Wednesday, May 7, 2014
"On Fire": Make Sure You Know the Difference Between a BLESSING, LESSON and MISTAKE
"But understand this, that in the last days will come (set in) perilous times of great stress and trouble [hard to deal with and hard to bear]. For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane. [They will be] without natural [human] affection (callous and inhuman), relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); [they will be] slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good. [They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God. For [although] they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it [their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession]. Avoid [all] such people [turn away from them].
For among them are those who worm their way into homes and captivate silly and weak-natured and spiritually dwarfed women, loaded down with [the burden of their] sins [and easily] swayed and led away by various evil desires and seductive impulses. [These weak women will listen to anybody who will teach them]; they are forever inquiring and getting information, but are never able to arrive at a recognition and knowledge of the Truth."---2 Timothy 3:1-7(AMP)
I was watching something that made me think about the difference between blessings, lessons and mistakes. Especially when it comes to relationships. More specifically, relationships between men and women.
Most of us are familiar with the verse in Scripture that tells us "As a dog returns to his own vomit, so a fool repeats his folly" (Proverbs 26:11-NKJV) and yet, I'm not sure how many of us *actually think about* that when it comes to the patterns that we have in our relationships. In other words, although the Word tells us that it's with *humility* and *fear of the Lord* that we are able to get access to riches, honor and life (Proverbs 22:4), it seems that every time we go into a relationship too quickly (or is it desperately?) or we remain in one without obeying *all* biblical boundaries or we keep going back to something that clearly is not God's best for us, we chalk it up to being a "lesson" when really...it may be more like a "silly woman mistake":
Lesson: a useful piece of practical wisdom acquired by experience or study
Mistake: (n) an error in action, calculation, opinion, or judgment caused by poor reasoning, carelessness, insufficient knowledge, etc.; (v) to understand, interpret, or evaluate wrongly; misunderstand; misinterpret
One thing that I really like and respect about the Amplified Version of 2 Timothy 3:1-7 is the fact that it speaks to silly women who allow men into their lives who ultimately mean them no good. It also explains how these women come to be in those situations. It says that these kinds of women are silly (childish-I Corinthians 13:11) and weak-natured (God gave us power and a sound mind-2 Timothy 1:7) and spiritually-dwarfed (this means they are spiritually stagnant-Hebrews 5:12-14). These are the kinds of women who will listen to just about anybody and because of it, they end up being taken advantage of. Always getting information but never coming to the Truth. The truth that will set them free (John 8:31-32) from their own foolish habits.
But when these women do find themselves in this kind of space, if they continue to remain involved in these types of scenarios, I'm not so sure those are called "lessons". Honestly, when you keep making an error in your actions, when your judgment is rooted (or is it rotted?-LOL) in poor reasoning and carelessness, when you get into relationships with people with a lack of sufficient knowledge about them (and only time and true spiritual seeking can help you to get what you need to know), when you continue to interpret and evaluate wrongly, when you're always in relationships that are more like misunderstandings...*where is the wisdom in that?*
A lesson is what makes you wiser.
A mistake is when you don't apply wisdom in the first place.
Looking back over my relationships, I realize that a lot of past men weren't even worthy enough to be a "lesson". There was no wisdom going out because there honestly was no wisdom applied going in. I was just telling a married couple last night that I can tell when someone is happily married, even without their spouse being around. It's all over their face; their energy radiates contentment and satisfaction.
And honestly, I am learning to apply the same discernment to singles and their journey. When you are getting better, especially spiritually, even if the relationship turns out to be platonic rather than your future husband, it's not for naught. *That man was still a lesson and should be honored as time well spent*. I say that because some practical wisdom came that you can apply to your life. Oh, but when I see someone going back to their old patterns or they are slipping spiritually, that is not a *lesson*. That is called a *mistake*.
Remember, wisdom is defined as being "the quality or state of being wise; knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight". If someone is in your life to be a lesson for you, you will walk away with more sagacity, discernment and insight than before and it will resonate in the choices that you make moving forward. On the other hand, if someone is a mistake, it will be due to all kinds of errors that you made in your actions, opinions and judgments from the very beginning---ones that could have probably been avoided if you had asked the Father for wisdom (James 1:5) to guard your heart (Proverbs 4:23) and to keep you from "following your heart" (Jeremiah 17:9) over *following him* (Proverbs 3:4-6) in the first place.
So, at some point today, take out a moment and think about your past and present dating life.
Who were the lessons?
Who were the mistakes?
Figure out what can be applied in preparation for your future husband when it comes to the lessons.
Figure out the self-work that needs to be done to avoid making the same mistakes.
And finally, pray for your future husband. That you will use divine wisdom to know/recognize/discern who is truly *your* "favor or gift bestowed by God, thereby bringing happiness". OK, did you peep that? A true blessing comes from God (James 1:17) and it (or in this case, he) will bring you happiness: "good fortune; pleasure; contentment; joy".
A husband, *your husband*, is to bring you:
Mistakes don't do that.
Lessons prepare you for that.
In what you decide to do in your relationships moving forward...
Purpose in your mind to not be a silly woman.
Purpose in your spirit to use wisdom.
Only a wise woman is going to recognize a blessing when it arrives anyway.
The silly women will still be chasing their mistakes.