I made a decision less than a year ago about moving into an apartment in Berkeley and though the logic of it all was screaming "yes" at me, I knew God was telling me "no". I couldn't accept this "no" because I thought I had done everything right and taken all the proper steps. I found people who all were very involved in church and ministry and who loved the Lord. I drove up north and met them, and skyped with others I couldn't meet. Yet through all of this I consistently felt like God was telling me no, and I consistently ignored Him, and couldn't fathom what other plan He had in store for me.
Seven months later and I am alive and well, living with these people in this house... safe... well looked after... cared about. Things have generally worked out though there have been numerous bumps in the road, I am grateful to have met my roommates. Still, I cannot shake the feeling that this was not supposed to be the path I took, and I feel that I daily/weekly suffer the consequences for it in many different ways.
It's ironic because in this past year with this new adventure to Berkeley, my overall life lesson has been that the consequences of sin are great, and that the Bible is simply helping us to live a life without harsh consequences. I see this in my patients mostly. Many deal with substance abuse, others with mental health issues that oftentimes stem from years of abuse. I recently had a patient who was a middle-aged woman who had struggled with alcohol all her life. This person was in end stage liver disease and yet could not stop drinking. The consequences of her actions... her sins... are great. This woman will never see her daughter be married... will never meet her grandchildren. This will most likely have major consequences upon her daughter as well - maybe even sending her into a lifetime of substance abuse.
God speaks to us in many ways. For me, He uses the Bible and He uses my ability to discern. I ignored both of these things in choosing to move into this house and now I must suffer the consequences. When will we realize that His Word is alive and ready to help us today? When will we accept this not as a burden... and not as something we want to construe and make up as many rules to get out of it... but fully accept it for what it is - an act of love.
Happy Valentine's Day. Oh how He loves us.