04 Apr “I Can’t Do This!”
“I Can’t Do This!”
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”
Galatians 5:22-23 NASB
That was my thought as I tried to guide my daughter through her math studies earlier this year. It’s not that I couldn’t add or subtract, it’s that my impatience was taking control over me. I have a lot of respect for dedicated teachers. It’s not easy to be a parent, let alone a parent who is also homeschooling. This is one life lesson I continue to take: Patience. I have not passed this lesson. In fact, let me be metaphorical and say that I’ve flunked out and am on the 20th+ year of this same exact lesson. It’s as if I will never graduate this level.
When King Saul became impatient and couldn’t wait for the prophet Samuel (I Samuel 13:8-14), he lost his kingdom and God replaced him with King David. I don’t want to be like King Saul. I don’t want to go through this same route over and over again. I don’t want to lose out because I continue to lose my patience. And yet, I still do it. I continue to take this same lesson and it seems like I don’t learn. Sometimes, I want to tell myself, “Amy, you suck.”
Maybe…maybe I’m looking at all of this wrong. Maybe I need to take a step back and stop looking at this as if it is a graded school exam that I need to pass in order to go to the next level. Maybe I need to admit that I am not perfect and those moments of impatience serve to show me that I will always continue to be in need of a Savior and Guide. Maybe all those “failed lessons” were supposed to point upward and I’ve been looking inward. Wow. I guess I’m pretty selfish. But, I’m getting it. I am human. I am not perfect. I need Jesus. Oh! How I need Jesus!
Having been so focused on trying to get it right, I’ve lost the mark. I’m starting to understand that impatience has more to do with my own agenda, rather than what is the best course for all. Isn’t love patient? Of course it is. When I operate in love, especially His, I’m pretty sure it will be just a bit easier to have patience. I guess I’ve been operating with the wrong internal software. It’s time to replace it.
It is only by His strength that I can do this. It is only when I continue to die to my selfish nature that I can allow Him to move in me. I have to move to the side. I cannot take center stage in these areas of my life. If I do, the damage I will cause to those near me will be worse than anything I can do to myself. I have to change some things. I have to let go. “I can’t do this!” needs to apply to the fact that I’m in need of Jesus. I can’t do it alone. I can’t be that lone ranger. I can’t do life with my own blueprints. But…I can say “Yes” to Him. I can allow Him in like never before. I can put Him in the lead. And I CAN follow.