big strong and mighty

On our way home last night, Grace (my two-year old) and I had a singing contest.  Who could be the loudest? Who could be the softest? We sang the wheels on the bus go beep beep beep…and even though I know she has those words mixed up, I didn’t bother to correct her. whatever.  We continued down 287 headed home in the dark and becoming tired of the bus song, started singing, “My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, there’s nothing my God can not do!/ The mountains are His the rivers are His the stars are His handiwork too”  Grace loves that song.  She learned it at church and loves to sing about “BIG” and “Stars”.  I finished singing it and she began to (loudly) sing her version:  “I am so BIG, I’m STRONG, I MIGHTY…I CAN DO!”  don’t worry, she goes on to sing, “I mountains, I stars, I too….. I am SO BIG! I Strong! I Mighty!!  I Can DO!!!!!”

My response: laughter first.  Then, “No Grace it’s not I- it’s God is so big.”  Grace’s response, “No mama, I so big.”

I laughed again and corrected her to no avail….which I was OK with. She is two.  But, I got to thinking….

Recently, I have faced several situations where the meaning of Grace’s statements have been lived out and the ripple effect of pride has been really really….bad.  Going back to Eve- the original sin…what was it? Pride.  Eve, thinking that she was strong and mighty was too big for her britches…and disobeyed God.  It wasn’t the tree or the fruit that was a big deal.  God gave Eve some boundaries for her own protection and good.  She disobeyed and so did Adam.  It’s amazing how controversial my last sentence is for so many of us.  We HATE the word obey.  (I know…I hate it too)  We want what we want when we want it.  We want comfort and happiness.  We want stuff.  We want more power, prestige, and we don’t want boundaries.  If you’ve had a kid or babysat a kid, you know that boundaries are essential or “someone gonna get hurt.” The boundaries I put on my kids are #1 safety #2 that they would be a blessing (not a curse 🙂 ) to those around them.  God- our loving and capable Father has modeled this for us.  Sometimes we choose to live within the boundaries sometimes not.  Just like Eve had the voice of Evil speaking to her…so do we.  Some of the lies we hear and swallow: 

“It won’t hurt anyone else.”

We all have experienced the negative ripple effect of other’s sin (and our own sin).  For example, I work with many people who distrust the church because they’ve had terrible experiences with leadership.  Sound familiar? Unfortunately, there are lots of people in church leadership that take advantage of their authority and make selfish choices.  The result? Time and other resources are wasted and people like my friends are left with more excuses than reasons to bring their tough situations to someone even associated with church leadership. crappy.  None of us are perfect, church leaders are no exception.  But, when we say (leaders or christians in general) we follow Christ and we live, say, spend like everyone else….when we fall in manipulation tactics to get our way…when we use each other…when we say one thing and do another…it does so much damage.  I constantly ask God for purity.  If you are a follower of Christ- ask Him to help you (for Christ’s namesake).

 

Let’s look at some lies we so easily swallow:

“God would want you to enjoy yourself.”

God loves us and of course He wants us to enjoy life. absolutely enjoy it…. The problem is that when we eat too many donuts, we get fat.  We get diabetes. Trust me, I know.  The problem is also that when we have sex with someone outside God’s boundaries, and then things go south…our hearts get broken. Our hearts get sick.  We judge ourselves, can’t forgive our lack of judgement.  We end up hating ourselves, the person who set us up, and the person that walked out.  The problem is when we choose to speak badly about someone- it #1 separates us from God #2 hurts our witness for Him #3 makes us look like idiots #4 hurts people…sometimes deeply.

“You deserve a break. “

We’re all tired.  We’re spent.  We’re overwhelmed.  So many times my weakness show up when I get completely exhausted.  Instead of taking time to get recharged in Jesus and bring my burdens to Him, I search for other ways.  Any other way.  Facebook. TV. Talking. Driving. Working. Friends. Even food. Anything else than sitting before the Lord.  It’s so stupid too because I know that sitting before Him will refresh my soul….but I buy into the lie that He may ask something of me and I’m just too exhausted.  The funny thing? When I spend time with the Lord, He usually shows me how He is going to carry my burdens and what to say “no” too… mmm saying no- .thats a totally different blog.

Even in the earliest life of the church, God spoke to Paul about us and our dirty pride. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 1 Corinthians 13:11

I wonder what Paul had just experienced when he wrote this….  I know it’s time for me to grow up a little more each day.  I’m thankful for Christ’s humble example and His pure motivation: His Father’s glory.

He is SO BIG. SO STRONG and SO MIGHTY.  There is NOTHING that HE CAN’T DO.

Praying for us all-

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