Struggles

Posted: March 26, 2009 in About Me, Life Change, My Faith

This is a little weighty. If that’s even a word. I was talking with a guy the other day and he was telling me how he can’t measure up to what Jesus expects of him. So I asked him what he meant, and without going into full detail, it essentially came down to the fact that he has struggles that he has never overcame and is not fit to be in church or could never be used by God in any way. The crazy part of this was that he has bought into that so much that he now just accepts it and moves on, living with a little bitterness in his heart towards some Christians and is content with church being a spectator sport. What I mean by that is this guy goes to church, but he looks at it as what he is supposed to do and not that he can be a vital part in that.

I gotta tell you, this utterly bothers me, to where I am on edge over this. I mean it has weighed heavy on me this week in a crazy way. I’m not sure what exactly God’s plan is for me in ministry but i will say He has revealed MUCH to me over the last year of how off track I was over church, ministry, life, and many other things. This issue of struggle is probably close to the top of that list. Man if anyone knows about struggles, it is me. If Paul was the chief of sinners, I am the chief of struggles. I have been through it, back, and through it again. I know what it’s like to be on a hidden roller coaster ride where the people closest to me think I have it all together, and me knowing I am about to puke my Slurpee all over the place (I don’t know where I get these word pictures from by the way). So when I talked to this guy the other day and he had basically given in to his struggles and just accepted that’s the way it was, you can see how that might bother me. It’s not how it is. It’s not how it’s supposed to be. Yet somehow in our evangelical world we live in, that’s what we have grown up learning and seeing and following. That if we have a problem or are struggling with a hidden sin, then just walk the isle at church, rededicate your life, try as hard as you can to “beat” that sin, then wait a couple days, weeks, months, maybe even years and then “fall” again. But it’s OK, because I just need a good revival so I can rededicate my life again and start the process all over. Repeat for 40 years. Die. That’s how it plays out. That is not even close to what Jesus died for. Yet we have it instilled in our hearts and minds that we have to keep our struggles personal and private. Just between me and God. Our walk with God, though completely personal, was NEVER meant to be private! It was meant to be to be fought, to laugh, cry, sometimes sob, with a community of believers that walks the same earth we do. That knows the same struggles we do, that lives the same life we live. One of my favorite passages is I Corinthians 10:13 that says there is no temptation towards you that is unusual. It’s been used on many people before. The exciting thing about this verse to me if this is true, and it is by the way, then I know I can have victory because others around me are walking in victory!

I unloaded my heart on that guy saying, you can have victory, but it never comes in hiding! It never comes in defeat. It comes in a couple ways. It means striving to be Godly, sometimes falling, but always moving forward. Doing everything we can to walk in obedience, staying accountable in community, not putting on a show for the people around us. Being real. Here’s the important step. Training yourself for Godliness. I Timothy 4:7. Not on your own power, but through the power of the gospel. If you can’t do anything for Salvation, what makes you think your power can help you overcome sin? It can’t. It has to be the power of God. It’s progressive sanctification. You have to learn to crawl before you can walk. I can’t play the piano. I can play Mary Had a Little Lamb that’s the extend of it. If you put Beethoven in front of me, no matter how hard I try, I can’t play it! However, if someone that can play it comes along and walks me through it. Tells me where to put my hands, what note goes where, how to read the music, then over time, I would begin to get it. I could see it. Eventually, I could do it. That’s what our struggles look like. That’s what is meant to happen. Not a life of defeat or hypocrisy, but of moving forward in the power of Christ that He paid for on the cross for our salvation. Don’t cheapen the cross by living in defeat.

I had to get this off my chest.

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Comments
  1. Chuck says:

    I think this is where we come in, D. When people see us loving and receptive to understanding their struggles, maybe they will be more inclined to open up and be real.

    People have to be willing to lean on us, we can’t make it happen. But it does start with us creating an environment that welcomes the “fallen” ones. We have to do it in love, not in judgment.

  2. Heather says:

    Okay, so this is weird. Wednesday night I posted something related to this after planning to post something else all day long.

    I just inexplicably felt like I was supposed to post it, so I did, also btw, crying without reason the whole time. It was strange.

    P.S. I’m not sure about the Beethoven thing. I took piano lessons for 6 years and can’t play “Chopsticks”. 🙂

  3. matt says:

    This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

  4. Benji says:

    I’m a little weighty! I am trying to eat right.

  5. Elyse says:

    I like how you’re passionate about what God has shown you in your life personally (not that you haven’t always been, haha). It is really great how God makes everything “worth it” and usable in our lives. I love the Holy Spirit and how He works through us to show us & others the heart of God. I really enjoyed reading this. 🙂

  6. Brian Howe says:

    Right on…thanks for speaking up.

  7. […] with Christ, sometimes falling, but moving forward. I blogged something similar to this here. Posted by davecross Filed in My Faith Leave a Comment […]

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