Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Sunrise Insights on Making Excuses

I heard the slow start of the rain break the silence of pre-dawn. The rhythm of a steadier rain grew until I relaxed back into my pillow.

Oh good, I won't have to get up early this morning for my walk.

The next time I woke up, at 5:30, I didn't hear rain. 

Well, whatdya know? It stopped. I guess I'll get up and go.

I was in a bit of a sour mood.
I didn't wanna go.
I wanted to hit the "snooze."
My knees hurt.
It was chilly.
And misting.


Excuses.

I went anyway.

As I walked, negative thoughts invaded my mind, trying desperately to fuel that sourness and steal the peace and joy that I knew would come if I kept going.

I continued to move, and the stiffness in my knees loosened, my body temperature rose and I tuned in to the sound of water droplets bouncing among the leaves of the tall trees around me. God's beauty abounds both in the warm sunrise and in the chilly mist. 

This was my "Sonrise Insight" this morning:

Our flesh will always cry out to be fed. 

Unless we silence it.

It will always fight for its own pleasure.

Unless we deny it. 

It will always seek to make excuses. 

Unless we take responsibility for our actions---or inactions.

I thought about the struggle I have with food, specifically sugar.

There are times when I can look beyond the immediate desire and remember how I felt after the last time I gave in to my flesh. When that glimmer of revelation comes, I find it easier to deny the flesh, because I know that the pleasure will be fleeting, and inevitably, guilt and remorse will follow. 

Looking back helps me look beyond.

I can get through this stronghold that sugar has on me, because I got through giving up a lot of other things that weren't good for me:

Caffeine, diet soda, cigarettes, ice cream, and Oreos to name just a few. And that was without the help of God!

Going through something doesn't so much make us stronger, as it makes us recognize our weakness. When we recognize our weakness, we realize the need for Someone far greater to come to our aid. 

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."

Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.

For when I am weak, then I am strong.
(1 Corinthians 12:9-10)


When I am weak, then I am strong.

When I don't want to when I should, do want to when I shouldn't, and feel entitled when I'm not...that's when I am at my weakest.


And that is when I must admit my weakness, take responsibility, and call on my God to come to my rescue. And He does.

EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

But I must deny the flesh, or His reason for being there is pointless.

If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up his cross and follow me. (Matthew 16:24)

Whatever it is that you're struggling with today, I want to challenge you:

Stop making excuses. 

Stop hitting the snooze alarm and feeding the flesh, because the more you hit that snooze, well...the more you'll snooze. And eventually the alarm will startle you out of your slumber. You WILL have to silence the flesh sooner or later.


Blessings Along the Path,
Mare


sharing this post with Holly at Testimony Tuesday, Kelly at #RaRa LinkupHolley at Coffee For Your Heart, Beth at Wedded WednesdayDeb at Blessing Counters, Arabah Joy at Grace & TruthBarbie at The Weekend Brew, Janis at Sunday Stillness, Crystal at Thriving Thursdays   

14 comments:

  1. Thanks for the encouragement! I need to run today and I was searching for a good excuse not to!

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    1. haha! That's so funny Helene. I'm glad I could help you not to find another excuse!

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  2. I have just started a walking/running schedule in hopes to do a 5K in October. Each morning just getting out of bed and going is the HARDEST part but once I get going I love it. Thank you for using that to point me to how my walk with Christ is the same way.

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    1. Wow, Amy, that's quite a (pardon the pun) feat! I'm always so impressed by people like you. I hate to run, and I don't do it well, so I just walk. You're so right tho...once you get out and the endorphins kick in, it's great. I think overcoming temptation is a lot like that, don't you think?

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  3. Yes, it's so hard to push past our tiredness or natural inclinations to do what is right in the moment. But like you've said, Mary, the more we do it, the more it becomes our default pattern. I LOVE having my quiet time and I believe that it wasn't such a passion until it became the rhythm of my morning. Love your topic, my friend! And thanks for cheerleading all of us on to greater discipline and strength through our yielding to the Lord. :)

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    1. Well, Beth, being a recovering perfectionist, I couldn't just do one thing at 5:30...exercise, write or quiet time...I had to find a way to do all three! It's not working out so well now, and because I did say RECOVERING...I'm okay with two out of three...I meet with God during my walk and hey, if I have time later, I write. But I did notice that the more time that goes by, the less I remember about my sweet time...that's why journaling is good...but alas, my job awaits and I can only do so much. Thanks for your kind words. You always have something encouraging to say!

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  4. I'm right after you on Testimony Tuesday and grateful to have a chance to read your honest blog! I love how by returning to scripture you're strengthened in you weaknesses, enlightened by truth! I trust God will keep guiding you to giving up sugar..I'm a health food nut, so I'm here if you ever need ideas for a healthier diet. Knowing sugar is like the devil keeps me away from it! My husband is very effected by sugar -- almost ruined his health, so we have to stay away from it.When I bake (for a treat once in a while) I use agave..I just made him a chocolate pudding pie with agave and it was delicious! I'm very touched by your honesty and effort in the blog to trust in God's word to strengthen you..and knowing our weakness can become your greatest strengths When we're weak we're strong because we can rely on God to heal us and make us more whole.

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  5. Thanks, Kathy. That chocolate pudding sounds delicious! I'd love the recipe. I'll hop on over to your blog to contact you.

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  6. Hi Mary! Oh man, I know what you mean about sugar addictions. Yikes! I never met a sugary snack I didn't like. but with my God, I know I can overcome. I'm reading a book about making choices, and the author says, it's always my choice to make. Well, I guess it's up to me and grace then!
    Good for you for getting out there and exercising, even though the mist was there!
    From Blessing Counters,
    Ceil

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    1. I agree, Ceil! We always have a choice. And I've heard that it takes 21 days to make a change...that's 3 weeks. I'm going in to my 3rd week of getting up early and walking, and you know, I have created a new habit...I kind of like it...now, if I could just kick the sugar habit...I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!

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  7. Woo Hoo! Good for you for pushing forward and inspiring us along the way! Thank you!!

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    1. Thanks, Deb! I don't always succeed, but I do my best. And I'm learning that when I "mess up" it's still ok. I don't have to write the whole day off. I get to just start over.

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  8. Oops! I think you're talking to me, queen of procrastination. Get and and keep moving. That's a good mantra. Thank you!

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  9. Lux, we all have a little of that procrastination in us. Some more than others...but it's not always a bad thing. My husband, who is the King of Procrastination saved us from making a very bad move several years ago by not acting quickly on a job offer. Turned out every single person in the company who had moved to this other part of the country was laid off. He still has the same job. So, sometimes it's good! I suppose it's in the discernment that is key.

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