Posted by: glorifyhim1 | September 19, 2011

The End of Me

  

Have you ever noticed how emotional highs are often followed by extreme lows? We eagerly anticipate and plan for vacations or fun excursions, special dinners and celebrations, only to see our emotions hit rock bottom once the occasion is over. Like a roller coaster on its downward plunge, our emotions can fall at breakneck speed. Such was the case with me this morning. Having experienced a whirlwind weekend with all the kids at home, a family reunion with my husband’s family, and a special dinner with mine, I awoke to Monday morning and a very quiet house. In spite of all the blessings over the weekend, I felt tired and pretty much an emotional wreck – I was essentially at the end of me!

 

The end of me! Have you ever been there? I seem to go there on a pretty regular basis because as long as I can work out problems, struggle to keep on top of things, and do whatever is in my power to do, I tend to rely on my own abilities to take care of whatever I may be facing. Yet what I learn over and over again, true strength does not come from what I can do. My strength is found in Christ. And when I am at the end of me – when I stop trying to work things out and do things my way and look to Him instead – that is when I find true strength, direction, and peace. As the Psalmist declared in Psalm 61:2-4: “From the end of the earth I will cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter for me, a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings.”

 

Emotional highs and lows can easily overwhelm us because most often they concern the deepest matters of the heart. In my situation this weekend, I realized that this would be the last family reunion that my son and daughter-in-law would be attending for quite some time since they are leaving in October to live and work on the mission field in Chile. Throughout the weekend, conversation invariably gravitated to their soon departure and I found myself both rejoicing with them and feeling overwhelmed by what the separation could mean to our family. While we have been blessed to share much time together as a family, I knew that as the children have gotten older, times together have required more and more of a juggling act with times and schedules. Times together now would certainly be few and far between. And there was nothing I could do to change it. I was at the end of me. Thus began my emotional roller coaster ride, until I took it to the “rock that is higher than I.”

 

It has been said that the end of me is the beginning of God. The apostle Paul discovered that truth as he struggled with a physical malady. He told the Corinthians that he pleaded with the Lord to remove it, but that the Lord said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (see 2 Corinthians 12:7-9). Paul declared: “Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10).

 

Paul was at the end of me. There was nothing he could do to change his situation. All of us face situations every day that take us to the end of ourselves. Some face serious illnesses and debilitating diseases. Others may lose everything they own through a natural disaster. Some may be attacked or persecuted wrongfully. There are many who are hungry, homeless, and hurting. Some are lonely or distressed. But just like Paul, whatever our need, if we will only take it to Christ in our weakness, He will meet us with His power and strength. When we surrender our all to Him (however weak or pitiful we may be), He will make us strong.

 

I don’t know how it works, but it does. There is something about surrendering all that we are that releases God to be God in the middle of our situations. He changes hearts, minds, and gives direction. This morning He reminded me of the joys of my family. No separation, however small or great, changes what we’ve shared together and what we mean to one another. Instead of diminishing our relationships, each new step and adventure has served to enrich those relationships and help us grow individually as well. Will we miss being together regularly as a family? Most certainly! Will I cry when it comes time to say good-bye? In all probability! Will I face the future with confidence? Absolutely – because Christ has promised: “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, as I surrender my pitiful, weak self to Him, I know that I can discover His strength. For the end of me is the beginning of God!  

 

 

 

 

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