So… what’s new?

If you scroll through the dates on this blog you can see quickly my writing has been hit and miss for several years. Truthfully hit and miss doesn’t even come close to an accurate description. So before I get going any further I want this to serve as a warning. If you are uncomfortable with vulnerability you might want to check your stocks, check team stats, look at the mega book seller’s site to see if volume 12 in the series is out yet, or better yet click here.

Still with me? Okay good! Several years ago I fancied myself a writer as someone with much to say.  I had big dreams of blogging and having folks in my church say… wow Pastor, that was just what I needed to hear, the Lord used you mightly in my life today. But, that didn’t happen… life did, boy howdy did life happen.

So what has happened?  In the past 4 years, I have moved my family four times, and that’s just state to state within the states/cities there have been some minor moves as well. I’ve worked for 4 churches, one bookstore, one “whole” grocery store, one whale of a coffee chain, a wonderful music school, and an app-driven ride-sharing service – much to the chagrin of my mom. I’ve gained a good 80-90 pounds. I had what I consider to be a nervous breakdown, was diagnosed with depression, cried a lot, laughed a little and rediscovered the beauty of music.

If you, at this point are thinking, I’m going to launch into details about all of that, I am sorry to disappoint, but I’m not. None of that (well… with the exception of music) is important to this posting. What I do want to discuss is the broken condition of man that factored most into that… mine.

For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me. Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Psalm 51:3-6

I am a people pleasing, food confiding, flesh feeding messed up sinner that by God’s grace is simultaneously a saint, not by my merit, but by Christ’s

For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

2 Corinthians 5:21

So that’s great and all Richard, but what have you learned?  I’ve learned that life is not about me. Sometimes what occurs in our lives is because of our own choices (sinful and otherwise) and sometimes things occur in our lives for the sake of others. I know we’ve erroneously told an entire generation (or 2, maybe 3) that the world revolves them, but allow me to burst that one for you, it doesn’t.  I totally believe ultimately God is in control, but sometimes things come into our lives that have little to do with us. Maybe our question shouldn’t be – why me, but why not?

I will expound on one thing from my list.  People pleasing/fear of man (they really are the same thing) is not only dangerous it is deadly, it will capture you and consume you. It could be trying to win your parent’s approval because your sister was always best at… well everything.  It could be needing affirmation from your boss to the point you lose overall effectiveness at work. It could come from not being able to confront someone in love because it will undo your place of comfort, call into question your abilities, or challenge your facade. I would love to tell you a self-help book, a guru or a magic pill took away this tendency in my life, but that’s simply not the case.  No… in fact I know it’s still there, a dragon I never fully slay, he just hobbles off to wage war another day.  Today I know him better than I did 4 years ago.  I know his weaknesses and his strengths more clearly.  I know that ignoring the fact he has not come out of his cave for a while does not mean he’s not there, and I know, my only hope in victory… is not me.

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