This morning I was trying to sleep in, hard to do with furry babies telling you of their deep desire for breakfast, and my mind wandered to something ugly. Something old, very, very old and painful. Something I don't think about often because with it brings guilt and shame. Sometimes things happen to you and satan loves to use them to bring you shame and guilt. What happened doesn't matter, but I realized as I lay there and thought of it I never gave it up to God.
We all have painful memories, some are of things we did or said, and some are of things that were done to us or said to us. My memory was a mix of both. I lay there this morning and realized I never wanted satan to use that against me again. So I began to simply ask God to take it away. I didn't use any special words, I didn't even pray aloud. I just simply asked Him to take it away.
As I prayed the words, I literally saw the thing slipping away from me, over the side, and gone. The pain, shame, and guilt of just moments ago were gone. God took it and replaced it with peace and joy!
I know that sometimes I pray for God to take things put I pick them back up or I later realize it was lip service, just doing the "right thing". I didn't REALLY want to let it go at all. Whether it is a sin in my life or a pain, sometimes they bring some distorted sense of comfort to just keep holding on to them.
But the peace and joy I felt in that moment of really letting go was different than any of those so-called "gave it to God" times. My heart really wanted it gone!
Our walk with God is a process. We all have sins, hurts, and deep down, gut wrenching pains that we want gone, but God, in His love and mercy, doesn't deal with them all at the same time. If He did, I think we would surely die! We couldn't handle the pain of it. God knows that and that is why He does everything, EVERYTHING, in His perfect time.
We can stand back and see the sin or the pain in others lives and think, "why don't they just ask God to forgive them, ask Him to heal them, ask Him to help them?" Sometimes I wonder if that's what the whole speck in your neighbor's eye, but beam in your own verse is really about. (Matthew 7:3) It's not about judging the other person as much as it's about judging the timing of God. He will deal with that speck in their eye when they are ready. He will take it from them, once He has brought them to a place where they can flush that speck out, they can let it go to Him.
And He will deal with your beam, once you have gone through the process to give it up. He takes us through the process. He knows exactly what we need along the way. He knows who to put in our paths. He knows what challenges and joys need to be apart of the road to bring us to the point.
Have I wanted those memories gone? Has it been a long time? Yes and yes, but He knew the exact moment when I would be ready to just give it up to Him and accept the peace of letting it go.