My New Chalk Line

I have a confession to make, but first you need to hear the story that leads up to the confession.

This last summer on the Fixin’ Up The Thumb Servant Event I was working with a crew on John & Janice’s home. During the project I kept bugging Dalton to use his chalk line. It wasn’t because I am without a chalk line, I think I own about four of them. And it also wasn’t because I didn’t have one with me on the Servant Event. It was just that Dalton’s chalk line was so nice. He owned a brand new Irwin chalk line. Amazon says that this specific chalk line has:

  • Easy Fill & Lock Top – Large, 1/4-turn locking top for quick chalk fill and easy access to reel internals – Easy fill & lock top
  • 100′ Hi-Tensile Line – Stronger for fewer breaks and for use on rough, abrasive surfaces – 2.5X stronger than traditional chalk reels
  • 3:1 Gear Ratio Rewinds line 3X faster than traditional chalk reels
  • Robust Steel Handle and Large Ergonomic Clutch For increased durability, strength, and torque
  • Wide-prong Hook For secure anchoring

Screen Shot 2018-04-20 at 9.33.47 AM

This is not an ad for Irwin, but the thing worked (as my dad would say), “slicker than snot.” Some have accused me of coveting, but I’ll have to leave that for another blog post.

About a month after the Servant Event was over, Eric Bitzer came into my office and said, “Here, I got something for you.” I opened up a package to find a brand new Irwin chalk line just like Daltons! I was thrilled!

FullSizeRender 31

Now fast-forward again. After a time I was looking in my garage for that chalk line and couldn’t find it. I wracked my brain over where I had put that chalk line. Eric had given it to me in my office so I looked everywhere in my office. I checked where I put my chalk lines, matter of fact I even looked all over the floor under where I store my chalk lines in case it fell down behind something. Months went by and I could not find that chalk line anywhere. As we started to get closer and closer to this summer’s Servant Event I was thinking to myself that I was going to have to go out and buy a brand new Irwin chalk line because there was no way that I could tell Eric that I had lost the one that he gave me, and he would for sure wonder why I didn’t use that chalk line during the Servant Event.

Finally I mentioned my predicament to my son Nathan. He said, “yeah, you gave me that chalk line when you were giving me tools.” To which I replied, “you can have a chalk line, but I need that one back!” I was so relieved because the lost had been found.

It reminds me of the “lost” chapter of the Bible, Luke 15. Not “lost” because we lost it, but because Jesus tells three parables about things being lost.

Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”

So he told them this parable: “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.

The Parable of the Lost Coin

“Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

The Parable of the Prodigal Son

And he said, “There was a man who had two sons. And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.’ And he divided his property between them. Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took a journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in reckless living. And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything.

“But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.

“Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’ And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. It was fitting to celebrate and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.’” (Luke 15 ESV)

It’s wonderful to find something that has been lost. Believe me, I’m just tickled every time I use that chalk line (especially because there is such a story behind it now). However, there is way more weight to a lost person being found! Indeed, as Jesus puts it, “there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” That’s better than any chalk line.

Advertisements
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

What You’re Signing Up For

Sunday morning I was just wrapping up Bible class when one of the participants came forward and made what I thought was a very insightful comment. She had witnessed a baptism recently and commented on the part where the parents and sponsors of the child promised to renounce the devil, all his works, and all his ways. We had just finished talking about a chapter entitled “We Get Comfortable In Secret Vices” and indeed we both saw how the devil works through these secret vices.

After that conversation I went straight into worship where we began with a baptism. As they got to the part that I mentioned above, I wondered if these happy people, all dressed up in their Sunday best, really knew what they were signing up for. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely believe we should baptize. Matter of fact, all three of my children were baptized the day that they were born. Not because they had some health issue, but just because Cathy and I believe that strongly in baptism.

