Saturday, December 27, 2008

nehemiah 8:10

[read the scriptures. they are good and they are how we know the Lord. saturate yourself in the word of God and remind me often to do the same.]

"i know of no other way to triumph over sin long-term than to gain a distaste for it because of a superior satisfaction in God...God remains gloriously all-satisfying. The human heart remains a ceaseless factory of desires. Sin remains powerfully and suicidally appealing. The battle remains: Where will we drink? Where will we feast?...Feast on God." (pg. 12)

i have read the preface, the first four pages, of Desiring God by John Piper and i am left in awe. these few words have made me want to be a christian hedonist. i am moved by what can only be the Spirit and i think i might cry. that's all.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

may we fall in love.

i started to read this piper book tonight and when i say started i mean that i've owned it for a while now and i open it occasionally but never really commit myself. i have a feeling this was not pipers intent for his readers (mostly because he told me that in the forward, not because i know him). anyways i got a few lines in and decided to seek out the scripture he was referencing, Ephesians 3:16 about strengthening the inner man. this intrigued me. as i read it in context i found that this was a passage i know well, or at least i thought i did. it's about God's love right? how wide and deep and all that really is beautiful. looking at it in context i believe that paul is addressing the people of Ephesus to tell them that the good news of Christ, the mystery that has been hidden, is also for them, the gentiles. paul states that he, the very least of all the saints, has been sent to proclaim this message of Christ. what good news that really is. can you imagine, as a gentile, hearing that for the first time?
Ephesians 3:14-19 the text says this...

"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God."

paul is saying, people of Ephesus, may you be strengthened by the Spirit deep within you. may you know Christ. have faith. have faith. trust. trust in Christ that he loves you and that his love is so far beyond what we can understand. that in knowing this love we will be filled with all the fullness of God.
it seems that every time before i have missed it. i have read this and been like, "wow God's love is big. that's beautiful." but never before have i grasped that once i know Christs love, once i have fallen deeply in love with Christ, it is then that i will be filled with the fullness of God. and that's what we all want right? that's what we crave. to be satisfied. to know God fully.
to fall in love with Christ. to understand how great he is and to fall in love with him. that is it. how that is accomplished i am not sure, but i know that we are called to pursue answers. hebrews 5 and 6 opened my eyes tonight. i cannot simply be content with milk. i cannot constantly be building the foundation. the author of hebrews urges us to deal boldly with our junk. repent. take this seriously. pursue Christ. walk in such a way that we are living out hebrews 5:14.
"But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil."

constant practice. may that be us. may we fall deeply in love with Christ.

Friday, December 19, 2008

"doing well..."

i want to know Christ.
i want to deeply push into him and know him how he really is.
i don't want to be consumed by "good christianity".
christianity that asks:
did i spend time with the lord?
am i memorizing scripture?
are people keeping me accountable?
am i surrounded by fellowship?
am i loving people well?

don't misunderstand me, these questions are good questions, and they are probably things we need to be asking ourselves more, but for me, right now, i hate the questions. the perfect sequence of questions that if answered correctly mean that i am successfully doing christianity. i've spent a good portion of my life seeking to be the right answers, as if following Jesus somehow means i have to be "doing well". what is doing well anyways? i hate that question.
i have found myself in this place, where i desperately want to know Christ. i'm falling short everyday. i choose to not spend time with him. i choose my sin over righteousness. i choose to be loved by the world instead of knowing truth. in doing these things i have completely exhausted myself. i am let down and worn out. i feel abandoned by the relationships and idols i have tried to surround myself with, all the while i know that it is Christ who loves me and defines me. it is you Jesus who knows me and comforts me. you understand. you are consistent. you are all the things that i am so helplessly seeking for other people to be for me.
so i am here. i feel helpless because it seems as much as i try to push into Christ i can't be satisfied. it seems like every time i begin to wrap my mind around truth satan shows up and starts talking. it seems impossible for me to loosen my grip around some of my idols. if i were to be honest with people, like really honest, i would tell them that i have been fighting for a few years to put some of these idols to death. i sob till i can't cry anymore. constantly battling lies in my head. trying to break down my justifications. constantly having to remind myself where my worth comes from and who it is that does love me. trying to believe that it's enough. i spend days without food so that i can remember to pray my heart out for this thing that kills my joy. i want a new heart, i want a heart that doesn't struggle with this anymore. so often i feel like paul (which is something i cannot often say, but in this one circumstance), i feel like paul wrestling with God, begging him to take the thorn away. i pray that this thing wouldn't own me. i pray that i could worship you. know you deeply. if "my grace is sufficient for you" is the answer i am receiving then i pray you would give me a better understanding of your grace.
maybe i am describing the battle that everyone feels. this struggle to want to know God. love him passionately. maybe other people really do understand this moment when everything catches up to you and you know you aren't following Christ because it's cute or even because it is "the best way". all of a sudden you are following Christ because it seems like in him is the only way you can breathe. in this moment when the weight of being inherently sinful catches up to us. like we can feel the tearing of our soul. like the gravity of being broken and living in a broken world pushes down on us, crushing everything we thought we knew. it's this moment where my lips repeat, i need to know you. i want to know you. please God. i am pleading with you. i beg that i could know you. i want to know you. i need you. i want you to be enough. may i be obsessed with you. i plead.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

my face is hot. burning eyes,
why do i crave to sob when sobbing burns?
body exhausted,
from my head down.
mind is clouded, not fit for use. i don't want to use it anyway.
i want to be comfortable.
don't want to think: to analyze. deep ecology ruins me.
but i must, must i? what am i called to? who is calling me?
excuse me, did you say something?
it burns.
when you cry too much, too much for anyone to handle,
too much to handle yourself,
it burns. your face. my face i mean.
my face is hot.
please, someone. someone understand this.
someone tell me i'm not mad. make me comfortable.
you can't. i've tried.
you wont. i've tried.
excuse me, i'm trying to think. stop tempting me.
don't make this hard.
this is already hard.
why wont you clear it?
the clouds. clear them. i need to think.
by think i mean focus.
by focus do i mean believe?
stop tempting me.
tell me i'm not going mad. tell me this makes sense.