It Sounds Like God To Me

© Copyright 2007 by Phil Scovell - All Rights Reserved



                                      51

                           The Consolation Prize


                               By Carol Pearson






     One day recently I reached for a chocolate bar.  It was far too hot to
     bother to get  anything else to eat  and, anyway, I felt  pressured by
     others and a  bit down.  Things  weren't going too well;  that sinking
     feeling down into  "depression" was crowding in  on me.  As  I reached
     for the  chocolate, I realized  again how many  times I had  done this
     before.   It had become a well-worn path over more than fifty years of
     my  life!  Yes, I wanted it somehow  to be a consolation to me at that
     very moment!  I knew, Even if I'd done something wrong  or just hadn't
     quite achieved, the chocolate WOULD help me to feel "Just a bit better
     about myself and my situation!   Again (as I had many  times before) I
     reminded the Lord that I had  been concerned about my "habit" (to  eat
     this wonderful tasting "stuff" for a while now but I was  powerless to
     do anything  about it.  I told  Him again that I wanted  Him to reveal
     any  root cause  and show me  if I  should leave it  alone completely.
     Again, I found myself thinking that perhaps I could just cut  it down.
     At that point "discipline" came to the fore and I ate just a third  of
     the bar and put the rest away until another time!
          Later that day  my mind flashed back  to the thoughts I  had when
     taking the  chocolate and then,  as if a light  had been turned  on, I
     found myself thinking about an occasion much earlier in my life when I
     was a  junior at  boarding school.   I  recalled much  detail of  this
     memory, although this has not always  been the case when the Lord  has
     healed me from past  wounds and wrong thinking.  At that time we had a
     visit from a  researcher who  was most interested  to learn how  blind
     people "tick",  what sort of  things we  could do, how  imaginative we
     were and whether we could learn a complicated little route.   His test
     were quite numerous and varied and I  quite enjoyed them.  We listened
     to a series of noises and had  to tell a story around them, adding  to
     the story as each noise was given to us.  We had a maize through which
     we  had to walk and most of us  got horribly lost.  We had yet another
     test  which involved  working out  exactly  where a  sound came  from.
     There were others also,  but I don't remember them now.   I do however
     remember that  after each  test we were  rewarded with  small bars  of
     chocolate.  It  seemed to me that  some friends got more  than others,
     and perhaps this was because they were better  at the tests but it may
     have been  because they were "the  favorites", and of course  I didn't
     like that  very much.  However, we all  got some chocolate each time a
     test was given and that was the best part of taking the tests and made
     it all worthwhile!  Truly, when we had done badly, the chocolate was a
     consolation!
          As I had  seen that flashback to  that memory so clearly,  I then
     saw His truth as He revealed it to me!  "That's right, Lord," I  said:
     "The chocolate was 'my consolation' - it was given to me whether I did
     well or  badly.   I  reflected, "It  was given  at other  times in  my
     childhood  also.  It was  the way to say "Thank  you very much, little
     girl, for your services" as, on a number of occasions, I was forced to
     please  relations and  friends of  the  family as  they allowed  their
     sexual desires to have full pleasure as they did what they wished with
     a small, frightened child.  The  chocolate bars were the presents  for
     "being a  good little girl  and saying  nothing to anyone  about these
     terrifying experiences!" Again, the bars  of chocolate were given as a
     consolation from Daddy when there was nothing else he could give to me
     when he  had been away working  and I had not been  able to understand
     where he was and why he had left me!  Yes, they were my "consolations"
     and "my comforts" and I enjoyed them!
          I  understood a long  time ago that people  often took comfort in
     their eating  and even knew that I did it myself, but now, as He spoke
     into my situation  and thinking, this  became personal to  me.  I  was
     able to understand  where this root had its beginnings and to face the
     lies which emerged every time I ate the chocolate!  I knew how Dad had
     felt so much better when  he gave me the chocolate on  his return from
     another work trip, but the gift he bore each time soon became a "must"
     for his little girl  who needed the  comfort she thought it  afforded!
     The chocolate had also served to help those who took  me to their beds
     to feel better about what  they had done to me and be  reasonably sure
     that I  would keep  quiet.   I had  to face  it though,  that it  only
     satisfied for  a little while, then I needed some  more to be "my fix"
     for depression, loneliness,  bereavement, disappointments and  so many
     other problems in  my life.  I  needed that chocolate time  and again!
     What a ghastly state.  I knew without a doubt that I  was certainly no
     better than  those who abuse their  bodies with drugs and  alcohol and
     all I could do was to cry out to the Lord for His victory for me!
          I acknowledged before  my Heavenly Father that  I had substituted
     all that He had to give to me and all that He would do for me with "my
     temporary fix" of  chocolate.  For  years, I had  said time and  again
     that I wanted to know the riches of God and His abundance  in my life,
     but over  and over again I  had chosen my own  comfort!  I knew  I had
     treated my Heavenly Father very  badly in taking the chocolate instead