Let’s be clear, however, when someone is baptized into the faith they all of a sudden get a target put on their back. The devil is not happy about just what happened and seeks to destroy this saving faith. “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 ESV)

4a3f5da98196d2d8d7c3d759fec1d63f

So what does it mean to renounce the devil and all his works and all his ways? Peter goes on to say that we should “resist him.” James also says that we should “resist the devil, and he will flee from you,” but adds that we should submit to God (James 4:7) Paul says in Ephesians that we should “not let the sun go down while you are still angry and do not give the devil a foothold.” (4:26-27 NIV) Paul also says that we should “put on the full armor of God,” and three times says that we are to “stand.” (Ephesians 6:11-17) He also adds at the end of that passage that we should be “praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.” (6:18) When Jesus wrestled with the devil in his temptations Jesus used the scriptures to continually push the devil back in his place. (Matthew 4:1-11)

The devil is a wily one and any attempt to paint him as inept or stupid would be foolish. The Bible describes him as “the deceiver” (Revelation 12:9), “the tempter” (Matthew 4:3), “the father of lies” (John 8:44), our “adversary” (1 Peter 5:8), and says that he even disguises himself as “an angel of light.” (2 Corinthians 11:14)

I think of his actions as a game of Hunker Hawser. If you’ve never played, it goes like this:

Players hunker down on their platforms, which are set about six feet apart, each holding one end of a rope about one inch in diameter and at least fifteen feet long. The excess rope lies coiled between them-but not for long.

At the starting signal, the players begin reeling in. The object is to unbalance your opponent by tightening or slackening the rope. Sound simple? “Oh I’ll just give a good pull and…” Suddenly your opponent relaxes her hold, and over you go in a spectacular backward somersault-defeated by your own energy. In fact, the more aggressive you become, the more vulnerable you are. (The New Games Book, 1976, pg. 31)

Screen Shot 2018-04-13 at 9.38.21 AM

It reminds me of the Luther quote about drunken peasants. “The world is like a drunken peasant. If you lift him into the saddle on one side, he will fall off again on the other side. One can’t help him, no matter how one tries. He wants to be the devil’s. (Table Talks 630, 1533. Luther’s Works 54:111)

The fun thing about playing Hunker Hawser is that even if you fall off your stump, you get right back up and play again. Yes, there are many times that we have fallen for the devil’s lies and temptations, but the good thing is that it is not a “one and done” scenario. Every time we fall we have a Savior that picks us up, washes us clean, and then we resume renouncing the devil and all of his works and ways. That’s what we’ve signed up for!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Whatchu Lookin At?

Look at the image below. Take some time and focus. What do you see?

Screen Shot 2018-04-03 at 11.06.07 AM

You probably just said “a black dot.” It’s true that there is a black dot in that image, but really the black dot is only a very small portion of what is in that image. No, I didn’t hide any secret text in the vast white area, and there’s not a drawing inside of the black dot. But why is it that we focus so much on the black dot and miss the 99% of the image, which is the white background?

Something very similar to this exercise happened with our mission trip to the Appalachian Mountains this past week. Yes, we had some challenges. Namely, we had a kid break his arm, we had some youth get sick with the flu and we had a van that needed to have an exhaust pipe fixed. I don’t want to downplay that those were real things that happened on our trip, or that they were bad. But let me lay out what else happened on our trip. We were the first mission group that got to spend the night in the Trammel Community Center. We saw the Ark Encounter in Kentucky. We exposed ten new youth to the Appalachian culture-including music, the people and stories. We finished off two bathrooms at the Trammel Community Center, plus painted the whole outside and totally rebuilt a bunkroom. After our work the Trammel Community Center is even more functional for groups to stay in, the local church to use for Bible studies, the local anti-drug meetings, and helping the community’s poor. Besides reconnecting with long time friends we even did a side job of gutting and rebuilding a kitchen/dining room floor at one home in Trammel. As you read the two lists, similar to the image above, which one is going to hold your attention?

img_0354

Yet we do the same thing all of the time in our own lives. We choose to focus on the bad thing that is going on instead of looking at the huge amount of blessings we have in our life. They say that the squeaking wheel gets the grease, well we could also say that the problems of life tend to get all of the attention. But are we missing the 99% white background?

I love Hebrews 12:1-3:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (NIV)

Embedded with hindrances, entanglements, a grueling race, opposition from sinners, weariness, and losing heart we have the encouragement to “fix our eyes on Jesus.” Even Jesus, who had to suffer the cross and the shame that came with it, focused on the “joy set before him.”

Matthew Henry comments about this passage:

“By steadfastly looking to Jesus, their thoughts would strengthen holy affections, and keep under their carnal desires. Let us then frequently consider him. What are our little trials to his agonies, or even to our deserts? What are they to the sufferings of many others?”

