Drifting. - A Personal Reflection
If you aren't constantly fixing your eyes on truth, immersing yourself in the gospel, connecting with believers who keep you accountable, it is so incredibly easy to drift away from God. There is nothing the enemy likes more than a Christian who is comfortable with where they are--who is no longer searching, eager, on fire for the Great Commission.
If I'm being truthful, I have been that Christian these past weeks. It is inevitable in the Christian life to go through seasons of drought, along with seasons of fire and passion for God. While God the Father is constantly waiting for you, patiently beckoning you to come to Him--it is equally important for you to recognize the call, and act when convicted.
I feel convicted to write right now. Even though I have nothing remarkable to say, no great revelation of some sort, I still wanted to write down what I feel to remember the conviction in my heart.
In the Christian journey, you are either walking towards heaven or towards hell--there is only one or the other. Unfortunately, there is no biblical evidence for purgatory, or hope for redemption after death. The fight isn't over until God decides that it is time for your life to end. And if I am being honest, I feel like I have been diverging gradually onto the path to hell. Don't get me wrong--the only way to receive eternal life is that--receive it as a free gift of grace merited by Jesus's sacrifice on the cross alone. However, true faith in Christ manifests in a desire to grow more and more into Christlikeness. One look at my past few weeks of life, and you would see that I have been far from Christlike.
I have allowed myself to give into anger, bitterness, jealousy, pride, and worst of all--not trusting in God's plan for me. A lot of these emotions have grown out of the anxiety of applying to medical school and my ongoing health battles. It is so easy for my flesh to convince myself that I am alone in these battles. That God has somehow abandoned me or doesn't want what is best for me because I am clearly suffering. But in those moments, I feel a gentle tug and reminder by the Holy Spirit that on the contrary, God is with me in the midst of trial--that His plan is beyond my scope of understanding.
The reason I even decided to attend medical school and chase my dream of becoming a physician is so that I can fulfill my calling to participate in medical ministry, and use physical healing as a way of directing people to spiritual healing. God confirmed this calling to me in my Junior year of college, when I felt a push to keep going on the pre-med route, despite a rooted doubt that I would ever actually get there. At that point, I committed this entire dream to God, and repeatedly asked God to remove any sort of selfish desire or idolization of medical school from my heart. Slowly, I began to let go of my desire to control everything and every outcome. I realized that God is the author of it all. That any worldly success I attain is a gift of grace that I have no merit or entitlement over.
By God's grace, He led me to the point at which I am now a competitive applicant to medical school. And now--in the final leg of my application process--the interview stage, I am beginning to panic and revert back to my old, untrusting, self-relying self. The irony of it is so painful. However, again by His grace, I am being reminded of why I'm here and how I got here.
Because it wasn't me to begin with, I have absolute nothing to fear going into the interview stage. All I need to do is release my fears and doubts to God, "casting my cares on Him" and allowing Him to do the rest. I am still going to prepare--don't get me wrong--but I am not going to stress about the outcome because it is in His hands.
As for my ongoing health issues for which I am seeking treatment, I am trying to find meaning in this period of suffering by realizing that this suffering is momentary. In this life, we will experience pain and suffering, but it is so short compared to eternity filled with joy, love, and peace with the Father. Instead of trying to fix myself and seeking answers to why I am experiencing this suffering, I am beginning to release this fear to God.
So, to future Ariel--don't forget why you are where you are. God has been behind the scenes this entire time, writing the poem of your life.
To those who are drifting, there is hope. The very feeling of conviction means that the holy spirit is in you and that God is still waiting for you with open arms. It is only up to you to receive it.
P.S. Sorry for the rambling--this is probably my most disorganized post to date.