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Stirring The Deep

God’s Workmanship, Not Ours

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God’s Workmanship, Not Ours

 

One of the most difficult areas for me to learn to trust in God has been internal change. I am bit of a perfectionist . . . and when I don’t like something about myself I try my best to fix it. Before God became the center of my life, I was a slave to self-improvement. I tried endlessly to be a better and stronger person prompted from a past that left me passive, withdrawn, defensive and closed off.

I can fix me. How hard can it be? Isn’t that the one thing we do control? Isn’t that what the billion dollar industry of self-help is all about? In my stubbornness and impatience of wanting to be different right now, for years I carried the burden of trying to change and never sought God’s help. The uncertainty of His timing and if He would help at all was too great a risk. Sure, I would superficially ask for His help, but I continued to hold on to and trust my latest instant gratification scheme. We either trust Him or ourselves. Blindly, I opted for me because I didn’t know Him enough to trust Him.

As the years passed, I set out to know Him. Then one day the power of these verses drew me in and set me free from the endless unsuccessful attempts to inner transformations.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Psalm 29:1-2a Give unto the Lord, O you mighty ones, Give unto the Lord glory and strength. 2 Give unto the Lord the glory due to His name;

God showed me how tightly I was holding onto my power to change and not attributing power to Him. He was the one to work in me and I needed to trust in His power to do so and stop trying to develop my own strength and glory. With this new awareness and finally admitting my efforts had been in vain, I vowed to stop. I started to sincerely ask for His help.

Surrendering to His timing and His methods wasn’t easy. It felt like letting go of a steering wheel going 60 miles an hour and trusting someone you can’t see to grab a hold. But I got rid of all my books, stopped trying to do it myself and let Him take the wheel. He probed into the depths of my soul and traversed places I didn’t know existed. He went to my core and worked outward. In time, I started to change for the first time, one layer at a time. My soul has become a fountain of praise for all the afflictions He has healed. Once I saw His work in a few areas it became easier to trust Him with the rest.

We, the problem, can’t fix ourselves because we are the problem. We can masquerade temporary alterations, but true change is only possible by someone outside ourselves who is bigger and more powerful working in us. We go to the symptoms and God goes to the core, a core whose details we are rarely consciously aware of until He shows us. With new awareness, I stepped aside and started giving God strength in my life by believing He would and could work in me in all areas. That journey set me on the path to freedom and continues today.

I still have to remind myself when things come up to leave the work to Him. And today I write to remind myself to let go. He works in me. It is His job. Mine is to trust in His work, rest in His promises, follow Him His lead, surrender to His timing and be still and know He is MY God.

God loves us more than we can comprehend. He doesn’t want us trapped in afflictions and states of mind that bind us. Afflictions are to motivate us to search for Him and His ways that are perfect in love and truth and set us free. He wants us to be free, healthy and thriving. But He is the one to take us there. He is the only one who can. I have pushed, tried and work long and hard enough to know my efforts are fruitless and in vain.

Author: Rachel

My passion is cultivating a deep relationship with God and helping others to do the same. I LOVE sharing with others insights that God has taught me and hearing what God has taught them... thus my blog, Stirring the Deep. My focus is on a relationship, not a religion. Life is in the relationship. I believe in a balance and unity of body, mind and spirit. I feel it's important to nurture all three for they all affect each other. I try to live in the present, where the Holy Spirit is. And I try to do all with the motive of love. I've come to believe life is a journey and not a destination. It isn't about perfection, is it about growth.

9 thoughts on “God’s Workmanship, Not Ours

  1. Rachel, you are so right on. I believe the reason most Christians are growing weary is that we are trying to work it all out ourselves. It won’t work because our power is no match for the things that come against us.
    I saw myself in all that you wrote about. I pray that I too can turn it over to God and trust that he has a perfect plan for my life and I sometimes just need to be still and wait on him.

    God bless!

    http://www.mlordi.wordpress.com

  2. Marianne,

    I agree . . . the weariness comes from working when we should be resting. I will be praying for you as I pray for myself in this area.

    Rachel

  3. Rachel,

    Thank you, I appreciate your prayers. Your gift of touching others is from God. You just need to let him do the work through you. It is comforting to know that he does the work and that we just need to be willing vessels.

    I really appreciate your messages!

  4. Blessings Rachel…I’ve read this quite a few times since yesterday and you have such wonderful insights in simply TRUSTING God.

    I don’t think I’m a perfectionist, but I, too had problems letting go of control. Thinking that I needed to fix many areas in my life…I was very self critical…I’m so thankful that I can rest because with all that is happening in the world, praying as often as I can, I have such a sense of weariness and heaviness…so I guess I kept rereading to see the key you applied to surrendering & trusting. This is such a good reminder to leave God’s work to Him. I don’t have the power that He has so, why not? Maybe I felt I could achieve more & still believe I can in His power, not mine. It’s amazing to see Him work through us and often in spite of us! May God continue to work in us…as we surrender our control…trust Him…and allow Him to work!

  5. Hi My Sistah!!
    Wow we both seem to have similar stories. I think we both finally got it huh *smile*.. Whatever it took to get where I am today, believe it or not I would not change a thing, I can really say it and mean it. Just don’t know why it took this long to get the aha moment but like my mom used to say..only God knows .

    Hugz Lorie

  6. Peggy,

    Thanks so much for your comment . . . it is amazing to see what God can do through us inspite of us when we stop getting in the way and trust His work .

    Lorie,

    So good to hear from you . . . as always . . . and yes, I am very thankful God has pulled back the blinders. But I agree we wouldn’t understand all that He does if we hadn’t been down the paths we travelled. They were hard . . . but it lead us closer to Him and for that I am very thankful for each one.

    Rachel

  7. Thanks Rachel for shring your truth for it is the truth for so many including me, it took a long time fo rme to realize I can’t change a thing about myself-which is why I was staying the same. But learning God is at work in me and it is Him who does the changing has brought transformation, though I have a great long way to go I give thanks Gos is molding me to His good great purpose. Be blessed-as always I am blessed in this place.

  8. Willnette,

    Thanks for sharing . . . it is encouraging to know others have journeyed a similar path – and it is glorifying to God when we have found Him to be the one and only true answer.

    Rachel

  9. Great website, very readable clean content. You may want to try adding more pictures, but either way nice site.

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