To which I answer, “nothing but a little black dot on a gloriously huge white background.”

6272531e81d4d0033e5406721e7d8516

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Number Fifty

Everyday we are presented with forks in the road. Every fork in the road changes who we are in the future, and sometimes a very insignificant looking fork in the road results in a huge change in our lives.

So it was for me back in 1989 when I sat in a DCE meeting in Northern Illinois (cue dream sequence harp music) and listened to a presentation from a DCE about her trip to an Indian tribe in Canada. She showed us some pictures from her trip and encouraged us to go on a Servant Event. I don’t remember going home that day on fire, but the fork had been taken, my new journey had begun. Now many years later I’ve been on forty-nine Servant Events and tomorrow morning I leave for number fifty!

There are so many memories. Wonderful people that I’ve worked alongside of, both young and old. Very interesting people that I’ve worked for; widows, those with physical challenges, those in very dire financial situations, some with wonderful senses of humor, and some that blew me away with their own generosity. I’ve laughed so hard that I’ve cried at times and other times I’ve cried because I’ve been so moved in my spirit. Some groups have clicked so well that I literally ache inside when I have to say goodbye to them. I’ve seen youth grow up into amazing adults and parents. I’ve seen a Servant Event guide youth in their choice of a profession. I’ve seen groups accomplish work tasks that would leave any contractor in awe. I’ve set on the beach, watching the sunset over Lake Huron, as youth emotionally shared how God was working in their life. I’ve set on the roof of a church in Mexico on New Year’s Eve and watched fireworks. I’ve seen three different churches built and have been there to watch people worship in their new sanctuary for the first time. One time I was given the “I’ve got a story for that” Adult Award-I guess you can see why.

Scan

As our team was commissioned on Wednesday night, pastor read these Bible verses:

“If one of you wants to be great, he must be a servant of the rest, and if one wants to be first, he must be the slave of all.” (Matthew 20:26-27)

“Help carry one another’s burdens and in this way you will obey the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2)

“Love must be completely sincere. Hate what is evil; hold on to what is good. Love one another warmly as Christian brothers, and be eager to show respect for one another. Work hard and do not be lazy. Serve the Lord with a heart full of devotion.” (Romans 12:9-11)

“As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” (John 20:21)

I’ve literally spent more than one full year of my life on Servant Events and mission trips. Now, we all will “spend” our time on this planet one way or the other. We just don’t know how much time we have, but there’s no way of getting out of this life with any time left. As I look back on my forty-nine trips, I’m pleased because I think it’s been a good use of time. Not that I’m looking to hang it up any time soon! Ultimately at the end of it all, I want to hear “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

So Much Easier

Going on a mission trip is not easy. The food is not our normal fair and sometimes it doesn’t agree with our digestive tracks. Sometimes the weather is very hot, sometimes very cold. We sleep on strange beds, sometimes on the hard ground. We work hard. And maybe the worst part is travelling in cramped, hot, uncomfortable vehicles for hours.

IMG_1362

(That’s my seat there, and Orlean still had to get in!)

No, mission trips are not easy and, even knowing full well what I am getting myself into, sometimes it even gets the best of me. For example, on this most recent trip we were in the back of Pastor Touloute’s Land Cruiser and I was tired, cramped, and needed some serious alone time (which is often non-existent on these trips). Being a recovering complainaholic I knew that rather than having it come out of my mouth I needed to find a way to cope. Having very few options of what I could do, I pulled out my headphones and decided to listen to some music. The very first song that I listened to (not by chance) was “Complain” by Kings X. I hope you appreciate the weight of these lyrics.

