Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Getting unstuck in my walk with Christ - Day 14

     Good morning!  I'm feeling pretty good about today's potential - I think I'm going to be able to get a lot done...yesterday was pretty much a no go with appointments and homework filling up my schedule.  I have to go out once today to take care of a couple of things but that shouldn't take much more than an hour - fingers crossed for today's success ;-)

Regardless of yesterday's being a bust, I have done a few things already this morning.
-Washing towels
-Washing dishes
-Going through the 2 huge gray trash bags in the back room...they were pillows!!!...and a bear rug lol.  The bear rug immediately went to the donation pile - I loved it when I was a teenager and feel like a current teenager should now have it.  I also chose 1 of the pillows to give away.  The rest of the pillows will fit in perfectly in my living room - why in the world have I let them languish in a garbage bag for so long?!?  They're lovely :-)

     So one thing that I'm going to focus on today is LBS, which Sarah Mae discusses in her Day 10 post.  When I first saw this acronym, I assumed it meant Lazy Bones Syndrome, which of course is something important to tackle...but also very abstract.  No, LBS means Laundry Basket Syndrome - a much more concrete and conquerable deficiency!  If you are a person whose clean clothes pile up on your bed, in a chair, or in the laundry basket...then you suffer from LBS.  I certainly do!  I HATE folding clothes and so my clean clothes just pile up and up until I have to spend an inordinate amount of time focusing on redrying them to get the wrinkles out and putting them all up.  Or sometimes, I'll want to wear a particular shirt and so I have to dig through to find it and then toss it in the dryer for a few minutes - instead of simply pulling it out of the
     So today, I plan on going through all of my laundry and folding and putting up the clothes that are clean.  The Martha challenge is to do as many loads as you can, but to put away one load before starting the next - probably a good plan...  I just wish that the washer and dryer didn't have such different cycle lengths - but hey, that's a small complaint and I'll live ;-)
     The Mary verse for this challenge is Galatians 6:9 >>

And let us not grow weary of doing good,
for in due season we will reap,
if we do not give up.

What a great motivator and pick me up - definitely a verse to write on my heart for all those times when I just don't feel like continuing with certain tasks.

Okay, so on to Unstuck >>

     Last night I finished Chapter 6 and loved it!  A large part of this chapter is a story by a woman named Theresa about how she went from believing in a God of Rules to falling in love with the God of the Bible.  And that's what this chapter is mostly about - falling in love with Jesus.  What a fabulous and vital topic for every Christian to study.  One of my absolute favorite songs speaks to this so well - Jars of Clay's "Love Song for a Savior":

He's more than the laughter 
or the stars in the heavens
As close as a heartbeat 
or song on our lips
Someday we'll trust Him 
and learn how to see Him
Someday He'll call us 
and we will come running
and fall in His arms 
and the tears will fall down 
and we'll pray,
"I want to fall in love with You"

Maybe I like this song so much because it connects so well with my conversion experience.  I just realized how the last 3 lines of the chorus parallel perfectly with what I shared in yesterday's post.
No wonder this was the song that I ran to immediately after one of the scariest and most painful experiences of my life - one of the "bad things" I mentioned in Day 8's post.
    And...back to Theresa.  I'll give you some excerpts from her story because her words really put it well:
     "I realized I needed to pursue Christ as my closest companion and best friend.  I must put all else aside to be with Him.  He must be my heart's priority, even while I attend to life's everyday business." 

     Remember Day 11 and Day 6?

     "Being in relationship with Him isn't about religion or following rules.  To be in true relationship with Him I must pursue...
     ...His heart
     ...His passions
     ...His character
     ...the truth."

     "Nurturing a relationship involves trust, transparency, surrender, and above all a two-way connection.  Close friends - especially lovers - must talk and grow together daily, not occasionally."

     I know this last bit a little too well from bad experiences in earthly relationships.  In addition, I've been exposed several different times to the incredible truth that Jesus is our husband.  Just as the church is his bride, each Christian individually is also his bride.  Take a look at The Voice's translation of Zephaniah 3:17 >>
The Eternal your God 
is standing right here among you,
and He is the champion 
who will rescue you.
He will joyfully celebrate over you;
He will rest in His love for you;
He will joyfully sing because of you
like a new husband.

     So to truly build a firm and loving relationship with Christ, we must treat Him as if He is our husband...which He is!  And such an approach involves a lot more than passive robotocism!

     Theresa continues, "I am called to a dynamic, life-giving intimacy with Jesus.  He speaks to me; He leads me into deeper love and deeper truth and deeper life through His love letters written just for me (and just for you).  It is only through relationship with Jesus that I can become intimately engaged with Him through His word. And as I feed on His word to me, I am changed."

A great phrase she uses to describe this change is that He works to "love me into His image."

Oh how I want to be loved into His image and have an intimate deep personal relationship with my savior.  While to some degree this is the case currently in my life, there are so many moments when the relationship could be deeper.  I want to fall in love with Him daily and build up a glorious 2-way communication that pervades my life and doesn't just come up when I need Him most or when I am most thankful.

     The authors of Unstuck also add, "As Theresa spent time with Him, pursuing His heart, she began to see, to experience, to know Him as her King and her Lord, her Protector and her Provider, and most of all, the Lover of her soul."

I want to end with this verse from Daniel chapter 2:

22  He reveals deep and hidden things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with Him.

Christ's light illuminates all of our deep, hidden, dark parts and although this may be a frightening concept to some, I want to point out that it is actually incredibly hopeful and uplifting.  Since He loves us no matter what, and He is well aware of our individual downfalls, He can all the better work in us to make us more like Him :-)

Check out Philippians 2:1-11 for more on the heart, character, and attitude of Christ.

State of mind pic of the day
Mazumbai, TZE (taken by me)

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