Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
It’s the worst chore ever. When I was single and living in an apartment, I thought it was dusting, but once I got married and moved to a house in the suburbs, where you have to have things like “landscaping” (but no budget for a full-time gardener – drat!), I have discovered the single worst chore in the world is weeding. I truly, truly hate it. I want to move into the city, where land is covered in concrete and glass just so I never have to pull or spray another weed again. I am not kidding.
I think I loathe it because it takes so much time and work. Now, before all the gardeners jump on me, I am fully aware that if I would just expend a little bit of effort every week, instead of saving it all up and weeding once a… quarter?... I could save myself tons of grief.
Funny how weeds are almost exactly like sin, hey?
If I would just recognize sin in my life right away, when it’s small and easy to uproot and remove, how much agony would I save myself? Instead, noooooo, I let the sin get all big and dug in and rooted and then it’s work to remove it from my life. Sometimes there is stuff that sprouts up that I don’t even recognize as a weed, er, sin. But if it chokes life out of my spiritual garden it’s a sin that needs to be removed in order for God to flourish.Maybe I need to start on a weekly weeding program that I also use as a time to inspect my spiritual garden. Anyone else do this? (I promise, you don’t have to continue the garden metaphor) What do you do to stay on top of the sin in your life? Do you have a regular time of confession and prayer with God? Or is it more of a when-you-notice-it sort of thing?
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
What do I need to leave behind so that I can go and fulfill God’s call on my life (ala Peter, Andrew and Elisha)? This was a question at the end of one of the day’s of a thirty day Bible study I am doing. And what a great question. But since I can’t even seem to figure out God’s call on my life, I have no idea what I need to abandon to fulfill it.
Does it ever seem like everyone has a purpose but you? I return again and again to Jeremiah 1:5. And I Peter 4:10. I’ve read 48 Days to the Work You Love and The Purpose Driven Life. And I emerge from them feeling… directionless and purposeless. Not really what the authors were going for, I don’t think.
Why is it so easy for me to believe that God has a purpose for every life but mine? I truly believe in those passages of Scripture – for everyone except me that is. I get so stuck when the discussion turns to purpose and talents. Where I am normally chatty, suddenly my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. Whether it’s fear, or self-doubt or having beat myself up for so long for being prideful that I now have nothing to be proud of, I don’t know.
All I know is that while I read God’s Word about using my gifts for Him, I acknowledge them with my head but I don’t believe them in my heart. Or, even more accurately, I believe the words for everyone except me. I know the danger of such sad, discouraging, negative self-talk. I try to obey II Corinthians 10:5b and “take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ.” But I’d still really like to know what I am good at.
I always feel like I look around and see someone else already doing things I could potentially be interested in, and doing it so much better than I could, that I feel like I have nothing further to contribute. So is that fear, self-doubt or both? And aside from taking a bunch of multiple-choice quizzes, how do I learn what talents I have? And what God wants from me? Does anyone else ever struggle with this??