I recently heard a great story about a couple who was in marriage counseling. After battling through several sessions with little progress, the counselor sat them down and gave them each a piece of paper. "I want each of you to take a few minutes and write down all of your spouse's faults that you wish they didn't have."
The husband and wife both started writing furiously, almost giddily, certain that they were finally getting somewhere. "Now this counselor will see what I put up with," she thought. "Now we can finally start to fix this woman," the husband told himself.
When the papers were filled and the writing had stopped, the counselor took the sheets, handed them each a blank page, and said, "Now I'd like you to make a list of the faults you would rather that your spouse have."
I've been having a similar conversation with God today.
"Lord, why did you make me so insecure? And my organizational skills--really? No disrespect, but what were You thinking? And while I'm at it... let's talk about my parenting shortfalls. And my impatience. And my lack of will-power when it comes to anything chocolate... or ice cream... or nacho chips. Lord... why all of these faults?"
"So... you aren't a fan of your faults, eh? What faults would you like to have?"
"Ummmm... well... I was thinking I could just be me... but without the faults."
"Sorry, kiddo. It doesn't work that way. Everybody has shortcomings. It's part of being human."
"But how can I glorify You when I am so... fallen?"
"I think you know the answer. I know that you've read, memorized, and repeated this many times over, but let me remind you again...
I Corinthians 12:9-10 'But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.'
My power is made perfect in your weakness. You don't glorify Me, Katy. I glorify Myself through you."
"So... the weaknesses are good things? I'm supposed to delight in them? Boast in them?"
"You got it. That doesn't mean that you stop trying to improve. But it does mean that you trust Me. Trust that I knew what I was doing when I made you. Trust that I don't make mistakes. Trust that I have a plan for the big and the small. Trust."
I don't get it, I really don't. It seems logical that I would be more effective if I were more confident, more organized, more... well, perfect. But maybe it's not about logic. "For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength... But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong." (I Corinthians 1:25 & 27)
And I do trust Him... I don't always understand Him, but I do trust Him.
And really, I haven't come up with the list of faults I would rather have...