Something that I have hesitated to document in my blog occurred during the period when I was going through newly diagnosed cancer, a second cancer and a third cancer, along with all the treatments and surgeries over the past few years. Finally, I decided to put this strange happening in my blog with the thought that others may go through similar things and this remembrance might be a help.
In my life, I have tended to move back and forth between shame and pride. If I blew something, I put on the garment of shame and totally absorbed the devastation of it. If I did something well, pride puffed me up in spite of efforts to fight it. Both of these extremes have been very destructive.
During the intense part of my battle with cancer, I had an interesting and weird experience. Very literally, my mind played videos of my past failures (sins of commission and omission) in perfect clarity and detail. These occurred in my brain one after another in a very orderly fashion. Instead of repeating my usual practice of donning my cloak of shame, I took each revelation of sin to God in repentance as they came up. It was a hard, but very cleansing time. It felt like it brought self righteousness to death in me. I found judging others, which I was prone to do, much diminished.
There finally reached a time when these videos stopped playing in my mind and I thought this whole process was complete. I counted myself a different person and had much less problems with the cloak of shame dropping over me at the least error. However, in all honesty, pride still puffed me up easily over the most minor achievement.
This week something happened which could have turned destructive or constructive. Thankfully, it ended on a positive note.
I had a huge argument with Lee over something minor, and it left me with intense self-doubt. On top of that, I offended someone when I responded to something she said with what I thought was constructive advice. The two events together led me to seek God’s face.
The upshot of this whole story is that I landed smack in a word from God– Proverbs 3:7. ”Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.” That took me to another verse–Isaiah 5:21. ”Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight.”
It hit me that this was still a problem for me. It was the next step in the cleansing and humbling process. I thought that I had wisdom to offer.
Here is the joy in the discovery. I can learn to be quiet and wait upon the Lord. Change is a choice available to me. Thank you Jesus!