Monday, March 19, 2012

Songs for a Broken Record, Part 3

(From There Is a Bird On Your Head! which might very well be my new favorite Elephant and Piggie book!)

A week or so ago, I linked to this post by Nancy Wilson and shared this quote:

Spurgeon said that we can’t keep the birds from flying over our heads, but we can keep them from building a nest in our hair. But if there are already some nests settled in, ask God to help you pull them out. Then listen to what kind of company you have been keeping with your thoughts. If it’s bad company, show them the door.

The idea of Worry Birds building a nest in my hair has stuck with me. Unfortunately, so has the worry and the frustration of the nest construction. Furthermore, the Worry Birds are breeding! This past weekend I hit a wall and lost it. I finally had my first big cry after being displaced from our house a month and a half ago. We're so very close to getting back into it, but we aren't quite there yet. It is frustrating. (Also, it is seriously not easy trying to arrange to move with three small children.) I liken this part of our journey out of home to the tail end of pregnancy. Oh, you know that baby is coming. But that baby is never. going. to. come! Fun times.

There is a bird on my head.

At one point I got in the car to run errands and I had a Steve Green cassette in the player. This song was being played:

The Refiner's fire
Has now become my souls desire
Purged and cleansed and purified
That the Lord be glorified
He is consuming my soul
Refining me, making me whole
No matter what I may lose
I choose the Refiner's fire

Only the problem was, this fire was not my soul's desire at the time. My soul's desire was something else entirely. I craved instant relief. (Ok, ok, ok . . . I still do.)

I'm learning now to trust His touch
To crave the fire's embrace
For though my past with sin was etched
His mercies did erase
Each time His purging cleanses deeper
I'm not sure that I'll survive
Yet the strength in growing weaker
Keeps my hungry soul alive

I'm learning. And sometimes it really doesn't feel like I'll survive. It's not the losing of stuff that bothers me. It's the stress and testing involved in losing it. If I could just take it all to Goodwill and dump it myself, I'd be in a much less strained position. And I would also feel gloriously in charge - which is what I really want to be.

But isn't that the way we typically feel about dealing with sin? Oh, sure, we're happy to deal with it if we can do so in our own way and in our own time. Easy enough to make our own decisions. But the removal of sin from our life generally produces pain. God confronts our blackened hearts and sick souls and says, "Be holy." And we say, "Ok! That sounds GREAT! I like the sound of holiness!" Then He begins the process of sanctifying us and making us holy so that we can stand in His presence and suddenly it's not so great. We're not in control. We're in His hands and we have only to respond with humility and gratefulness. Oh, and did I mention that we're also supposed to be patient and wait for His timing in completing the sanctifying process?! Yeah. It's really fun.

But it is good.

I still have birds and nests to knock out of my hair. I have kept company with bad thoughts this weekend and have taken on worries that I should not have. I haven't trusted and I insisted on having my way. I didn't get my way. I got a lesson on submitting all things to the Lord instead. And I'm reminded that His timing is not always my timing. His timing is perfect.

Lord, please show me everyday
As You're teaching me Your way
That You do just what You say
In Your Time


  1. I think I would be frustrated, too, and having to learn some of the same lessons. The end of this particular experience will come eventually, just as that unborn baby eventually does, but I trust the lessons will remain. Only if you're like me, God has to take us through refresher courses and remedial studies occasionally.

  2. I am not the least bit surprised that a breaking point took a long time to arrive. Love, hugs, and most importantly prayers for you!

  3. SIGH
    Good post.
    Stupid nests.

  4. We love those books! Thanks for the intro!

    1. Considering the fact that you do not like pigs - I consider that a great victory!!! ;D

  5. Great post! Martin quoted that about the birds building nests on our heads in the sermon last night. So funny to see that again.

    I'm sort of impressed that you held out so long from your first big cry. Very grateful for your honesty. I'm still praying things work out soon!

  6. Oh girlfriend! Do I ever hear ya! Love this post and your "being real", I've been wondering how you are managing to hold it together so well! ;) This was an emotional post. First I was nodding and sighing along in understanding of hitting the wall, breeding birds, and "big cry." Then I chuckled at the cassette (for I still use cassettes as well, wonder how MP3 works, anyway?!). Then conviction, acknowledging my need to surrender to the fire, give up control, welcome the *process* of sanctification.

    Think I'll need to come back and read this one again! You're in my prayers this evening.

  7. You know, Carrie, God has used your honesty here to remind many of your readers that we must trust Him, including me. Thank you.

  8. Bless your heart!

    When Grasshopper was born, we were away from home for a total of 4 months. We were mostly okay until the end when they told us this and this has to happen. We were SO close, and there was such disappointment when something didn't work out. I know that you're in that hardest stage right now. I'll pray extra hard for you!