     of  asking for His mercy and  great riches.  I  poured out my heart to
     Him  and asked His forgiveness.  Then  I waited quietly to see what He
     would  say to me.  I knew He  would speak because otherwise I would be
     left with a problem far too big for me to address!  I knew well enough
     that He would not leave me comfortless but He would come to  me!  (See
     John 14:18.)  He had  spoken  those words  to me,  as  He did  to  His
     disciples, on a number of occasions  during my walk with Him, so  they
     were very precious!
          He showed me a picture.  A tiny baby lay in His arms.  (Yes, that
     baby was me.) There was a large comfort blanket tucked under  my chin.
     I had been sucking it, because it was my comforter.  As I fell asleep,
     He gently removed  it.  Then, something  else happened.  He  spread me
     out in  front of Him  and began  to breathe into  my nostrils.   I was
     receiving the very life  of God Himself!   I could no longer use  that
     blanket to meet my needs because  now they were being met by  the very
     breath of God as He continued to fill  me!  I had nothing to do except
     just to lie there and take in the pure sustaining Spirit of God!
          Now that  He has spoken clearly to me  and answered my prayers, I
     know my need can no more be met with a bar of chocolate!  When I find,
     for  any reason, that I  am not coping  with pain and  grief, fear and
     frustration, or  anything at all  that separates me from  Jesus Christ
     and causes me to move from my place of rest, I have  to go directly to
     the One Who Satisfies.  Taking  the chocolate first and then going  to
     My Father in Heaven is no longer an option for me.  He requires that I
     go straight to Him and find He  has more than enough to supply all  my
     need!  I have thanked Him that, by His grace alone, He will work  this
     in me to His glory!
          It has been very important here that God has come to me in answer
     to my  prayers and spoken with me about this problem I had in my life.
     Hearing from  others about  the hold  of a  habit in  a life  and even
     agreeing with them is not enough!  We have to invite the King of Kings
     and Lord  of Lords  to come  in and take  His rightful  place.   He is
     gracious and  heals and  restores.   He does  not condemn  us for  our
     weakness.   He  understands it and  makes us  strong as He  deals with
     everything  that we have  placed before Him  in our lives.   There are
     some  who believe  that they do  live completely without  sin in their
     lives now that they  are Christians.  Well, I long for  that day to be
     true in my life,  but I choose right now to  acknowledge the truth and
     confess God's Word, as the Apostle John  wrote in his first letter: If
     we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not
     in us.  If we confess our sins,  he is faithful and just to forgive us
     [our] sins, and  to cleanse us  from all unrighteousness.   If we  say
     that we  have not sinned, we make  him a liar, and his  word is not in
     us.  (1 John 1:8-10 AV).
          One day I will know  the joy of the power of  Jesus living always
     and forever in my life.  Meantime, I do still reach for that chocolate
     occasionally, but  now have  a far greater  understanding of  what I'm
     doing (yes,  committing sin) if  I take it  to pacify some need  in my
     life which God wants to meet!  Then I have to confess it, get up again
     and go on giving all to Him and asking Him to show His power in me!
          I don't know  what things you find yourself reaching for when the
     going gets tough, but  He knows and, if you will only ask Him, He will
     work a  miracle  in your  life that  will free  you  from any  bondage
     however long you have been bound by  it!  We cannot free ourselves but
     we can want Him to free us!  He is our God and He has the right to say
     to us, "You shall have no other god but Me"!  That simply means having
     nothing to depend upon (trust or rely upon) or give our  affections to
     that takes His rightful place!
          We can  be in bondage  to many things  or people.  We  have wrong
     relationships  where we  seek  to  serve  another  person,  (sometimes
     allowing  our flesh  to be gratified).   We  go on doing  what pleases
     others and  not what pleases God!  We get  into such messes and cannot
     help ourselves out of them.  Praise  God!  He waits to be gracious  to
     us and to free us from everything that does not glorify Him!
          God doesn't  give Himself  as "a consolation".   He  gave Himself
     fully  when He  sent His son  to die  on a cross  for each  one of us,
     taking with Him all  the sin of a fallen, depraved world!   He doesn't
     offer a  consolation prize for being good because  none of us are good
     in His eyes, but He does offer us His grace in  abundance which brings
     us from  darkness into His  wonderful light and  sets us on  course to
     gain that prize of eternal life with Him which He has for every one of
     us if we  will live according to His  rules!  Put very  simply, we win
     only as  we put Him first in all things and love Him with all our mind
     and soul  and strength and  that means putting nothing  before Him and
     allowing  Him daily  to  satisfy  all the  longings  of our  grieving,
     hurting, wounded, sin-sick souls.  Will you go there with me and offer
     up to Him whatever it is that you reach for to satisfy every pain that
     you  bear today?  If you will do  this, He will give to you much, much
     more than you could ever dare to imagine.
          If you  want to  do this  but need  help to  share your  pain and
     suffering with Him, Safe Place Fellowship offers you help and security
     as you find  your way through whatever  troubles you to that  place of
     wholeness in God as we find His provision to be sufficient for all our
     needs!