To live out the faith in action means to painfully come to the conclusion that faith can only be carried forward through the amount of Christ we allow into our lives, Realizing the dire necessity of faith demands that often times through desperation we grieve at the ungodliness still living in our hearts, it means to carry on in the face of relentless agitation, discouragement and immense frustration… Becoming Christ like sometimes means that you realize how Un-Christ-like human nature truly is, you see it working against every creation of God in your flesh, your mind and yourself…, you find it contending ferociously against wanting the life of God in the human realm…, you find it creating the many rifts, confusions and anguish in faith building… Faith is the end of us and the beginning of God. I’ve realized that becoming like Christ is more like climbing up a steep mountain than lying by a stream and slumbering in peace, we keep pushing forward no matter how we feel.
It is faith that helps one see past the mess of one’s life and into the murky future of salvation, our lives always made to feel like a tremendous underperformer in its achievements of the things of God. I find that faith becomes tremendously hard when I take control of how things are supposed to be going.., supposing I walk up to a medical shop and the service provider has a nasty attitude, or a limited and haughty impersonal sense which would no doubt get on my nerves since I can absolutely absorb their entire emotional chemistry and feel it suppressing my own Christ offered Joy… Worse yet, I find it painful and hurting to my own inner person to the point where I struggle to comprehend the mean
spirited nature of that person, and furthermore I am engulfed in the bitter reactions of my own personality, I despise how easily I am available to such deep emotional harm in the hands of people whose heartlessness has become such second nature that they don’t care about other people and their feelings, or realize the enormous amount of damage that they bring to another person’s heart. I am then commanded to offer forgiveness to the individual who has unwittingly unlocked and wounded me, I am commanded by God to love that person and chief of all, I am commanded by God to not have a pattern of behavior that calls
for me to avoid that person at all costs or vent it all out by means of rumors or gossips. I struggle with God about almost all of His rules, I deeply appreciate their profound wisdom and beauty, I enjoy performing the easier ones…, but it’s the hard ones that I struggle with.., it’s the ones that too often than not unveil and unmask my own insecurities, inferiority and lack of humility that I get offended by…, I get offended by how the Bible can point out my hypocrisy at all times and I can do nothing about it, I have to sit there and deal with the offense with my limited understanding of forgiveness and repentance…, and chief of all, I have to truly wonder at the unrealistic and superhuman demands that Faith constantly
asks of us…, You can say that I have trouble following Christ, and the moment I doubt one segment of Him.., the entire Faith structure collapses.., the moment I get angry at God.., I withdraw from Him.., the moment I backslide, fall into lustful temptations, become bitter, resentful, hostile and remorseless about my mistakes.., I am separated from God…, and very often I feel as though God does not care enough about talking to me.., I don’t hear Him asking me to come back.., all I hear are the Bible verses that I get upset about.., ” Depart from me you evildoers..’ I hear that verse quite often in my mind, the response to that verse is most often.., I would gladly choose Hell over a God who does not understand the depths of my pain, my trials, my tribulations and my desperation in satisfying Him…, If I am cast
into a burning lake of eternal fire and torment over a Sin un-confessed, or committed against a Holy God…, How can I have peace in my walk of faith..? How..? How am I supposed to satisfy a God that I can never ever fully satisfy..?
Atleast in my estimation ie.
I realize that I don’t have the answers, but I have also learned that the very God that I feel like running away from is the only person in this entire Universe who loves me more than I deserve to be loved.., those are pretty strong reasons to blindly love somebody and do what they say and want.
But then again, I am not angry at God.. He has never done anything wrong in regard to me.., He is hard to satisfy, but those are complications that arose from Man’s fall in the garden and indwelling sin and other theological complications, but He does not treat me as my sins deserve,He never ever has and He never ever will… It is me that I get the most upset about. I complicate things by doing things that I know, that I absolutely know have destruction inherent in them.., but I still end up doing them.., as a matter of fact, I have repeated certain forbidden sins to a point where my conscience has stopped warring with my desires…, I no longer feel guilty when I do them.., it is after that I do them that the pain starts.., the hurt begins, followed by unbearable anguish and shame and the reaping begins…, I get affected by such bouts that I get tremendously discouraged and upset I have to humble myself, I have to repent of things that very often I feel like doing everyday, but the Bible warns me of the inherent dangers …, I have to discipline myself harshly.., I have to stay away from certain things…, avoid certain people.., limit myself greatly.., I sigh inwardly.., If only I could be free enough to not worry about sin, evil and God’s Judgment at all times, a dreamer can dream.., that world lays beyond this world. But I know that God has His reasons for
turning me this way and they are always, and I mean always for my complete wellbeing
I load up my hard disk to the tv, I connect it to the usb socket in the side and wait patiently for it to be read by the Tv’s computing system…, Televisions are so complicated these days, they’ve got so many different functions, so many different features…, I enjoy the upgrades since it essentially means that I get total control of programs… I have always disliked advertisements and the brainless trash that is loaded on televisions. The USB feature is enormously helpful to my early morning routines of reading and writing…, because I essentially love listening to sermons as I write.., they inspire and bring out the best in me…, I play Basketball highlights and analyze players and the way the teams play…, I play specific
movies over and over again…, I enjoy specific movies for the sophisticated manner in which they engage my emotions and make ordinary stories into unforgettable dreams that I vicariously relish and live through.., engaging me and my repressed desires of authorship, pastoring and Godly serving… I get the startup screen as soon as I press play the media button on my remote…, I go to the video option and select the Jesus Freak folder.., I spend a few minutes listening to Jonathan Welton, and then some over excited seminary studen beams and gushes about Jonathan Edwards, I find myself getting offended when Christ’s
followers gush and idolize Calvin, Edwards and other Christian greats…, I understand their love.., it stems from the author’s immense grasp of the disarray and the muddle of life, of the intricacies of the Believer’s life.., and their profound realizations of faith that no doubt intoxicate and thrill…, I myself have worshipped the likes of Literary greats in the past.. Jack Kerouac, Anais Nin, Thomas Wolfe, Virgina Woolf and others…, but in Christ, I find my love for rich story tellers and gifted individuals reduced to wonder and appreciation.., but it has not extended to worship.., since God has taken me further in a certain way…, I settle on a video by Cindy Jacobs, noted intercessor and Prayer Warrior…, now I am a bit of a Prayer freak myself.., I have lived and lived in prayer and bowed knees.., I love praying and I love people who teach me how to pray… I have been reading possessing the gates of the enemy by Cindy and I felt like watching her for a little while.., I love deeply passionate and intense men and women of God.., I love people who are like me, but also show me who I can become if I have the right amount of prayerfulness and sincerity…, She has an African American brother on her show, and I turn up the volume at this point.., I am multi tasking as usual…
Torn between reading Out of the Devil’s Cauldron by John Ramirez and The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac…, I have this genius idea to teach the kids at work some lessons of foundation as it pertains to Creativity so I have this notepad open and I have jotted down a few ideas…, another document lies open.., a promising story of a sensitive man has reached a few paragraphs.., but in the midst of such creative anguish, I hear the African American brother whom i’ll call Joe speak about “how his efforts of living the Christian life only made him become a professional Christian”.., at this point I am both bemused since I understand more than one can say and also get discouraged slightly assuming that there are an infinite number of spiritual diseases that can arise in faith and that I can never personally know them all…, I walk close to the television set(You will be surprised by how many revelations I have gotten at this time of the hour).., ‘He spoke about how miserable he felt while he was living that way, He did not want to witness to others about God since he did not want them to be as miserable as he was’. I enjoy it when people talk honestly about their struggles, because that is when I am able to comprehend my own faith.., I think that I caught this attitude from my Father who has helped me a great deal in dealing with spiritual failure by sharing much of his own. The speaker then talked about how God in a moment of inspiration told him that He(God) was never about religion, He was all about relationship and personal intimacy and love.., he had forgotten that and had started living the faith with personal effort…, Wow.., at this point.., I am like, who even speaks out about such complex deviations from the faith with such heartwarming honesty and openness…? I feel the brother’s confession help with my own self inflicted misery and grief.., Strangely I feel relieved and even hopeful.
I see God speaking to me often through my love for my dog.., I make sure that I spend a lot of time with my dog and with my garden…, and when I do so I find robust swelling up of emotions within, I feel God patiently enriching me with floods of thoughts borne out of His love for me… I like to find specific things about Him(God) because I am endlessly in love with Him and wish to know things about Him that others have failed to observe, notice and catch on to… Back to my doggy…I love her so much and the best part is that I don’t have to
understand it, I don’t have to subject it to experience driven, skeptical analytics of my mind or understand the confusions of the heart in regard to each individual no matter how appealing or put offing they are… With dogs, it’s like they enjoy your enjoyment of them… It’s that simple and that complex.. Whatever I offer gets turned back to me in canine delight, joy and endless warmth and affection…. I often see myself in my dog…, woofing away at every person outside the gate as a threat to the universe and it’s balance…, repeatedly performing the same meaningless mistakes over and over again, often times out of a lack of better things to do…, scowling away at my rebukes and punishments but immediately
returning to me because of her delight in me…, I see a lot of myself in my dog.., and I see a lot of God’s relationship in my own side as Master… Having her to a great degree has helped me enjoy the faith as a beautiful relationship with a Supernatural, omniscient, all knowing Creator who finally gets my maniacal determination to prove things, who understands the sensitive soul and the complicated sinner, who enjoys my delight of Him…, Whose watchfulness and dogged determination to bring the best out of me oftentimes gets me immensely frustrated to the point where I swear that I don’t have the same worldly independence that I once gained by rebellion and rejection of my parents and what I considered to be their archaic beliefs and values, Independence that I used to do whatever I wished to do, be it in doing drugs and finding ot new ways of bringing out experiences as I wrote, or be it in playing basketball until daylight broke the passion fuelled dream of
determination…, God seems stronger and more powerful than anyone I’ve ever met…, I know that I can’t see Him.., but it’s like I can’t avoid or run as far away from Him as I can…, I can’t sin in peace, and I can’t feel proud about shouting at somebody, or thinking unloving thoughts to my sister or towards my mother…, I can’t do those types of things anymore.., I am not under surveillance, although the Bible does speak about it.., our lives are being recorded for God’s day of Judgment.., but I see it as living with the presence of God.., and He makes me into a person that I have always longed to be, but I never had the power to be…,
Christ gives me the power to be the person that I speak about passionately in my rants against society and life. Christ gives me the strength to be what I could never be when I controlled my life, Christ makes me the best that I can ever be, and He is not finished with me.., I am still being corrected, rebuked and disciplined behind closed doors and I am still learning how to obey a Perfect God who has no weaknesses, chiefly I am learning how to enjoy it without being discouraged constantly by it if I am brutally honest.
I am surprised by this side of God…, I get tremendously upset with the strict, legalistically bound, rule oriented God that I see throughout the scriptures that most redeemed sinners giggle in glee about.., I just can’t see myself being forced into anything.., I have always resisted control of myself immensely…, I have had a great deal of trouble in the past with accepting authority figures in my own life to the point of tremendous rebellion and outright rejection of their rule over my life.., but I have grown the most in difficult places because I enjoy challenges, and I deeply enjoy learning how to adjust to a place considered painful, difficult and impossible to live in…, but all my accomplishments I credit to my one and
only Savior, whose feet I am not fit to touch, much less clean.
I have to wonder if these incredibly loving thoughts are directed at me or I wonder if they are the byproduct of my own intense imagination..? Being the skeptic that I am is a surprising paradox for many folks, because on one end I have a robust, joy filled expressive proclamation of faith in my areas of service to others…, but in the other end where I am … I struggle routinely with the darker levels of human existence.., with unanswered prayers.., with poverty, destitution, pain, suffering, evil in all it’s forms and types…, I get disillusioned by my own failures and shortcomings in the spiritual life, I get hurt by harsh sermons often.., I get hurt by people at work and at home…, I get hurt that I am caught up in a
complicated situation that takes away 90% of my independence, underpays me and forces me into a situation where I have to humble myself greatly in order to serve God and this service is often overlooked, criticized, gossiped about and thrown aside in haughty indifference…, the remaining ten percent of my independence comes at such a heavy heavy cost, that it harms the soul, disturbs the mind and wounds the spirit…and I have people preaching sermons to me all the time about stuff that they have never ever done in their own lives. You can say that the life of a budding, Evangelist is harder than what most people expect.
