It has been awhile since I have written a post. It seems when I was on fire for God, praying over people daily, writing my monthly blog, praising God with worship, a good citizen to my community and being a faithful servant; I got poked by a pitchfork and yelled ouch.
It is obvious after two long years of spiritual isolation; I was running on my will and not the fruit of the Spirit. Jesus said, that He was the river of everlasting life and if we drank from it we would never thirst. How easy it is to say the words. However, actions speak louder than words. Do you really believe that in the inner most depths of your heart?
The pitchfork came in the form of homeowner’s association issues and power struggle (for the betterment of the community of course), over commitment, rheumatoid arthritis, panic attacks, internal vows, a never-ending fear I could not dig myself out whatever hole I found myself in or imagined. To top it all off if that wasn’t enough, I was focused on what was wrong with the body of Christ and my wife.
Now there is a lot of false doctrine being preached, but I should have dealt with it as it encroached on my sphere of influence instead of searching it out. That is how Jesus confronted it as well as Jesus’ disciples. They called, whatever it was, out as it directly affected those they were speaking to or came across in their travels. That is how I read it in the Bible.
So if you don’t follow that script, what recipe do you think that spells?
So here I am living on a piece of Heaven in North Georgia, my weigh station, until my last breath, fascinated by the river, the mysteries it holds on a perpetual hold pattern. I listen intently for Divine Providence, to break me from the spiritual prison I have put myself in. Unbeknownst to me, I had the key. I was spiritually bankrupt and I forgot I had it and how to turn it.
Just waiting……. my anger increased as each day passed…….no joy in my life……. work is a series of unfortunate events…….my mind wondering how I can FEEL better…..
So after two years of wandering in my own desert, I start reaching out. I was looking for a place I could find fellowship in the area. Sitting in my house on a Saturday, I felt compelled to drag myself to a Saturday night service, in lieu of college football. There were about ten people for an informal service. I met a person who actually lives up and across the river from me. I met the piano player who was praising God. Who, by the way, had received news about a cancer she was carrying. Then I heard a message about how God did not want a comfortable follower. He wanted us either hot or cold, because He can work with that.
I realized I had been numb to God since everything hit me at once. It wasn’t that I did not love God, it was….. I was just too tired to get up for Him. I had fallen and I didn’t want to get up. I wanted to be lifted up. Then when I realized something needed to change, I was for a lack of a better term, still too tired to do something different.
I was actually afraid to feel. I was afraid to once again surrender to God’s will. I was afraid of what might change in me and what that would mean. I might feel something I had been running from.
After that short service, my new found neighbor, said he was going to pray at the altar. I asked if I could join him, since this is what I came for. After two years, I prayed from my heart to God and this man. He shared his burden and mine with him.
The next morning, in lieu of fishing, I was compelled to go to another worship service. So I stopped the debate of whether I should or shouldn’t, got in my truck and drove.
It was there, during the lesson it was mentioned “What Would Jesus Do?” (WWJD)
After about twenty minutes, I was once again compelled to share a thought about this statement. People use this statement as a cute way to deal with a crossroads dilemma. While this was a very successful Jesus marketing campaign, it missed the point.
Did it ever answer the question or did it just give you momentary pause? Or, was it a way to put someone on the defense and push Jesus in someone’s face.
This phrase had everyone looking to Jesus’ teachings, parables and words of wisdom all designed mold you into a morally fit person dealing with life’s problem’s and spiritual dilemmas.
For two years I was, socially kind, generous, I tried not to rock the boat doing what I felt Jesus would do. When you are in a spot and you apply this phrase, I gravitated to Good Orderly Direction, my pseudonym for God, as a means to live a trouble-free life. A life of, so I thought, spiritual comfort.
So what is this leading to? The answer to the question of course.
What Would Jesus Do? Well for one he would have never reached the crossroads. He would not have debated with Himself what He should do faced with a sinful choice.
Sinful Choice- Doing something apart from the Will of God
As a matter of fact, to further that point, Jesus did three things when confronted with tempting situations;
- He referred to God’s word not His own debating skills. (The Devil’s Temptation)
- Jesus said, He only did as His Father asked.
- When Jesus had pause, He went to His Father in prayer. (Gethsemane)
Is it noted in scripture that Jesus asked for an opinion?
So the next time, you ask yourself WWJD, I would ask yourself, “Why are you asking Jesus?” If you have to ask, have you already led yourself to the crossroads of temptation, which you have previously prayed not to be led to? Now you are trying to decide who’s more important.
So if you have to ask WWJD, you haven’t been listening.
I love you all and there is nothing you can do about it.