I'm embarrassed to see the things I blamed on God and the things I demanded of Him. If I call this immaturity, does that assume that I have moved on to a place of maturity? If I assume this, am I prideful? I hope that I have become more mature in my relationship with God... I don't think it's prideful to recognize that I no longer relate to Him as I once did. It isn't prideful if I also recognize that I still have the capacity to become demanding and avoid taking responsibility for my own irresponsible actions. I am to have a teachable spirit... The moment I assume that I have completely conquered something and no longer need to look to God, then I have become prideful and vulnerable.
"Lord, you've got to do something."
God doesn't <have to do anything. I said this when I was praying about something that someone else was doing that is clearly in the realm of her free will. I wanted her to change, and I was demanding that God change her. It was a prayer that God wouldn't answer. If I had prayed differently, He might have answered. I could have prayed that He reveal the truth to her. But I was praying that He make her stop. And why? Because I didn't approve and because I was mad at her for neglecting her friendship with me in order to spend time on something that was wrong morally. My selfishness was also a hindrance in my prayer; and it was something I needed to confront badly. Sadly, my selfishness was also a barrier that made it impossible for God to use me to influence change in her life. If I had dealt with my problem, He might have answered my prayer. But He wasn't obligated, and I treated Him like He was. It was a very irreverent attitude.
I have been behind in my work, which has put me in danger of failing. I do not want to take these classes over again. If it is in Your will for me to stay here longer, Lord, then just tell me. You know that I will obey.
And just how would God know that I would obey??? I had been procrastinating with my work, apparently for quite a while. I wonder what I had spent my time doing. The above doesn't indicate that God might have in mind for me to be in school longer. Being in school longer would be a consequence of MY irresponsible actions. So why should God tell me anything??? Of course, He didn't speak to me in a thunderbolt. This is flawed theology at its best--and it's precisely what Pentecostalism encouraged me to believe in. Is it any wonder I was drowning in doubt?
Fortunately, amid all this stuff, God was working in my heart. The pastor of the Assembly of God I attended was a very wise man, and I stayed at the church because of his teaching. In time, some things happened that led me to seek another church, and this led me for a time to a small nondenominational church and eventually to the Church of God in town. I had left the church several years earlier over significant theological differences with the pastor; but by the time I returned, a new pastor was arriving. His teaching was very solid and down to earth and was very fitting for my needs at the time. I also read a lot, and God often brought to mind things I had learned in the past. Thus I was carried out of my period of immaturity and apathy.