January 7, 2020

Let Go and Grow

Written by Shana Schutte

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – January 7, 2020

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:11-13

In 2005, when I was still unmarried, I moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado to write and edit for a large Christian media organization. Six years later, I sensed the Lord leading me to move away. Although sad, I knew it was time to go. But before leaving, there was one thing I wanted to do: go on a final hike in my favorite park, Garden of the Gods. 

As I walked along a trail I loved that sits high above the main park area, I looked down on gorgeous, towering sandstone formations and a song came on my iPod by Steven Curtis Chapman. The first words were, “It’s time for letting go.” Tears flowed and my heart broke as I prepared to say goodbye to a city that had felt like home. 

In the almost ten years since my departure from Colorado Springs, I have looked back on some of my time there with regret as I have considered poor decisions I made, unsafe people I should have avoided, and relationships that broke my heart while living there. Honestly, several years of my time there have felt like a waste. 

But something happened a few days ago to change my perspective. 

A friend of mine married last weekend in Colorado Springs and I attended the ceremony. The day before the event, I had a few extra hours to kill, so my husband suggested, “Why don’t you go on a hike in Garden of the Gods?”

As I pulled into the parking lot, I remembered my last hike there. I remembered the Steven Curtis Chapman song; I remembered my tears, and I remembered the grief of letting go. As I stepped onto the same trail where I had cried, I felt different. I had left Colorado broken, sad, and grieving, and now I was back with new inner strength. God had changed me. I knew it and it felt good. A thought entered my mind. “Haven’t I been faithful?” 

It was as if the Lord was saying, “See? I have brought you full circle. You are new. You are now filled with joy and strength and hope. Haven’t I been faithful?” “Yes, indeed, Lord. You have truly been faithful.” 

With this recognition, the judgments I had placed on my past experiences in bitterness of heart fell away. And when they fell away, I knew I could finally learn from them. When I was busy judging what happened in my life, not from a position of discernment, but from a position of hatred that they happened, I couldn’t learn from what had occurred. But now, with the hope that comes from knowing it has all worked out because of Him, I can look back in gratitude and a heart to see the good that has come from what happened in my life. 

Perhaps you can relate. Maybe you have experienced some troubles. Perhaps you have made some poor choices. Maybe during a particular season your heart was wounded, and you’ve thought, “What a mess! I don’t see anything good coming from that.” 

Maybe it’s time for you to look back and see how the Lord has been faithful on your journey so you can learn from what happened, rather than resent what happened. 

There are good things that can come from all things because He redeems all things. 

“The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease”(Lamentations 3:22).

Prayer

Lord, thank you that you are the God who heals hearts. Thank you that you want to bring good from all things that happen in my life. Please help me to learn the lessons you want me to know, rather than resent the past. Amen.


Application

Take a look back. Are there any experiences in your life that you resent, that you have thought “Nothing good can come from this”? If so, ask the Lord to show you what He wants you to learn from what has happened.


Related Reading

Isaiah 55:12; 2 Thessalonians 3:3; Hebrews 11:1


Post/Tweet today

When we let go we are able to grow in our love for God and in our trust in His faithfulness. #WisdomHunters #Jesus #truth #letgo


Worship Resource

3 minute video- Steven Curtis Chapman: 


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