We Need What We Would Never Choose

Lately I’ve talked with some friends who are hurting. I should say, who are *also* hurting.

From my tiredness, feeling like a towel that has been wrung, all I feel is twisted and dry. I feel very cautious about saying anything about the hurt. 

Though poets and celebrated authors have received acclaim and income from quantifying pain in the moment it is felt, I step lightly, tentatively around the discoveries made while in my own pain, until I am even just a step or two ahead on the path, and can look back and evaluate which parts were truth, mined from His Word, illuminated by God’s Spirit, and which parts were (for me) exploitative, manipulative, self-pitying feelings.

Through my own mess and exhaustion I can say that I am seeing God soften and shave off areas that have needed His editing for a long time.

I needed to be humbled and broken.

I needed for some of my comforts to be stripped of me.

I needed for Him to give me what I would never have chosen.

We NEED What We Would Never Choose // JessConnell.com

 

And then– gulp– because I see that NOW, I have to also acknowledge that whatever else He sends in my life, is what I will need, so that in the end I look more like Jesus. No matter how painful.

It would be easier not to see that– but God keeps reminding me that His goal for me isn’t for me to be supermom but to be like JESUS.

He is FIERCE about it. Committed to it. His aim– the dot on the target for me– is Christ-like-ness.

If somehow, through His tenacious grace, I persevere and cling to Him, the most gracious thing He can give me is the trials I would never choose. Part of the most true LOVE He can pour out on me is to send the rain and the wind in my life… to pelt me with hail, yes, sometimes even in my bruised spots.

And at that very same time, there is comfort & security there. He is a safe person to “fail” and fall in front of. No one needs to tell Him about mankind. He knows our weakness– that we are dust. He tells us that He will not break the one who is bruised. His love is dependable– He never fails.

When He sends the hard times, He does it for my good. He does it with eternity in mind. He does it knowing that my sanctification needs to be accomplished this way. He does it, knowing ME better than I know myself.

We need what we would never choose.

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Jess Connell

Jesus-follower, Happy wife, Mom of 8 neat people. Former world-traveler, now settled in Washington. Host of Mom On Purpose podcast (momonpurpose.com). I write and wrangle kids.

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7 Responses

  1. Jennifer Collins says:

    Dear Jess. Thank you so much for sharing with us as you walk through the fire. I am hurting, too. In a way I never expected – by my young adult daughter making choices completely contrary to the way we have raised her. I’ve spent 21 years parenting her with my whole heart and I’ve never felt this kind of pain. But, I also don’t remember seeking the Lord with this complete abandon. I will continue to commit myself to prayer and seeking His will and His wisdom for my husband and me, which He gives us generously without finding fault. I, too am experiencing some of the lessons you write about in your post. May Christ continue to surround us with His love and grace.

  2. Christina says:

    Great…. not sure I wanted to know this —- lol

  3. Emily says:

    Jess,
    I’ve read your blog for years now and this is THE BEST post you have written! Thank you for your heart, your vulnerability and transparency and the way you gently, but boldly, shared truth! I feel like I’m coming out of a season of constant “pelting” and it has left me broken and exhausted. But it has also left me filled and clinging to Jesus. Its not the path I would have chosen at all; but its still good. Better (now that I can see it more fully). Cant wait to see what happens when God rolls back the curtain for you and the full picture is seen! Love ya friend

  4. A friend sent this post to me and I have been sending it on to others because it so good and such an encouragement. My family is going through a terribly difficult time. Pain unimaginable, but God’s grace keeps seeing us through. I would not have chosen this path for my sanctification. Never! Ever! God knows what I need and trusting Him is the only way I am surviving…

    Thank your for sharing your heart….Keep speaking truth, sister!

  5. Debbie Coleman says:

    I saw a quote recently – a quote from Yoda – ha!
    “You must unlearn what you have learned.”
    And, it seems at times in our lives, that is the case, and it helps us to do that, but sometimes, what we have learned, helps us take healthy steps forward. Sometimes, it’s not the path we would have chosen, but God’s gentle nudging shows us that we need to keep going. He helps us each and every step of the way. Maybe we need to “undo” what we have always done. That might be a better way of saying it.
    A great article, and very uplifting to all of us who go through trials and hard times.

  1. October 7, 2015

    […] We NEED What We Would Never Choose […]

  2. January 31, 2017

    […] And He didn’t need the hard things in order to be holy. But we do. We need what we would never choose.  […]

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