Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Would Jesus have Read Twilight?

Don't you love the title? Nice and provocative; the type of discussion that could end friendships, place people in "camps" or "sides;" make all of us judge each other. I can only sort of answer the question here. I tend to think that most 30 something males don't read Twilight. Just a guess. But what this question means to me is, "Is it right for a Christian to read Twilight?" and that question I will not answer simply because it divides, judges, and is incredibly small. I may have an opinion;  in fact I do; actually I have an opinion on most everything. But my opinion is not important. As far as I know there is no hidden verse in the Bible that elevates my opinion to any great importance. What is important to me is how believers, myself included, make decisions. The Word of God says that "whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." (1 Cor. 10:31) I think that most all of our decisions matter. My mind has been focused on a question this week that is related to this. Can God tell me no? I mean I know He can, but would I hear Him if He did? Do I think my own opinion is of such great worth that I trust it? Do I think that because I read my Bible daily that I can trust what I think? Sometimes I trivialize praying about things. I believe too often that if what I am about to do is good or God honoring I can skip the asking part. I can't. Sometimes a good thing isn't the best thing to do right now or maybe it is not mine to do right now. And then there are the other decisions we make, what to read, watch, see, do; those "Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire; he breaks out against all sound judgment." (Prov. 18:1).  When we isolate ourselves from seeking what God thinks about our actions we do not have sound judgment. It may not seem to make a big difference in our lives but any decision that is not God honoring takes us a little further away from God. This post is meant to be about decision making, not about Twilight or any other book or movie out there. I used the analogy because I was recently asked the question and have been pondering the topic ever since. Do you allow God into all of your decision making or just the Spiritual ones or the ones you don't care so much about? Have you forgotten lately to ask God about what He thinks you should be doing? Can God tell you no? Would you actually hear Him? Those are the questions I have been asking myself lately and the answers are already changing what I am asking Him and I am taking a little more space to hear God before I act. I am glad I was asked the question. Even if I won't answer it.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Another Life Challenge

  “‘After this I will return and rebuild David’s fallen tent. Its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it,
that the rest of mankind may seek the Lord, even all the Gentiles who bear my name, says the Lord, who does these things-things known from long ago." Acts 15:16

While reading this verse this morning I thought of the time of life I have been going through. Some of you may know and some of you may not but I am going to be a Grandma. It is not coming the way I would have chosen and I am being challenged once again in how I walk this walk with Christ that I am on. I love my daughter deeply and my heart hurts for her. But I am finding that my heart hurts for me and I am learning just how full of pride I am and I hate it. You start out this walk and you want everything to go perfectly. You think that you will make all these good choices and that you will love your children and be there for them and God will honor it and it will all go well.

Of course, that is only what you think will happen. The truth is that you will love them so much it hurts but you also will make so many mistakes that you will wonder how God can honor your efforts. They will push your buttons and you will get angry with them and say the wrong things and then wonder how you will make it. But you still think that they will watch you love and serve God. You think that because you gave them boundaries and you gave them fun that it will be enough. You think that because they asked Jesus into their hearts at camp or church when they are young that it is enough. You think that because you prayed for them and with them and took them to church every time the door was open it will keep them from wandering and it will be enough.  But it isn't always. You can't make your children go the way you want them to and make the decisions you want them to and the time comes far too soon when you cannot even protect and discipline them.

My Melody has gone through a lot in her few years and she bears a few of lifes scars. She came to a point where she told me she wasn't sure where she was with God and it is in that uncertain place that she got into trouble. It is hard to watch your child struggle and I have prayed and fasted much this past year for my girl. Getting pregnant was and is a hard thing to walk through, for her and for our family. We are learning who we are as believers. I have to be honest. This, combined with some other stuff has made me question so much of my life. I have felt like a failure and also like I lost the favor of God. I have struggled with pride, always wanting my life to reflect my committment to God I have been sure that I have let God down and like I have let all of those around me down. Now, I know all of the right answers to that way of thinking. I have spoken them. But it is easier to speak truth than to walk through that truth.

We are walking through this together, as a family, as we should. We are learning our way through something most of us never thought would happen to us. I am ashamed at all of the things that I foolishly thought would only happen to other people. Pride again. Melody is doing better with God but she and I covet your prayers. It is not an easy road. I am feeling exhausted and sad instead of excitement and I know that Melody is uncertain and afraid of the road that lies ahead. I asked Melody if I could write this and she graciously allowed it. For whatever reason writing helps me make sense of my life and I could use some sense at this moment. Please pray for us when you think about us. Pray that God will give me wisdom as I speak to my daughter and walk through this. Pray that God will reveal Himself to Melody in a way that makes sense to her so that she will lean upon Him. Pray that  He will give us rest and peace and joy in the midst of this challenge. Pray that God will use this for His glory. Pray that God will bring life out of what the enemy thinks of as ruin. I am so thankful to serve the God that rebuilds that which is torn and repairs that which is broken.