Category: Revelation Concentration


Boy oh boy. What a ridiculous time this is. Within weeks I crack around the edges at my job, had a (hilariously) one-sided fall out with a friend, and lost my mind with church leadership. How did I get so broken? What a ridiculous time. What a ridiculous time.

What is so wrong with me that I do these things? I can’t. I can’t. There is so much wrong with the way I’ve handled things lately. And there’s no one I trust enough to process this through with me. Pathetic.

Yet, I can ask for forgiveness, and be forgiven. I can enter His presence, and be welcomed. How pathetic. I am as a deserter but am received as a ruler.

Lord, help me.

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I’m just back on it!

So, yeah.

I fell off the face of the Earth a while ago, and not just on the blogging planet. But in everything. The things I typically find joy in, I wasn’t doing. Now, I wasn’t avoiding them because I have some ‘I should have no joy’ complex. Just the opposite actually. I was trying to be sure that what I enjoyed wasn’t a way for me to attempt to control things or a dependency problem.

Outcome?

It’s not (only) a way for me to be aware of what’s going on, it’s also the way God wired me. I enjoy administrative tasks because it’s one way God designed me to experience joy. I enjoy leading because it’s one of God’s ways for me to experience joy. I enjoy touching others because it’s a way I experience joy. I enjoy being excited and upbeat when greeting or re-greeting others because… you get the picture. Problem solved.

I know it only took you about 30 seconds to read that, but that took me weeks, no, months to identify and then deal with. Months! 5, if you want to know. I had to think back to WHY I ever stopped doing those things. WHY I ever made the decision to tone down, water down, dumb down those parts of myself. It started with some careless comments, but also included explicit examples of what was not needed. Not that I am against advice, or hate correction, because I don’t desire to be stupid or offensive. But I took those opinions and words with NO salt and directly applied them to my every behavior. I began to second guess how I greeted people, whether my touch upset someone, was my voice too loud?

Ever since then, it’s been getting worse. And I don’t mean to sound above anyone or superior because I know that we all hold equal value, but I wasn’t made that way. I wasn’t made to align myself with the middle. I wasn’t created to assimilate my personality with those around me. I wasn’t made to meet the median in the middle and never deviate. And neither were you.

So, I’m over it. I’m over being silenced in mood, behavior and speech. Over it. The lie has been discovered and will be henceforth eliminated. I don’t have to listen to that. And I darn sure don’t have to believe it. Is there wisdom in discretion? Yes. In fact, discretion is the better part of valor. But I will no longer be diminishing my behavior across the board by off-handed words spoken by people I love and appreciate without testing it.

So, here’s to bringing pushed back, name-called, ignored Lexi back to the forefront. May God work through me.

All of the issues I never knew I had.

Ever since Campus Harvest at the end of March, God has really been showing me why I operate certain ways. I really think He was going to resolve one issue and then move on, but I keep not wanting to go into any of them. The result is that now there are about 5 files open, and I’m really nervous about opening any more.  I gotta deal with these now before bigger fish get fried. So, here’s a snippet from the current issues I never knew I had.

Relational: Alright, in trying to be fair, I KNEW I had issues with this. I mean, the first 5 years of my life could be a Lifetime movie. But I thought those issues only pertained to parental bonding. Now, that’s not a trivial thing. Parental bonding problems stir up relationships between (obviously) me and my parents. The connecting tissues also reach to my role as a parent, how I’ll relate to, raise, rebuke my children. It relates to my relationship with my spouse. My relationship with my family members closest to my immediate family. Since none of those things have personally happened to me yet (though I think I still want them) it affects me in the same ways, but from a single perspective. Example: As a nanny, how I relate to the children I oversee. How I relate to my joyfully married bosses. The way I view and process discipline and communication in their home. It seems I am continually battling against these mindsets.

Outside of that, my relationships with anybody, and I mean anybody, that could potentially be a mate are hard to regulate. Only exacerbated by my interpretation of what healthy relationships should look like. My pendulum swings about 30 different ways. Half of them completely synonymous with apathetic. Which makes keeping up with my brothers’ lives ohsomuchfun.

In other news, I am a vain, vain human. I have never been very boastful. A jerk, yeah. But not really boastful. Due to that, I thought I was humble. Terrible assumption. It’s not that I was humble, but that I appreciated being behind the scenes because then, well, without me it really would not have been possible. I’m in no way downplaying my role, or feeling guilty for the particular leanings that God gave me (or that I enjoy and will continue to operate in them), I’m just saying that I’ve enjoyed being behind the scenes because it feeds my ego well above being center stage. Who knew?

