Painfully Coming to Myself

I believe this was the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere...possibly a zoo in Florida, however. 

I’m still waiting for the day I come to myself.

Luke 15:17 tells us about the prodigal son coming to himself…some versions say “when he finally came to His senses…”   (If you don’t know the Biblical account of the prodigal son click the link and read it.  It’s a very an interesting story). 

I started to say “While I am not prodigal…” but then I looked up the word “prodigal” for the first time in my life.  I always assumed it referred to his running away, but it actually means “wasteful, reckless, uncontrolled.”   So, not only am I prodigal with myself, my time, my health, and my thoughts, I desperately need to come to myself in the sense of being a child of God; I need to act like that’s who I am….not because of who I am, but because of who HE is.  Be righteous because He is righteous.  (1 John 3:6-8)  

I also looked up what it means to be righteous, which is one of the dominant attributes of God.  It means having character, being decent, honest, moral; having integrity, living honorably, without reproach, with rectitude, uprightness of mind, heart, and soul, having virtuousness…I’ll stop right there.  Being righteous (Christ-like) is way more than I can attain, on my own that is.  

Bear with me…I do have a point as I dart here and there with my musings.

While earnestly praying for a sick family member (my seven-year-old cousin recently diagnosed with B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia), seeking a miraculous healing for her, I began to realize that I not only wanted that miracle for her, but for myself.  Unashamedly, I want to see God’s hand in a huge and unquestionably miraculous way (not forgetting that He moves in the miraculous every day, things that I take for granted). 

But for a moment, I wanted God to know that a miracle would speak volumes to unbelievers as to Who He is; and to believers, it would be a solid faith-builder.  It takes foolish audacity to tell God what He should do to get the results we think we’ll see.

And then it hit me…or rather, He showed me:
I wanted the miracle more than the Miracle Maker.

And perhaps all these years, I have wanted freedom more than the Freedom Giver, the solution to my problem more than the Problem Solver; a way out more than the Way Maker.   Am I simply having regret and desiring relief without repentance? 

Gluttony is the only sin where I beg for help but add a stipulation:  “But, God, I don’t mean right now!   Right now, I want this cheeseburger, fries, and strawberry milkshake.  And oh, these chocolate chip cookies.  But Monday, Lord!  Help me on Monday to get this voracious appetite under control.   I’ll eat my way the through the weekend, but Monday, Lord…Monday!”   No, I never said that in words to God, but I did say it in my actions.  Loudly and repeatedly.  I really don’t want Him to be Lord of my plate and silverware.   I want to be in control of that!

Dying to self, crucifying our fleshly desires…what a terribly painful thing!  Being righteous?  It means to do what the word of God says no matter how you feel…or how badly I want to keep eating when I’m full.

Sugar makes my appetite insatiable.   That’s a proven fact.  But I invariably eat it again no matter who long I’ve been “clean.”  God may never deliver me from that affliction for reasons known only to Him.  (Or maybe He is teaching me to discipline my self-nature, bring it under subjection, because for most of my life, flesh has ruled me.)

Ouch!  It’s painful being pruning by God’s own hands.  Very painful, indeed!  Even knowing the rewards are far sweeter than any morsel of the sweetest sugar could ever is not easy.

His rewards are far sweeter than anything that 
may be keeping YOU in chains right now, too.

Maybe I am waking up and coming to myself…finally coming to my senses.   But I like the path of least resistance, so I am not promising to crucify my “self” before Monday. 

Lord Jesus, help me.
I desperately need You, Lord.



  1. I'm praying for your cousin. I have no other wise words this morning. I can relate to so much that you are saying. We are a work in progress and we are being pruned by the Best of the Best. We just have to keep trusting in Him and keep seeking Him and turning ourselves over to Him, even if we take ourselves back day after day. One day we'll actually maybe allow him to work in all aspects of our lives, just not the ones that are "easy" to surrender.


    1. Thank you so much for praying for Ellen.

      Surrender is what He wants, I know, and it's what I hold on to with all my puny might! My might is puny, but my free will likes to rule the roost.


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