Complain by Kings X 

Ozone disappearing in the sky
Bud man asking us why ask why
If I could find my magazine this bug would die
I complain

China boy standing up to a tank
Southern boy living in the house of yanks
If I can’t seem to get my motorbike to crank
I complain

Chorus: Complain so much easier, Complain so much easier, Complain so           much easier, so much easier

Small kid begging for a crumb of bread
Next kid bloated lying nearly dead
I wonder what to take for my aching head
I complain

Lots of people crying for a little rain
Whole nation learning how to live with pain
I don’t know how I’m gonna clean this little stain
I complain (Chorus)

Black man singing Mississippi blues
Africa starves a little baby drools
I’m trying to figure out all the basketball rules
I complain

Mr. Rush Limbaugh giving me the facts
Treetops falling and the newsman yaks
I’m thinking about Carter
And how I’m gonna be taxed, hey (Chorus 2x)

I guess I’m not the only one! According to Tim Ferris, it’s estimated that 30-40% of ALL conversations are complaining. I’m not sure that that estimate isn’t too low! If you really stop and listen to people, you’ll notice that a lot of what people say is just complaining and is not solution based.

This past Sunday our Old Testament reading was Numbers 21:4-9.

From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom. And the people became impatient on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this worthless food.” Then the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. And the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole, and everyone who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a pole. And if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live. (ESV)

There are all kinds of examples of the children of Israel complaining against Moses and God himself. Often the Bible uses the word “grumbling.” In the Hebrew the word literally means “to be obstinate (especially in words, to complain).” In this passage God got so angry with the people that he sent “fiery serpents” to bite them and kill them- all because of their complaining. If God were to do the same to us, how many of us would survive? We’re just as guilty as they were!

But God provided a solution as well. Moses lifted up a bronze serpent on a staff so that those that would choose to could look at the serpent and live. It may seem like an odd solution, but in it I see a foreshadowing to Christ. God’s solution was not for them to work on their complaining-not that efforts to curb our wayward tongues may not be in order-instead they needed to look at something outside of themselves for their help.

Like I said, I’m a recovering complainaholic, which means that I often resonate with Paul’s words in Romans 7:15-25a (which I refer to as the “to do doot” section)

For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.

So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (ESV)

Just like the Israelites needing to look at the bronze serpent to live, we must look to Jesus and the cross every time we find ourselves grumbling or complaining. There we find life and sweet forgiveness.

To quote my dear departed friend Al Kline, “it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.” Think about that the next time you’re tempted to complain.

IMG_2925

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fear No Wasp

Every summer the wasps take up residence in my barns. There is one barn in particular where they set up their nests right by the door. I usually live by the philosophy, “if you don’t bother them they won’t bother you,” which works pretty well for me.

One time when the kids were much smaller I needed to get something out of the barn and Ben was with me. As we walked into the barn the wasps were flying all around us and Ben was kind of freaking out. I just went about my business getting whatever it was that I needed to get. That’s when Ben said, “mom’s right, you’re not afraid of anything.” Well, to a young boy that probably seemed correct, but inside I knew that the things that cause me fear were deeper than a bunch of wasps.

yellow-jacket-nest-ecotech-pest-control

It seems that there is a lot of fear in the world today. Just this week there was a threatened school shooting in Caro, twice! Now four youth are in detention and potentially facing up to twenty years in prison. And we all know about the school shootings that have taken place. It seems that our children can’t even feel secure when they go to school. And school shootings are just one example of things that cause people fear.

So what are you afraid of? A marriage that is falling apart? Kids that are going down the wrong path? A job that isn’t secure? Health concerns? What are you afraid of?

1 John 4:18 says that “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.” Actually the Bible has a lot to say about fear. Check out this chart that I made:

Fear Story Verse God’s Solution Response
Enemy Red Sea Exodus 14:26-28 Deliverance Praise/Song
Famine Zarephath’s Widow 1 Kings 17:7-16 Provision Obedience
Death Elijah Flees 1 Kings 19:1-9 Angels Prayer/Rest
Dangers Psalm 91 Psalm 91:5-7 Refuge/Angels Dwell
Persecution Jesus’ Teaching Luke 12:4-12 Remembrance Fear God/Acknowledge Jesus
Popularity Proverb Proverbs 29:25 Safety Trust
God Adam & Eve Genesis 3:8-10 Savior Enjoy life which God gave
All Creation Paul’s Epistle Romans 8:35-39 Love Faith

Nowhere in all of the Bible do I find something that says, “oh yeah, that one over there, you should fear that.” Even the worst enemies, and things that could cause the greatest fear are under God’s control. So instead of fear, we are better off doing what is in the “Response” column. Things like resting, praying, and simply dwelling.

Another response that you could do when you’re afraid is read your Bible. To that end, I leave you with Psalm 27.

