Posted by: Administrator | April 10, 2015

O’ To Be Like Thee

O To Be Like Thee

by

Kathleen Shore

 

As I quiet myself in your presence, my Lord, I ask that you would reveal to me a portion of your heartbeat on the topic of our writing this year… “Maturity In Christ.”

~

And in the stillness with Him, I felt a wave of His love crash over me as I heard the old hymn being sung, “Nearer my God to thee, nearer to thee… Even though it be a cross, that raises me.”

Being born the youngest of four children, I’ve always had a hunger inside of me to be older. I grew in a condition of always feeling “not old enough” to participate in the things my siblings were doing. When I did become old enough, they had all moved on to something bigger and better.

But Father God had a plan to use my earthly experiences for His kingdom purpose. That is true for each of us, His children. Fashioned for His pleasure, Father wanted me to transfer this earthly feeling into a kingdom longing to be more like Christ, willing to endure whatever He saw fit that would produce a maturity in Christ.

I’ll never forget one particular day some 20 years ago, when Father healed and strengthened me with a grain of sand thought He had when He formed and fashioned me.

I was dealing with the typical difficulties of early-married life that comes from two people being joined together as one, yet are still struggling with self-centered behavior. While tending to my household duties and feeling quite mundane, a childhood remembrance flashed through my mind. Little did I realize at first that God had brought it to the surface of my memory so that He could speak to me…. at just the right moment.

Father reminded me of the desire I had in high school to run long distance on the track team. As I pondered the remembrance, I was still a bit in awe of the ability to train your body to go beyond the pain of the circumstance and finish a race; the stamina and self-control it took to put aside the way you might “feel” and simply keep going.

Like viewing a short film in front of my eyes, I stopped what I was doing to take in what God was processing in me.

I recalled deciding to give the track team a try, pacing myself to allow my body time to adjust and attain the skill I idolized. Then, I remembered letting go of it…. followed by a mocking spirit from the enemy’s pointing finger amidst the conclusion that I just wasn’t cut out for it.

Like a typical teenager, I moved on quickly with all the other good things that were going on at the time. But it was for this precise moment, some 10 years after the experience, that God wanted His powerful purpose and timing to intersect.

With dusting pledge in one hand and coffee in the other, I sat down in the middle of the floor. As I felt Abba’s arms come around me, He whispered, “I made you to be a long distance runner in the spirit….” Oh my friend, His thoughts and spoken words are so transforming!

In the midst of feeling worn out from the rough terrain in my new journey of marriage, God had brought me right to this moment to speak clearly, a grain of sand thought. With one breath of holy oxygen into my spirit woman, He took the scalpel of truth in His hand that skillfully divided my soul from my spirit, and silenced my “feelings.” And right out of an earthly desire He focused me on His kingdom purpose…. that He designed me to be a long distance runner in the spirit.

It was God Himself who gave me the desire back in high school to be a long distance runner and my same loving Father God who withheld my ability to achieve it! It was the enemy however, who wanted me to buy into the counterfeit of that desire, attain it in the natural, and then shame me for not making the mark, in hopes that I would never catch on to the all powerful truth my Father spoke of me for His kingdom use and display of Himself.

Father was training my spirit legs to stay right with Him in this new found mystery called marriage and strengthening me to stand. And when I felt I had done all to stand, I was to stand some more and finish the race He had marked out for me.

I wept with joy and thanksgiving that I had failed to achieve in the natural the self-glorifying skill of what I had once idolized. Because it would have stolen the true kingdom treasure hidden in the darkness of the circumstance.

I felt God’s power come over me for the unknown journey ahead in my marriage as the enemy shriveled back in fear of the transformation that had just birthed new life in me through that moment with my Lord. All that I had wanted to attain in the natural was now a powerful tool for what I was called to live out in my spirit woman.

Our earthly circumstances are to bring us to new heights in Him…”His Way,” and likeness of character to be produced through that which pains and perplexes us, all the while He is proving His love and faithfulness to us with a steadfast hold within.

But this can only take place if we are willing to see God’s eye view in all things. As we learn to behold Him and what He is up to in our earthly condition of being “hard pressed on every side, but not crushed” the power of His transforming work to become more like Him will arise as our only want, our one desire, our true reward.

© 2015 by Kathleen Shore. All Rights Reserved

* Verses for exploration:

Ephesians 4:6

Isaiah 45:3

2 Corinthians 4:7-10

 


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