Well, I gotta rouse the kiddos from nap. I guess we’ll pick this up later. Pray for me!

It’s me. It’s my selfish, willful disobedience that separates me from God. It’s not his law of justice. It’s not his punishment of sin. It’s not his law of atonement. It’s me.

It’s. Me.

Only my sins killed him. Only my sins called for his sacrifice. Only my pure and utter selfishness caused very God of very God to hold himself on the Cross.

Only me. Only my sins. Only my hands with blood on them. Only my fists striking him. Only my words cursing him. Only me. It’s only me.

It’s. Only. Me.

And I am not worthy.

So, you know how I am helping launch a church to bring the truth, grace and changing power of the Gospel for the glory of God and the good of all people?

Well, today, I got just a bit of that grace extended to me. Was it the grace of God? Yes. Every day I am granted much more than I know what to do with. But I am not always aware, and because of that, rarely intentionally act on what God grants me.

But today, today’s grace came from my employers. We’ll call them the Color Family. C.F. for short.

So, last week I was twenty minutes late to work. *sucks teeth* And I can’t stand being late. If there was anything I could do, I would rearrange all public transportation so that getting everywhere by full and half hour increments was the ultimate goal. Anyway, getting back on track…

I keep a journal between the Color parents and myself in order to update them on things they may need or need to know, and it stays at their home. So, last week, when I was ridiculously late, I wrote how profusely apologetic I was and that it would never happen again.

I know, right. Sounds like a good plan. Well, I was late today. Precisely 8 minutes late. I told them I would be ten minutes late, so that was a bit of leeway, but still. THE NEXT BUSINESS DAY!!!??? Really? I mean. Pa.The.Tic.

So, I had let them know that I would be late and apologized more when I arrived. I told them to penalize me for being late, because really, twice in as many days. I say it again: Pa.The.Tic.

So I’m talking to Mr. Color, and he’s already spoken with Mrs. Color, and they agree that no penalty is necessary. (I couldn’t even feel relief at this so disappointed as I was in myself.) Mr. Color explains that the family works on a system, and that, though the time isn’t necessarily important, the way that it folds into the system is. Which I understand. Kids=routine. Jacked up routine=kids unaware of what is happening next. And that, as some of you know, is not the way to begin tackling a day with 4 children, 3 of them under school age.

Mr. Color finishes his chat with me by saying that I am “released and should not let it weigh on me, that I am forgiven. There’s grace.”

Ah, there is that pesky word. Grace. I mean, it doesn’t even make sense. Grace. If you say it twenty times you forget the definition. (That happens with most words-try it sometime.)

Back to me in my self-pity, punish me, give me what I paid for, let me have it, moment.

I nearly cried. Why? Because I am still learning what grace is. They just, forgave me? No penalty? No dock in payment? No LECTURE? Free. Just like that. Huh. Maybe this grace thing isn’t so abstract after all.

At the end of the day, when Mrs. Color came home, she asked how my talk with Mr. Color had gone. I told her, told her that I nearly cried. Told her that I expect to receive what my actions warrant. Told her that it was hard for me to understand and accept what they were telling me, because it goes against my law, my experience, everything in my past. No. I do not forgive you. You get what you paid for. You get nothing from me. I extend judgement and punishment alone.

Not only when I was dealt with, but in my dealings with others.

If my forgiveness was not swift, the anger in its stead was sure to be. I knew nothing of grace.

So today caught me off guard. How in the world did I expect to bring the grace of the Gospel to a late, disorganized, pained and dark city, without understanding what it meant in time and eternity?

That’s how we represent Christ. As a non-believer, I wouldn’t really know what to do with that situation besides file it under really nice people.

But that’s how we show Him. That’s how we spread His Gospel. That is how we take this city by storm.

Learn it. Practice it. Live it.

Grace.

So, I was just thinking, “Is Twitter going to try to get me to switch to the new Twitter every time I sign in? Should I just make the change and deal with it now?”

I know that the change will be awkward and uncomfortable and unfamiliar. I know that I will have to be lost with the new settings and re-find where everything is…It’s going to a be about the same amount of work as continuing to press no every time I am asked to upgrade and turn off location updates, and navigate the search options.

