I am beginning to understand that I don't see myself how God sees me. Perhaps this is all about an identity crisis?
Can you relate? Please share.
I do now realize another component to this chapter that is causing me to dig deeper: Psalm 107 and rebellion against God.
Just as Beth points out, verse 12 is startling. God "subjected them to bitter labor... and there was no one to help."
I believe that God wants only the best for us. I have to really pray about how He handles us when we are rebellious.
Perhaps I'm hung up on this chapter because it touches a very deep place in my being. I grew up with the "fear of God," but it was in the way that I feared His wrath. While I knew "Jesus loves the little children," I didn't always focus on that. I focused on "obeying God or else."
Please let me say that I wasn't abused and I don't remember anybody cramming this idea down my throat. I do remember being afraid of God, though. I'm not sure how this way of thinking became a true concept for me.
As an adult (over the past 2 years), I have come to know a very loving God. God is love. While I've known this for a very long time, I don't think it was a true reality... just a concept. Does that make sense?
Maybe I need to spend a lot of time meditating on God's unfailing love and the freedom that comes with it, ie., Chapter 34. That would make sense considering how much I've thought about all I've done wrong and why couldn't possibly love me as much as He says He does.
Now, is this teetering on unbelief?
Whew! I'm exhausted! I'm at that point where there's a lot to process, but I do believe the truth is coming to the surface.
Thank you for listening.
I realize that I need to spend a lot more time with this chapter, but I am going to move on... coming back often to meditate on Chapter 34 until I realize the full scope of what God is trying to teach me here.
I feel like I might find the answers as I move on...
LOL... I just peeked at the next chapters to see if anything popped out at me. After reading the titles to Chapters 35-37, I am feeling like Chapter 36 (Failure to Believe God's Unfailing Love) could help. ; )
God is good!
Stop, Drop, and Pray. Then, let's move on... revisiting when we need to... but moving forward in the quest for knowledge! : )