Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Life, what a joy!!!

Today I continue to spend my time fulfilling my responsibility to work, but at this moment I feel the urge to pause and reflect on a joyful experience the past few days have been. More from the messages that I hear and the way that I can see God trying to reach me and lead me closer to Him. Sure it would be easy for me to sit here and write about how obedient I am and how I have heard God's call and I am on my way, but the truth is I have heard God's call, but I am not comfortable with what I am hearing.

In a nutshell I am somewhat frightened and I know where those thoughts are coming from and my friends they are not of God. Amidst my day to day things, I have come across financial issues that are a consequence of my own misjudgement of current situations and obligations, not to mention my desire for immidiate satisfaction. Then I have come across a plumbing problem in our house as we have a drain that is potentially collapsed. This would be something I could deal with if only affected on part of the house, I could simply shut down the areas affected by this plumbing until our budget could handle the repair. But this so happens to effect the same plumbing as our Laundry washer.

For now we as a family must adjust to a not so common inconvenience to us. In addition for some time now, our dishwasher has not worked and again we simple can't just repair or replace it this has a financial value. So we have resorted to handwashing the dishes. Fortunately, allthough my wife and kids don't agree, I recently had the opportunity to help a friend with kitchen clean-up in his home in France. This reminded me of when I was growing up and some strange sort of way I have had fun washing the dishes by hand...thus I have not been too motivated to get the dishwasher repaired.

You might say that I have learned to cope and adjust to things around me, but now it is affecting others, not just me. We shall see what happens as we as a family work to get our budget under God's control and thus begin to make wise financial decisions...not to mention what this will do for me as I continue to seek to grow with and towards God.

Now for the good part, the joyful part...the recent messages that I have heard

  • You have to work for it
  • Choose your God
  • Being stripped of everything until all that is left is Jesus

Recently I heard a sermon preached and during the sermon the preacher showed how he had lost 50 pounds over the past year. He pointed out how when people ask him how, that in reality none of them want to really know, you see they just want to hear about a magic pill. He had a comedic response about it being painful to lose the weight but in the end a Tapeworm did the trick...but in reality he stated that he narrowed the secret down to 2 things.

  1. Less Couch
  2. Less Colories

Bottom line it was about working hard. Myself having lost 50 pounds over the past year, I was able to relate to this lesson. Somehow I could hear God calling specifically to me, but in other areas of my life...I will get into those details at anothet time, but needless to say, God is calling me!!!

Second I listed Choose your God. This is in reference to this week-ends sermon regarding the defining of Elijah. In the sermon he points out that Elijah did not need validation for his belief in the Lord as God. When he put the challenge out to the followers of Baal he simply told them if Baal is God the go to Baal, if the Lord is God then go to the Lord. He spent no time convincing them which one they should choose, but basically told them to put up or shut up. Choose your God. This really spoke to me. Not that I don't know who God is nor that I am confused about the Lord. I know and in writing and speaking will tell you that the Lord is my God and that I am a follower of Jesus Christ. However what spoke to me was my lack of faith in obedience to Him in every area of my life.

You see I struggle with a multitude of sins, some that are basically addictions. I run to these magic pills when I should run to God. I could sense God telling me to rely on Him. I'm not sure in clear detail what this means to me and what I must change, but I know that I am being called to something that in my eyes and in God's eyes are big. Again I stand with some fear as to what He is calling me to and what I must endure in obedience.

Finally last night a dear friend spoke and made a statement about being stripped of everything until all you have left is Jesus. WOW!!! Talk about a right hook to the jaw. God was speaking directly to me through the actions of another. Through the pain and trouble of another. I listened and then I later spoke with my wife. God is calling me to something and I feel as though he has been knocking on my door for 11 1/2 years, but my fear has paralyzed me.

Fortunately God is taking me on a journey and although I would love to discard everything I have and follow Him, I feel that He is gentle and the He is preparing me for a time that is to come. In my eyes I want that time now, but for Him that may be in 5, 10, or 25 years from now.

The joy that I have is that despite my failures, despite my inadequacies He has chosen me. He desires me. Not just a part of me because it's convenient or because it is capable or because it always says yes, He wants me because he knows there is more there than I have ever been lead to believe in. Truth be known God believes in me and this for the first time is more than nobody believing in me. The joy is that I am starting to believe in myself thanks to a creator who is greater than all.


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