Tuesday, October 30


something i would almost closed-mindedley argue about is the fact that some things thats parts of "the church" try to justify as important and necessary, usually aren't. and are usually totally out of focus.
usually, or always, these things will stunt your growth.

the other day i was talking to one of my great friends. he told me about his struggle with his home church. we began talking about his church's traditions, specifically the "altar call". (i'm very "quotation friendly", aren't i?) how this tradition, in his particular situation, has really taken a negative toll on his walk. it was all about shame. the scenario went like this: the announced altar call music played. a person would begin to cry, feeling convicted for something. the power of the hymn would translate as jesus tugging on his heart and would require a walk up the aisle to the almighty block of wood (i added that as a joke). this struck a silent chaos in the congregation.
"oh...poor lost boy. wonder what he did."
then after service, he'd be flooded with the seemingly fake sympathy smiles. (mmm i know those).
so hammered into his head was that shame was at the root of being a jesus-follower. or more appropriately, a church-goer.

the crazy thing is that he, at my age, is already beginning to realize who jesus really is DESPITE his upbringing.
he was miraculously able to recognize that he wasn't growing anymore even though everything that jesus wasn't really about was being thrown in his face.

so he left.
so, if one is in a situation where they're no longer growing, do they leave?
is it a selfish form of giving up, or it a step in searching to find a way for them to grow to be more like jesus?
situational, i guess.

i guess where i'm getting is that at river valley, i am growing. slowly and in a rocky, extremely messy fashion.
but i feel like this particular path i'm on is drenched with the blessing of not being distracted as often as the devil would like me to.
sometimes, yes. but that's where the rockiness comes in.
for example, because of different circumstances, i have had to leave the service and grab the cd on the way out instead.
i listen to it in my car, and i love that. i feel like steve is talking to ME, it makes me apply the teachings to my life more intimately.
and sometimes i think people think i come to worship and bail for the important part.
sitting right here typing it makes me feel ridiculous and petty, but unfortunately that's the way the enemy works.
who cares. hardly anyone.
but the sad thing is, most of the time, probably someone.
we lose focus.
we use the energy we're given on the wrong things.

i think God has given me a glimpse of a gift of perspective. sometimes i handle the gift in the wrong way and come across apathetic. like i don't care about silly of-the-world things.

but i am clay. clay that is dripping with watery slip begging to be molded and shaped into a fraction of who my Potter wants me to be.
i am growing. i'm where i'm supposed to be.
even if that means here, in my dramatic, stale-smoke smelling home, in this small town i've always been, at shawnee state university. with my few, FEW friends. in my incredibly poorly heated bedroom,
i am warmed with the truth that i am where i'm supposed to be. for now.

yep, that's where i was going with it.


lauren. said...

i just did a post about my people.
be proud =)

julie p said...

perspective...that's what we all need to grow more than anything else. I desire "discernment;" if we could all be more discerning, we might not be in the messes we get ourselves into sometimes.