The Lord Is My Light and My Salvation

Of David.

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?

The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall.

Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident.

One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.

For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock.

And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me, and I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and make melody to the Lord.

Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud; be gracious to me and answer me!

You have said, “Seek my face.”

My heart says to you, “Your face, Lord, do I seek.” Hide not your face from me.

Turn not your servant away in anger, O you who have been my help.

Cast me not off; forsake me not, O God of my salvation!

For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in.

Teach me your way, O Lord, and lead me on a level path because of my enemies.

Give me not up to the will of my adversaries; for false witnesses have risen against me, and they breathe out violence.

I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!

Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

More Than Just Fine

How are you this morning (or whenever you happen to be reading this blog)? Would you just automatically answer “good,” or “fine?”

This morning I was happy to see the fresh snow (I truly do enjoy looking at snow-especially fresh snow). However, I wasn’t happy that my alarm was going off, telling me that I needed to get up if I wanted to get my intended swim in this morning. You see, I slept well the first half of the night, but then was restless the second half and even ended up on the couch so I didn’t wake up Cathy. After getting to the pool I had hopes of doing an easy shorter swim. Let me tell you, it was a struggle-bus the whole way. I couldn’t seem to relax and find “flow.” I’m also impatient with a lingering pain in my right shoulder. Despite that I’m glad that I got my workout in for the day. And finally on my mind and in my prayers are my kids. As their father I’m concerned and praying for their life paths as they journey into adulthood.

Why do I share this in-depth description of what is going on with me, and what I’m feeling this morning? I share it for two reasons, which I’ll now explain.

Number one, I’ve been leading a Sunday morning Bible class on a book called Twelve Ways That Your Phone Is Changing You by Tony Reinke. I would highly recommend it, and I must say I have really enjoyed the discussion we’ve been having. With my focus and thoughts on this topic it has led me to listen to podcasts and read books that are on related topics. The book that I just started reading is called The Happiness Effect-How Social Media is Driving A Generation to Appear Perfect at Any Cost by Donna Freitas. I’m not very far into the book but I’m already saddened by just how powerful of an effect social media is having on us (and youth especially) to put forth a polished, smiley face, façade. To quote Emma from the book:

“People do [social media] for the ‘likes.’ People take pictures, experience things, go places for the reaction that they’re going to get on social media.” “Obviously, I don’t go around saying, ‘I think all of you are fake and snobbish and unintelligent’ and things like that. That is my authentic opinion, but I would be a leper if I shared that opinion.” “I put things online that people are going to respond well to.” “People used to do things and then post them, and the approval you gained from whatever you were putting out there was a byproduct of the actual activity.” “Now the anticipated approval is what’s driving the behavior or the activity, so there’s just sort of been this reversal.”

all-for-your-chi._12pcs-set-of-smiley-face-squeeze-ball-for-your-chi

I think that’s a sad commentary on social media, but I also think it is very accurate.

The second reason that I share an honest look at myself this morning is because I don’t think God is afraid of our raw, pure emotions. To prove this point let’s look at some of David’s emotions that he recorded in the Psalms.

Anguish ~ Psalm 22

Comforted ~ Psalm 23

Confused ~ Psalm 35

Disheartenment ~ Psalm 12

Distraught ~ Psalm 13

Fear ~ Psalm 3

Frustrated ~ Psalm 14

Gladness (out of grief) ~ Psalm 30

Guilt ~ Psalm 51

Joyful ~ Psalm 24

Lament ~ Psalm 25

Pleading ~ Psalm 17

Pleading ~ Psalm 5

Satisfied ~ Psalm 16

Secure ~ Psalm 18

Thankfulness ~ Psalm 9

Trust ~ Psalm 31

Vindictiveness ~ Psalm 11

Worshipful ~ Psalm 8

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 9.33.39 AM

The list could go on and on, and often David expressed far more than one emotion in each one of these songs that he sang to God. That’s the point, we’re not limited to just “happy,” “good,” or “fine.” We can experience any of the smorgasbord of emotions. It’s not as if God doesn’t already know what we’re feeling anyway.

Maybe if we were honest with God, ourselves, and others as well, we all might just be a little bit healthier. Right now I’m feeling hopeful that we will.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment