Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Challenge: Month 2

On April 5th, I completed my second month of no dating. Ten more months to go! This month was actually pretty staggering. God had a lot to teach me, and boy did the message sink in hard. It was a very intense month for personal growth. It's even more intense to think I have ten more months of these kind of lessons. Hoo boy! Anyway, I learned two main points. I learned about the nature of desire, especially a particular desire that's been plaguing me all year, and I learned a little about fairy tale love.

Lately, I've been reading a lot of John Eldredge's works. God speaks to me pretty clearly through his ministry, whether it be a section of his book, "Walking with God" or one of the Ransomed Heart podcasts. About two weeks ago, I had an odd urge, as I was getting ready for bed, to read the next section.

Bear in mind, this is not part of my routine. I've gotten into the habit of starting my day with coffee and a devotion, just so I can live out my day with His words on my mind. But for some reason, I had the distinct feeling to read the next section of "Walking with God" that night. So I did. And good gracious, it had a lot to say to me.

The section was called, 'Unmet Longings'. That should've been my first tip off. Eldredge wrote about desires of the heart, talking about what to do when the same longing crops up over and over again. He said that a common practice is to bury this desire. Eldredge stresses the danger of burying longings, writing that it is a slow form of starvation for the heart. God awakens these desires for a reason.

This hits waaay too close to home. I wrote before about how there has been a certain longing that's constantly been at my heart and no matter how much I pray for relief, it keeps happening. I'd started to shut it down, to close off myself from it. I quickly learned that this wasn't a good idea, but what was denied to me was the answer--what to do with this unmet longing.

Here, God pointed me to the answer. He forced me to examine this desire carefully and critically--something I most certainly did not want to do. But it woke me up, and I realized, that at the heart of this desire was a want for God. A desperate want to have God at the center of my life, my family, and all the things I love, both now and in the future. This seems like a simple revelation, but for me it was groundbreaking. My desire was an indirect desire for God. What a relief this was! Because God wanted me too, and He was using this desire to awaken my soul and answer my heart's longing.

The second thing I learned this month has to do with fairy tales. Bear with me. If you've been around me at all, you'll know that I'm currently obsessed with the show, "Once Upon A Time". People have been telling me to watch it FOREVER but I very foolishly ignored them up until last weekend. Now, it's by far my favorite show. It has everything I love--fairy tales, multi-dimensional characters, tributes to Disney movies, an engaging plot, heart-wrenching romance...sigh. But it does not escape me that there are several allegories that can be made from this show.

For instance: The plot revolves around an evil queen transporting all the fairy tale characters to a town called Storybrooke and ruining their happy endings. These characters don't remember who they are or who they're meant to be.

Sound familiar? Satan holds this world in captivity, convincing the majority that all we are is ordinary, piddly little humans with no expectation for greatness.

But the character Emma Swan, arrives on the scene, and immediately begins to change the town. Slowly but surely, the characters begin to remember their past lives and start fighting the evil queen to win back their happy endings.

Christ came down to our fallen earth and reawakened us. Through His majesty, we can fight sin and fight the Prince of Lies who tell us that we are not enough.

And that's just a glossing over the plot. There is sooo much more to this show. My next blog post will detail the episode "Skin Deep" and the allegories therein. See you then--and next month, May 5th, for the month 3 recap!