The first lesson was one on selfishness. I can be kind of an egocentric narcissist. (Just to give you an idea I pay so that my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.) It's always been (or at least I thought that it should be) the Chris show.
It started when I was younger and realized that I was smarter than most kids around me. While I never admitted it, a guiding thought in the back of my mind said that if I'm smarter then I'm better. And that's when my ego was born.
Since my earlier years my ego has tamed some and I haven't thought that I was a better human being merely because I was more intelligent than someone else, but the over-inflated ego has remained. It's all about me.
That erroneous idea infected all areas of my life--including my marriage. I put my needs first instead of our needs. I put my wants, my desires at the top of the list. Everything else came second. That doesn't lead to a healthy marriage.
So God has been working in me through that, to show me that life is not about me, it's about everyone. There are seven billion people on this planet, and they're just as important as I am. He's showing me that if I want to live a fulfilling life then I cannot focus on me. That doesn't mean I treat myself like crap and that I don't matter, it just means that I need to keep things in a healthy perspective and put the needs of those around me ahead of my own--especially those of my wife and daughter.
The other word that the Lord has been imparting upon me is submission. It ties in directly with selfishness. Since I've viewed life as all about me it seems natural that I wouldn't want to submit to God. It's my plan for my life because I know what's best for me.
But recently things have happened in my life that are out of my control. For the first time in my life I feel truly helpless. Man is that humbling. I keep wishing and praying for control, but it doesn't come. Nor will the control come, methinks. I'm realizing how out of my control it is and how purely in God's hands my life is. So I'm doing everything I can to submit to Him and let Him take control.
To be honest, this process sucks. I hate it. But I'm surrounded by friends and family who are supporting me through it all and I am truly greatful for all of you.
I am grasping onto Isaiah 43:1-3 "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior."
Wow. This has been more open than I thought it would be. Again, I thank you all for taking the time to be a part of my life and read through this. I continue to ask for your prayers and your support. Have a blessed day!