Not In me

The last couple of weeks have found me in thinking mode. It's kind of oppressive, and I'm not a melancholy person. Life is going well right now. My days are mostly filled with Mommy activities--discipline and diapers, food and fun. I also work from home as a grader for two online graduate classes. I'm working on a book with a team of writers, with a deadline far away. I try to keep the house clean since we are trying to sell it. I'm dealing with an irritating case of hives, but it's not painful, just...irritating. My relationships are good. Probably the most painful thing going on there is worrying about my mom and working through the occasional spells of sadness at losing my step-father last spring. Nothing too huge is going on, just life mostly normal.

So what's going on in my head? I tried to verbalize it to a friend and could only come up with age old truths that were recently incarnated in my life. My husband had jury duty last week. He came home shaking his head at the number of people in his jury pool who had been directly affected by a violent crime. More than half of the 60 people there. It got us thinking about how our family is not "normal." Not the way most of the world works. Nothing like that has touched us directly.

Around that same time, I read a blog article titled "The Mystery of Sexual Orientation" in which the author shared her youthful struggle with attraction to girls and how Christ delivered her from that struggle and deep depression. She's been married (to a man) for many years now, yet because of her past she has a deep love for the gay community and even works among them as editor of Dallas's alternative magazine. This article, published on that magazine's blog, was beautifully written. I highly recommend it. But be warned--the comments it elicited range from the supportive to the vitriolic. Never have I read such hateful responses, such blind rage that someone dare consider homosexuality to be wrong. The author had to know that her words would provoke many, and did they ever!

Many of the responses were politely supportive of the gay lifestyle and sympathetic to the author's plight. Some were firmly convinced the author lived in denial, while others encouraged her to press on. But there were those that spewed evil--heavy sarcasm mocking her God, her faith in Him, the Bible she follows, her choice to remain obedient to Him. It was sometimes hard to read. It hit me like a slap in the face, for they mock my God, too.

So those age-old truths are these: there is darkness in this world, and by God's grace I live in the light. Hence my unfamiliarity with such people, such violence and hate. I know about them but rarely experience them personally. And yet--and here's what's really bothering me--I am called to let my light shine before people, so that they may see my good works and praise my Father in heaven. I'm not called to hide in my little bubble of Christian friends and family, never reaching out or even exposing myself to those who don't know God. I know that truth.

But I'm here with my kids, tied down as it were to the house most of the time, with my hand in various projects that do serve God. At this time, I seem to serve other believers, whether guiding students through class work or providing a resource for church leaders or leading a Bible study for other moms. And hey, mostly I'm called to raise up my kids so that they will also come to love and put their trust in Jesus. That's a full-time job!

But I wonder if I can't break out of this sorority sometime. Meet people who don't love Jesus, get to be friends with them. Remember why I love Jesus and why he is the only hope for any of us and maybe be able to communicate that to someone who doesn't already have the answers.

A song came on tonight that encouraged me to remember that it's not about me :) Even if and when I do find a place to serve the "world" I won't be doing anything great for God. He doesn't need me, but He wants me. And that lightens my heart.

If You ask me to leap out of my boat
on the crashing waves
If you ask me to go preach to a lost world
that Jesus saves
I'll go but I cannot go alone
'cause I know I'm nothing on my own
But the power of Christ in me
makes me strong, makes me strong

Cause when I'm weak, you make me strong
When I'm blind you shine your light on me
Cause I'll never get by living on my own ability
How refreshing to know you don't need me
How amazing to find that you want me
So I'll stand on your truth and I'll fight with your strength
Until you bring the victory, by the power of Christ in me.

"In Me" --Casting Crowns


San said…
Enjoyed the Lewis quotes. Appreciated your words about the Dallas Observer blog. Love the new photo!