night conversation was way too thought provoking. i think i shld just have continued sitting in fever googling "things to pack for iceland in winter"
i think what i'm trying to say is that, we can't really conclude what is God's plan until on hindsight. there will always be days where doubt creeps in, when everyone else seems more qualified than you, when the plugs dont go in. on those days, God will always be there. somehow. but on the days that we feel peace in our hearts, we feel like we're in the zone, when work seems like play, when the plugs go in easily, it somehow makes it all okay. that it's okay not to have any great overarching ambition. that it's okay to no longer lead a life full of insecurities and envy for others. that just this day, full of happiness at helping someone, is enough.
'Cause I'm giving up, giving in
Once again a childlike faith
Is my only way
To see in the dark