At the height of my hurt & anger this is all God had to say to me, ‘sin is lurking (remain hidden waiting in ambush) at your door, beware & master it’. “What God? Don’t you see how much am hurting? Don’t you even care? Where’s my comfort?” Then I pictured throwing my punches while tears flowed like crazy. ‘If there’s a moment I don’t love you Lord it’s now, it’s this very moment’…Not even God was spared from the intensity of my emotions – I couldn’t help it, & that’s why he’s fighting it off of me. Ruthlessly.
I have prayed the bit of God search my heart and thoughts and if you find anything unworthy lead me back to the way everlasting. Then he found something & stripped me – stark naked. In my hurt I still found the will to do devotion and that’s when he let me know how much I had in common with Cain who killed his brother Abel. If you think God isn’t nice wait until he disciplines you. I get why David cried out for Mercy.
My best friend in high school thought I was slightly better than Cruela – a mean character in a certain soap opera. I was utterly mean and delighted in winning cold wars. I figured I wasn’t meant for the literal battle field so I mastered the art of inflicting emotional pain; I was pretty good. I pushed a classmate to a mild anxiety attack – don’t even ask me how, & I watched Evelyn turn pink from crying her heart out a couple of times. There are a few who flopped their exams, I couldn’t let them study. I brought out their insecurities, often ridiculing them in public trampling on their self-esteem. I was barely affected & when I was, I had to master my feelings because I had to win; they had to beg for mercy, not once, not twice but until my anger was quenched – & I had plenty.
Fast forward to years when am chasing after God and I think nothing unworthy is lodged within me. After all I have him search my heart every day. I pretty much get convictions from the Holy Spirit, like when I cross the road at a non-designated area when the foot bridge is a stone’s throw away, when I lie or a negative thought crosses my mind. He’s like ‘Caroline, that’s still wrong’. Sometimes I sigh as I drag myself to climb the extra stairs & go round a building to get to a place I could otherwise hop & be there in a minute. He makes it worthwhile as he reminds me that there’s no easy way of doing the right thing & on the other hand when there’s no police in casual cloths waiting to pounce on me from the other end, he’s still watching. Occasionally I meet a needy person and I share lunch with him/her or I meet a friend I hadn’t seen for a while. It pushes me to do one more thing right – oh these awful gold star rewards of mine!
6 am. Swollen throat from a tearful night, am looking for comfort from the God I felt I hated. I was unconsciously hurting people I love over consequences from past choices I made – those he forgave & delivered me from. In all honesty I don’t want to be an angry person carrying every little hurt at heart. Am glad he didn’t strike me down from all the unworthy thoughts I redirected towards him. So he is God and he is supposed to fix everything even when am doing the exact opposite of what he commands. Because my emotions are bursting out of control, he is supposed to come to my level and assure me that he knows my heart & how I desire to do right. That when everyone else doesn’t get me, he does, so I shouldn’t take things too hard. If only he did so!
‘Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door, it desires to have you, but you must master it.” Gen 4:6-7.
Wait. Me & Cain? If I do what is right? Have I been doing wrong – in all my pursuit of righteousness? This isn’t the comfort I was looking for. So I started off at Gen 4 to get where Cain went wrong, & learned a few things.
He was the first born – Normally first borns have some sought of honor, remember Esau & Jacob on the birthright story? They are considered the strength of their fathers. Without forgetting, he is the first miracle of birth, yes, pregnancy & birth are miracles.
He was the first to offer offering – “In the course of time, Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord…” Am convinced he had good intentions otherwise he didn’t have to bother with the offering in the first place.
He did not receive favor from the Lord – This is the bit am still digesting – my wounds are kind of still raw. So Cain brought what he had & offered to God. He had expectations and wanted to receive approval from God but he was rejected. It had to be with his heart because what came out first was anger then jealousy. “So Cain was very angry and his face downcast” verse 5. I also see lack of humility.
If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? – And right has never been relative like this before. I realized I can wear myself out trying to be right when am chasing the wind.
Sin is crouching at your door – another version says sin is waiting to attack you like a lion. I have seen lions hunt & they waste no time to pounce on a prey they pursue. In my case I just have to open my lips & give in to my emotions, saying things I don’t understand/mean and labelling God on how unloving and unfaithful he is.
It desires to have you but you must master it – It doesn’t say should, rather it’s a command; you must master it. God clearly told me that this situation desires to destroy me but I must not give in to it. That required me to be humble, apologise for things I did not understand and refuse to give in to my emotions that dragged along unnecessary words. It’s the hardest thing I had to do.
The greatest lesson I learned is responding to my emotions with the true & absolute word of God. So help me God.
Earlier this week, God made it so clear that he hasn’t called me to impress people – by my stories and many words, but rather go forth in obedience doing the work he has called me to & do it ‘right’; that didn’t come out so nice. I won’t even say that was mean, it’s simply God’s tough love.