Well, isn’t that how things work with God. (Disclaimer: God is bigger than Twitter)

Aren’t there moments (weeks) of hesitant and unsure transitions before we get used to what He is doing? Granted, by that time we are moving on again, but you see what I mean. I was practically contemplating something completely unnecessary (sshh! don’t tell Adam I said that!) while continually delaying similar decisions about my relationship with Christ.

I am a hypocrite. Wow. today is a day for making decisions. New Twitter (cringe). New levels (smaller cringe).

I have been busting my butt looking for work in all the right/wrong/long shot places. And where do I find it? In front of my face(s) (you know, to make it rhyme).

What else? I am learning things about myself that make me a little uncomfortable. Okay, a lot of uncomfortable.

There were the things that I mostly already knew. Like, I like having a plan because that means that I am in charge and will know immediately if there is any deviation. Knew that. Didn’t know, that when I don’t have a plan on my person, I notice. Today, I realized that I did not have a list of who was supposed to be doing Kid’s Church. So, if anyone asked me, I would not have been able to answer honestly…Does that rock anybody else’s boat? I was mentally chastising myself for not writing the names in my planner (which, by the way, I did have with me).

I do not trust God. I trust Him for salvation (most of the time). I trust Him to provide (usually). But, that’s pretty much where it stops. I am firm. I know there is a God. I know who He revealed himself to be. I know that He is just and good and righteous. I am firm in these things. But I don’t trust Him to fulfill my emotional needs. I don’t rely on Him when I have a bad day besides knowing that He cares, yet going elsewhere to ease whatever ache I feel. I am assured of His consistency. But I cannot recall times when I have sought, relied on, or experienced emotional support from Him. I mean, that’s hard to do when I don’t go to Him. Peace has come. But not really relief.

My self diagnosis is that I trust His actions, His motives, and His character. But, He doesn’t seem emotional to me. I know He wept. I know His heart was grieved. I know He turned His face away in anger. But his emotions don’t make sense to me. He always knows how things will end, always and forever. So I have a hard time trusting in that. Like Donny said, “If it’s not a logical pain to me, then I won’t cry.” If He knows all, then how is any pain not logical, not simple, not purposeful. How is it worth crying over?

All that to say, I need to understand that. Because how can I trust His Creation’s emotions, if I don’t trust His? How can I rely on a human if I can’t rely on the One who made him or her? How could I ever relate? How could I ever sympathize? How could I ever marry?

Is it even okay for God to be sad? Is it even plausible?

Whatever you’re doing inside of me
It feels like chaos somehow there’s peace
It’s hard to surrender to what I can’t see
but I’m giving in to something heavenly
Whatever you’re doing inside of me
It feels like chaos but I believe
You’re up to something bigger than me
Larger than life something heavenly

This song is my anthem right now. Everything going on right now, especially emotionally, feels like absolute chaos. I am definitely not in control, and though I hate it, God loves it. I’m finally learning what it feels like to give over control to the One who knows what’s best for me. It feels like falling. It feels like losing touch. It feels like chaos. And it’s exhilarating. It’s breath-taking. It’s marvelous. And now that I’ve tasted it, I can’t get enough. I can’t let go now. I can’t turn around. I can’t leave the One who is enamored with me. The One who I am betrothed to. The One who has taken my life into His hands. His hands that are firm. His hands that are sure. His hands that will never let me go. And I can’t turn around. And I can’t give up. And I can’t turn my back. This is it. This is what I live for. This is what I desire. This, this feeling. This reality. This loss of control. This, chaos. This chaos that has consumed me. This consuming fire. This refiner’s fire. It is what I longed for. And now that I am in it, I’m not getting out. I’m not giving up. I’m not going to run. So, whatever you’re doing, inside of me. It feels like chaos, but it, too, makes me free.

Christ the King.

Riddle me this…

As Wink puts it, “We are freed from bibliolatry, the worship of the bible. It is restored to its proper place as witness to the Word of God. And that word is a Person, not a book.”

-Taken from a friend’s paper.

Walter Wink said this. Any thoughts on it?

Read:

“How can we convince them to take the medicine if we can’t convince them they are sick? Sin destroys…that is part of our message.”

I saw this quote in response to another blog.

From any corner, view and issue you want to take it from, tell me your thoughts on this quote.

I’ll blog about it in a few days myself.