Friday, April 16, 2010

The Uglies.

I once heard someone describe their relationship with God as this beautiful picture. While listening to their description, I felt like Heidi running through the Swiss Alps with two braided pigtails and breathing in cool, crisp air and singing something out of the book of Psalm. It sounded awesome.

But, it really made me feel a bit inadequate because, my life...looked nothing like that.

The other day I was describing my journey to follow Jesus to someone I didn't know very well. And I'm quite sure the picture I painted was nothing like the picturesque mountain scape of Heidi. In fact, maybe it looked more like a big heaping trash-pile in a junk yard?

Broken lives are often very messy with many broken pieces. As my life has been over the years: One. Big. Mess.

Growing up in church, like many of you, I have heard these terms, "Jesus is my spring of life." or "Jesus is leading me to green pastures." to describe what it's like to follow Jesus.

And while I have no intentions of poking fun at those types of sayings, I think by using those terms to describe what it's like to have a relationship with God, when the uglies hit...we don't quite know what to make of them.

I have yet to find someone in the bible where all they did was walk through green pastures and dance at the springs of life in the name of God. For real. Following Jesus is hard and's ugly!

Over and over God keeps reminding me that I'm not to promote myself, that I'm not to think I have anything to offer anyone and that this world would still continuing spinning if I wasn't here.

Ouch. That's ugly. But that's the truth.

Unfortunately, there's this little ugly thing called pride that starts to slip into everyone at some point or another. Typically, it seems to pop up when things are going good.

Then, for some reason, pride gives us the ok to play God for a little bit. Because it makes us think we don't need God.

"When pride comes, the comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom." -Proverbs 11:2

Remember the devil's own issues with pride in heaven[Isaiah 14]? It was ugly.

Pride gets us all disoriented. It tells us that we can make things happen and that on our journey we are God's gift to everyone.

News flash: Everyone on this earth is here for the same reason. The will of God is the same for you, me and the scary woman that is way obsessed with the weeds in her driveway down the road from me.

To follow Jesus and to lead other's to follow Him. That is the will of God. Nothing more, nothing less.

That's why I don't really like it when I hear people say, "I'm praying for the will of God in my life."

Because God's will doesn't change for anyone. The plans and the road that He leads each of us on to accomplish this? Yes, those are very different. But the will of God has never changed nor will it.

Pride convinces us differently though.

But the good news is, we can keep pride in check...always. The grace, love and mercy that Jesus offers to each of's more than enough to keep pride where it belongs.

Sometimes we just have to experience a case of the uglies to help us realize our need for a Savior once again. Jesus didn't come for the perfect...He came for people just like you and I. Whose lives sometimes look like a big pile of trash.

And that's ok. Because He's more than enough...even for the messiest of piles.


On Purpose said...

I love you and you are a beautiful example of how the 'real' truth lives in you and out of you...thank you for being a real Jesus girl. And just so you know...this whole issue of 'ugly pride' can bond us like sisters across these miles...not like its a good thing to have in common...but girl I SO get it!

vikkiscrappygal said...

A word in due season,thanks

Shiny Boxes said...

What a wonderfully put post! Ditto. Thanks so much for sharing and being so real. Blessings.

auburnchick said...

Oh boy, are you right.

I think people have this mental image that Christians are like the hippies of old, running through life without a care in the world.

In reality, we are slogging our way through bogs that have the potential to drag us down. They sap our energy and leave us broken.

This "real" path is the only one that leads to God.

Our purpose, according to what I was taught in Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) is to glorify God. That is why He created us...why He created everything.

Thus, we should always strive to honor Him, through growing closer to Him and spreading His Word.

This can only be accomplished by acknowledging that our lives aren't as rosy or perfect as others assume them to be.