Wednesday, October 8, 2008
My Pastor called me while at work yesterday and we had this strange conversation. It wasn't strange on his part, but on mine and after we hung up I thought to myself, "poor Pastor Danny got an earful today with not one word of encouragement. He probably hung up and thought, Yikes! I'll think twice before I call her again!"
I guess I've been in a blue introspective mood lately. You see, a few days ago was my 23rd Birthday...spiritually speaking that is. 23 years ago I made the decision to give my life to the Lord. Up to that point I had made such a mess out of my life that I thought, "if He created me then He must be the expert on how to run my life." I simply failed when it came to reading the owners manual.
He led me down paths I never would have chosen for myself and asked me to do some things that left me quaking in my shoes, but with each "ask" I learned that He was always beside me gently encouraging me to continue following. The first several years were some of the most difficult of my life, but I wouldn't trade those experiences or tears for all the riches this world has to offer.
So why am I so blue? It's something that I've felt in my heart for quite some time now, but have been unable to put down in words. When I first became a Christian everything was new and exciting as if I was truly seeing the world for the first time. I spent hours reading my Bible, going to every study that I could find, asking questions and searching out the answers in scripture, but above all else I wanted to be pleasing in His sight. I wanted for Him to look down from His throne and say, "Well done, good and faithful servant." And, it wasn't just me. It was everyone that I went to church with or a person that I would meet in a store or on the beach and I just knew that there was something different about them, and so I would ask..."do you know the Lord, are you a believer?" My question was always met with a joyful "YES!" And a new friendship would be formed.
23 years into my relationship with Him and I still desire to please Him. Don't get me wrong. I'm no goody two shoes and I've spent plenty of time thumping people on their heads with my Bible (I think it was more like pounding and beating) who I know didn't appreciate it. Sure, I could have used more compassion, but I felt this fervent desire for everyone to know what I now know.
I had passion! AND CONVICTION! Something I feel is missing in the church today. No one feels convicted about their sin. We used to hear of God's Holiness taught from the pulpit and sexual purity and what is required of us as believers and followers of Jesus. it breaks my heart seeing new believers who are comfortable continuing in old habits and living as if there are no consequences.
What has happened to the church? I'll tell you what I think? I think we are so afraid of offending people that we've watered down the Word of God. We've hidden our lights under a basket and we've lost our ability to be salt in the world. I just wonder what is it going to take to wake us up!
Oh! I haven't seen my Pastor since that conversation so it will be interesting to see what happens when I do. I think I should probably apologize.