Aug 31, 2019

Only Jesus

The past few weeks have been busy and challenging, both at work and at home. I've been battling self-pity, pride, hurt, anger, resentment. Losing at times, barely getting by at others.

Yesterday on the way to work I had a meltdown, releasing all the emotions I thought I dealt with earlier in the week. I realized I hadn't processed some hurt and anger as the events happened. I did my usual "It will be OK, I was wrong, I'll just move on" routine.

After the meltdown I still felt the same heaviness in my soul. Then I slid into striving mode without blinking an eye. I can do this, I can overcome, I can rise above my circumstances. Yes, this area is going well. Oops, messed up here. Oh wait, doing a great job here. I continued to pray but experienced no peace or joy. 

Until last night.

Don and I went to see Casting Crowns at the Shenandoah County Fair. They opened with Only Jesus. 

Yes, only Jesus! I sang the words of the song, crying tears of joy and sweet release. From the chorus:

And I, I don't want to leave a legacy
I don't care if they remember me
Only Jesus
And I, I've only got one life to live
I'll let every second point to Him
Only Jesus

For the next hour and a half, we worshiped our Creator and Father God, re-focusing on Him. We sang, we basked in His presence, we rejoiced. Everything else grew distant and fell back into the correct priority. Perspective renewed, peace and joy restored. 

Only Jesus.

As I pondered how I lost my peace and joy, I realized two things. 

1. I didn't keep current with releasing my emotions. I tried to manage them instead of releasing them to Jesus. The weight of unexpressed emotions buried the peace and joy that are always here.

2. I took my eyes off the Prize! Over several days I moved from living freely as a much-loved and accepted child of God, filled with His peace and joy, to striving and doing to gain the approval of man. 

Only Jesus.

Daily. Moment by moment. Choice by choice.

Will you worship Him with me? Here is Casting Crowns with Only Jesus.

let us run with endurance and active persistence the race that is set before us, [looking away from all that will distract us and] focusing our eyes on Jesus, who is the Author and Perfecter of faith [the first incentive for our belief and the One who brings our faith to maturity]  
(Hebrews 12:1b-2a, AMP)

But more than that, I count everything as loss compared to the priceless privilege and supreme advantage of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord [and of growing more deeply and thoroughly acquainted with Him—a joy unequaled]. For His sake I have lost everything, and I consider it all garbage, so that I may gain Christ,   
(Philippians 3:8, AMP)

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