This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves
to be my disciples. John 15:8

My Unreasonable Month

>> Saturday, January 31, 2009

I've never looked forward to turning a calendar page more than I am now. I'm more than happy to say good-bye to January and hello to February. Of course I will not officially do that until tomorrow because my Grandma instilled in me that it is bad luck to turn the calendar early. I don't believe in bad luck, but I believe in Grandma and honoring her by following her silly Irish superstitions.

So my calendar will remain firmly planted on January for another 7 hours.

At my Thursday morning Women's study we are doing yet another Beth Moore study. This time we are having our minds blown by an in depth study of the book of Esther, Beth's most recent undertaking. This week as we watched the video, my Grandma was leaving earth to meet her Savior. I didn't know that was when it was happening, but it was. Beth was taking us through an in depth study of what it means to have a God-given destiny. One of the "bullet points" was that when God has something in mind for us, we can bet it will be beyond what we are capable of. Her terminology was the "unreasonable expectation". Esther faced an unrealistic expectation when she was urged to approach the King (her husband....go figure) regarding the decree he had just been "tricked" into signing. The one that would annihilate all of the Jews, including her. To enter the King's presence without an invitation was death. Even for his own wife. It was unreasonable to expect this of her. And yet He was expecting it.

While I have not been required to brave certain death in order to prevent a genocide, I have certainly had a month that has been beyond what I would consider reasonable. Mark has been putting in ridiculous hours at work. His dad has been in the hospital with pneumonia. My kids have been sick. My Grandma passed away. I am in the midst of planning another big event with my ladies at church. I had to see the doctor and have a zillion tests done for some issues I've been having. Plus the laundry keeps piling up. And my family keeps getting hungry and they expect me to feed them. Every day I wake up and the beds need to be made all over again, and at least occasionally the bathrooms have needed some attention (although it's been very little attention, truth be told).

God's expectations for me this month have been unreasonable. Plain and simple. It's been too much. Just like it was too much to expect of Esther.

As Beth wrapped up our study on Thursday, she paused on Mordecai's words to Esther as he was urging her to act on behalf of her people. His words are the most famous in the book of Esther:

Esther 4:14b And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?

Beth drew our attention to the words "who knows". With the terrifying situation Esther was facing, we can probably assume that she wanted something more concrete than "Who Knows?" She probably wanted to be assured that someone knew. She probably wanted to be certain that God knew. That God had placed her in royal position for such a time as this. That if she was obedient to Mordecai, God would honor that and protect her. She probably wanted that. I know I would have. I know that I still do.

What Beth said next was huge. When we face an unreasonable expectation, we can assume that God knows. What He really wants is for US to know. He wants us to face a situation so overwhelming to our human-ness that when we make it through it, the only choice we have is to fall on our faces and say "I Know that You are Lord." As I wrap up the month of January, I can honestly say that I KNOW that He is Lord. I KNOW that He is God. This month was simply too much to handle had I been doing it alone. The fact that I am still standing, still healthy, still breathing and still smiling (most of the time) is a testament to HIM. Not to me. Had I been facing this month alone, I would have been curled up in a corner a long time ago. The unreasonable expectation He placed in front of me this month reminded me that He Is God.

Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Psalm 100:3 (ESV)


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