Recently I have been comforted and encouraged by 2 attributes of God that previously I hadn’t considered at great length. Every attribute of God is incredible and an undeserved blessing to my life. The way that God is faithful and consistent with me I am finding is something that I have taken for granted for most of my spiritual life. Often I appreciate and strive for change, spontaneity, mixing it up, not getting stuck in ruts, and enjoying life as it comes. Why? because there are fun things to do, explore and engage in around me! It is good for our brains to stay active and do something new everyday. It keeps things interesting and fun! While all of those things are true and totally appropriate, honestly, sometimes it is easier and requires less effort and memory to be inconsistent or lazy.
On the other hand, I realize that a garden grows best when you don’t fiddle with the soil all the time. Food cooks best on a BBQ or in an oven when it is undisturbed. Cars run better when you put the same gas in it. The body recharges itself most effectively during uninterrupted sleep. Our world depends on the consistency of nature; waves, water, photosynthesis, sunrise and sunset, etc. Tenure is accrued when you don’t keep changing jobs. Likewise, my soul is best cultivated and refined by a God who is refining it in a faithful and consistent way.
On my wedding day one thing my dad told Gavin was that my whole life he made it a point to communicate where he was emotionally, physically and spiritually and he asked Gavin to be diligent to continue in his new role. My dad was very diligent to do that and it blessed my life to have a dad that I could depend on and trust that he would be the same day in and day out and boy did he do that! He has the 30 year old wool shirts, gear, volvo, house, garden, bible, preferences and lifestyle to prove it. How that pales in comparison to how God is faithful and consistent with us!
This is by no means to say that God or His people are to be boring or should lack creative power! God’s incredible diversity is displayed all over His creation we can’t begin to comprehend it. While God does have the creative power to have the sun rise a different color everyday He thought it best and most kind to meekly have the sun shine orange everyday of it’s existence. He is also faithful to provide a unique and amazing sunset every night. What a blessing it is to have a heavenly Father, Son, and Holy Spirit who are unchanging; God’s Word is unchanging. God’s Creation is unchanging. God’s plan of salvation is unchanging. What He asks of His people is unchanging. How He responds to us is unchanging. What a great reminder and challenge for me, to find ways to be spontaneous and fun inside of a greater structure of being faithful and consistent. What a challenge it would be to please a God who was constantly changing and updating His standards and plans. How discouraging it would be to not know if what I brought to Him would be heard, accepted, received, or true.
As a mom I can see how much it helps and blesses my kids when I am faithful and consistent with them. It helps them to know that mommy’s response will always be the same and that my character is one that they can trust. When they disobey it comes as no surprise that there is a consequence to follow. The home runs better when our day is scheduled and consistent. They don’t have to wonder how or if I will respond like a lose cannon. They don’t know what is for dinner, but they know that they will eat it. When they get hurt, my response is the same to have compassion on them. Being a faithful and consistent mom takes away the guessing game and stress of the unknown and cultivates their trust in me that I will do what I say I will do when I say I will do it. They know what is required and how to operate within those unchanging boundaries. While this is my aim, daily I fail miserably at carrying it out. Only by His faithful and consistent grace in my life can I do anything well that pleases Him or blesses my family. I am amazed at the self-control, diligence, patience and long suffering of our Lord since the beginning of time! Knowing how faithful and consistent God is is amazing and encourages and motivates me to strive for and ask the Lord to make my own life that way. This is totally easier said than done and staying the course day in and day out takes more discipline and diligence than doing what ever I feel or how the wind blows. But the blessings are far more and are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. My greatest desire is to have a heart that rests in the faithful and consistent, fertilizing, tilling, planting, and eventually fruitful care of our triune God who does not change like shifting shadows. Praise the Lord that we have that and can rest in knowing that the He will do what He says He will do, His Word will do the Work, His Spirit will refine and intercede for us and none of it will change.