Now that I have a little break from school (praise the Lord for no classes in May) I am playing catch up on my Bible Study. While I still haven’t made it back to my lovely B-stud ladies to catch up with them (hopefully next weekend!), it has been so good to get back into our book. We’re reading Strong Women Soft Hearts by Paula Rinehart and I just finished catching up on Chapter 2 – Desire: The Language of the Heart. Rinehart makes so many great points in this section. She speaks so clearly to, what I believe to be, a commonly held belief that to be a “good Christian woman” you have to give up your desires. But these desires and longings are important. Rinehart quotes Nicole Johnson who says,
I think it is often easy to suppress our desires because they can be scary, intimidating, or even painful. If we don’t pursue our desires we don’t have to worry about failing, we can avoid our fear of the unknown, we can keep things contained in a nice little box…and we don’t have to put our trust in God. Additionally, suppressing desires is often seen as a sacrifice and a way to serve God. But Rinehart says, “God does not deaden desire – rather, he awakens desire and transforms it.” She goes on to quote Eldredge who says:
So rather than pushing our desires to the back of our minds, we need to claim them and pursue them. “As you bring your heart to God, he will place his desire in you to such an extent that your desire becomes his for you. So when you pray about a longing, and the desire remains, you can trust that God has left that in place for a reason.“ That’s really cool, right? I mean, there is a desire in your heart…and as you give your heart to God, your desire can become God’s desire. By praying earnestly about those desires and longings, you can determine what is a real desire…what God has clung to as a desire for you and what he has pushed aside.
So, the challenge: Pursue your desires, pray about your desires, don’t let fear keep you from your desires. Rinehart puts it this way:
Where would desire take you if you didn’t douse the flame of possibility before someone else attempted to blow it out? If you didn’t rain on your own parade?