Tuesday, January 4, 2011

When Things Just Can't Be Fixed

Fixing things is a way of life for some. Take me for instance. I am wired to fix stuff. I love building, repairing, remodeling and doing the kinds of things that makes the broken usable again. I thrive on it. Things I can’t fix distress me, such as: a broken heart, a dissolving marriage, a rebellious teenager, an adult child struggling to make his own decisions, a doctor’s diagnosis, an unsaved person’s unwillingness to accept God’s salvation, a flesh-driven Christian unaware of what exists on the other side of surrender, a viral infection, another person’s regrets, issues, disappointments or baggage, an unexpected and sudden death, the loss of a job, the selfish actions of others that leave scars one carries into adulthood. Of course I could go on and on until I mention something you’re dealing with that remains unfixed, but you get my point. Some things just can’t be fixed by desire, effort or wishing. And for those of us who think they ought to be, that becomes quite heavy.
Answer? Obsess over it or see what the Lord has in mind. With Paul’s thorn issues, he asked for removal only to be told these thorns serve a greater purpose. If he would let them, they would drive him to grace. They would make him desire, receive and cling to the sufficiency of God. It wouldn’t make them any less painful or undesirable, only useful since they then would fulfill a purpose unachievable it they were taken away.
Strange that we would need distress to make us seek God, but how else would be become hungry and thirsty enough to desire what He has? Hunger and thirst are the results of distressing our bodies. We have restricted the intake of what sustains them to the point that cravings take over. Those cravings drive us to the source. I will search for food and water and then eat and drink until I am satisfied.
So the key must be, not to have everything fixed but to reach the point of being satisfied that God is engaged in my life where it touches my need. Discovering His sufficiency is a greater result than having my thorns removed. I’d rather live by the outflow of His grace than have a life with all my stuff fixed.  Because then what would a fixer do? You’ve got to have some things around you that need fixing otherwise you might just forget how important God really is.

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