“For this is contained in Scripture: “BEHOLD, I LAY IN ZION A CHOICE STONE, A PRECIOUS CORNER stone, AND HE WHO BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.” (1Pet 2:6 NASB)
I lived most of my life avoiding the possibility of being disappointed. In human relationships, I seemed to anticipate disappointment around every corner. My life was centered on the avoidance of crushing disappointment and the humiliating shame that came from letting myself be disappointed. If I didn’t let myself be aware of my needs and wants, but instead focused on everyone else’s needs and wants, then I would not be disappointed. I could give to others without being hurt by their failures to satisfy my needs, because I believed that I had no needs. (This is one way to describe codependency. (I strived to live a needless and wantless life where the only disappointment was my failure to be needless and wantless.
Clearly there was a serious obstacle here. How could I ever hope to have a wholesome and nourishing relationship with God when there was no trust? At that time I kept God at a distance so that I didn’t have to depend on Him. What an awful, lonely, and isolated existence I had for most of my life. Me and myself and I – Oh what an incredible barren team. I did not live in a cave, but I effectively walled out most people, and may as well have lived in a hole in the ground.
The biggest lie I believed was, “I don’t matter.” This simple phrase was the center point of my thinking. It was the guardian of my wounded heart. I turned to it whenever disappointment threatened to appear.
Now, I could have read 1Peter 2:6 ten-years ago and have agreed with the verse. I would have thought, “Of course God has not disappointed me.” There was only one problem, and it was a big one; I didn’t ask God for anything that I could not reasonably anticipate achieving through my own efforts. I asked God for nothing, and He patiently waited and watched over me. I never asked Him to be the rock upon which I would rest my life. God wanted to have a relationship with me, but I, as a codependent person, was incapable of true intimacy with God or any person.
Question: what changed my thinking and my life? Answer: the Holy Spirit.
During times of prayer I began to ask God whether certain things I believed were true. God was gently suggesting that I ask, and I obeyed in a very small way. You see, in my mind, I wasn’t really asking God to do anything for me, because I could probably have figured out what was true on my own. I was just double checking. To my surprise, God didn’t always agree with my conclusions and perceptions of reality. Actually He rarely agreed with me. He wasn’t condemning or harsh. He just stated the truth and corrected my thinking. What was interesting about this was that whenever God revealed truth to me about my false thinking, I felt better. My old anger, old hurt, and old disappointments began to slowly melt away. Eventually He revealed the truth that is expressed in 1Peter 2:5
“you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”
God was slowly turning my life in-side-out, and when I began to contemplate scriptures such as this, my internal house of cards began to flutter down to the ground. My personal truth, “I don’t matter” was being replaced by God’s truth, which is “Everything about me matters to God and His plans for building me up for His purposes.” I truly began to believe that I must, in all things, be dependent upon God.
I now understand that I can’t with hold small corners of my life here and there where I continue to be in charge. God really wants my whole life and expects complete dependency.
Of course, I still struggle with depending upon the trinity of God, submitting, and obeying. I continue to work myself into corners of my own making, where the only way out is through the cross of Jesus. That wonderful cross that teaches me to die to self and to be resurrected through the power of God. That wonderful Rock, which never disappoints!
Lord Jesus, I am far from perfect. The places in my life where I am whole and complete are the direct consequence of your holy touch of truth. I pray that I will some day soon have the courage to let the entire weight of my life rest upon you. Lord Jesus, show me the next area of my life that I need to turn over to you. For your yoke is easy and your burden is light. Amen.