But I move forward, knowing in my heart that serving God is my one dream and desire.., In my life I’ve had many many dreams.., a few dreams I have pursued maniacally, I have been obsessed with a few, determined above all things to achieve certain goals that I have set for myself and the pressures that accompany them…, but all those dreams and passions wait by the sides…, looming like forgotten burial stones… buried and forgotten, whilst I pursue Christ and surrender and sacrifice things daily for Him…, through this tremendous struggle I find peace, calm, purpose and a deeper meaning for life than most have dared to ask or find…, I am blessed with many gifts, loved beyond comparison and thankful and humbled to enjoy what truly matters in this life above the mad rush of the world in it’s hollow, empty pursuits.
I’ve come to realize that the Holy Scriptures are far bigger than just immediately dealing with the complexity of our fallen nature and it’s immense disgust towards Holiness, righteousness and Salvation… I’ve seen the Scriptures speak more to me than just right living.., they have spoken to me for hours about questions that I have struggled with, communicated Godly vibrations to me, increased my spiritual joy, improve and deepen my creative urges and passions, and have increased my level of connectivity to the immediate world of the town with it’s rude participants who scowl and mock the things of God and are often so full of inner strife and turmoil that they take yours away as well. But it is in this very place of my great suffering that I find the utmost joy in serving…, often times I am surrounded by people who know how to present themselves, and know the nitty witty dynamics that comes with knowing how to network.., they mingle with so many people that personal touch, genuineness and an authentic relationship with people are overlooked…, they are in a mad rush, the demands placed on them have made them cynical, controlling, authoritative and quite frankly often times unbearable to live with, I am reminded constantly of why I don’t want to be like them.., but I can’t fault them though, we all have our downsides.., I ain’t one to judge.. Never have, Never will.
I’ve see the words of the Bible increase resistance, rebelliousness and defiance from my inner self just because it wishes to teach me the correct ways, and often times helps me see how little my perceptions are in regard to truth, and Godliness.., I always resort to defensive reactions when I feel my own independence of thought, action and life threatened, but I guess I have learned to look past them.., and when I have I have discovered stuff that has taught and educated me. God is quite cool and unpredictable; I love Him more when He is
mysterious.., I don’t like it when I feel Him teaching me absolute truths with absolute rawness.., I guess I mistake it for power when most often it is love, concern, care and consideration… I guess I would like delicateness and empathy, but I guess He teaches me those things in order for me to become a much better steward and servant… All my thoughts lie bare before Him.., He influences and inspires so many thoughts through His spirit that I can’t claim any for my own.
He is pretty mysterious, let’s just get that out there.
I hate living next to others, everything that you say can be taken out of the context of your own journey, and sometimes ends up pumping up their own exaggerated sense of their egos and stories which they claim are true, whilst they lament about stories that they have “suffered” for…, I dislike lies and exaggeration.., I dislike people who speak stories that are just exactly what they are – stories conjured up to present their personal greatness and awesomeness.
The more I listen to them, and spend time with them, the more I find out how
Liars can really sell others stories with make believe emotional theatrics…, all my stories of my personal struggle, suffering and pain lose their meaning when the guy next to me fails to understand what I mean and instead latches on to his own story using mine as a foundation of how he struggled in the face of tremendous poverty…, subtle competition is what I feel in those cases.., envy, jealousy and strife…, the Bible was not wrong to say that our desires constantly arouse jealousy and anger…, but I struggle with the same desires…, God gives me victory over them and I have learned to humble myself even when my story turns up in
other’s lives as supposed life stories of their own.., I guess God has a purpose for
these things as well…, before I write an entire Novel.., I guess that I have to
stop…, I can hear the early morning crows caw questioningly.., and the flickering
sounds of human beings awakening.., I guess that’s my cue to wind up and
close… and sleep.
Until next time Brothers and Sisters in Christ, Stay strong, the battle belongs to the Lord.
May the Lord be with you and keep you.