It’s been quite awhile since I have done a “Monday School” post, mostly because I have gotten out of the habit of daily writing. Plus, I began to feel as though people might think I was being self-righteous, or showing off, or that they would feel I had some other less-than-good motivation for writing about my personal walk with God. Couldn’t that be getting a little too personal?
In the interest of being real, of finally sharing all of me, I decided to give it a try again today. Frankly, the prospect frightens me, because if I make this public, it means people can call me on it when I stray. *shudder* I guess I am finally tired enough of pretending.
I can’t promise there will be another post like it next Monday, but I am sure my readers can live with that. If nothing else, I am consistent in my inconsistency. So, there’s that.
Rather than repeating the sermon’s points, I just want to share what God spoke to me through the sermon and the text yesterday.
“Then the mother of Zebedee’s sons came to Jesus with her sons and, kneeling down, asked a favor of him.
‘What is it you want?’ he asked.
She said, ‘Grant that one of these two sons of mine may sit at your right and the other at your left in your kingdom.'” ~Matthew 20:20-21 (NIV)
This question Jesus asks of the mother of Zebedee’s sons is more than what it seems on the surface. Coming from the Messiah, it is a question that could be phrased, “What is it you want, and why do you want it?” Jesus already knows her motivation, he just wants her to see it. He wants her to see where her own heart is coming from. The truth is, she was kneeling before Jesus for selfish reasons. She wanted her sons distinguished above all others. She was not concerned with anyone’s interests but her own.
Pastor Jim applied the question to us.
Why is it that we pray? Are our prayers filled with ourselves, or do we take up the cause of others?
My prayers are full of myself lately. My prayer life is lacking. It is dry and lonely and pitiful. Because I have been so wrapped up in my own struggles, that I rarely pray for anyone else, including my husband and children. I have only been lifting my own needs before the Throne of Grace.
Of course, I ought to lift my needs to my Father, but not to the exclusion of all else.
I have to face the fact that I have become self-centered. So concerned with my own interests, that I have not really looked to the interests of others.
So much for “shining my light before all men.”
Now, I’ve always known that church does me no good unless I walk out of the building with it. Unless I take what God gives me, and use it. Even on a Monday morning in which I snoozed my alarm one too many times, and got yet another late start, and instead of tackling the day head-on, I sit and write a blog post.
I did meet with God this morning, and I did lift up others to him, instead of myself. I hope and pray this is a re-awakening in my life, and not just another one of those times where my intentions don’t lead to lasting change.
My faith is real. My God is real. He speaks to me. I want to have the sense to listen, change, grow, and share, instead of wrapping up in a cocoon of Self.
I want to shake the yuck off my wings, and be better today than I was yesterday. And there is just enough optimism in me to believe that it’s possible.
“I want to lose this old cocoon, I want to do it soon, and fly away.”
What did God bring to your attention while you were in church yesterday? What are you going to do about it?
Grace & Peace,
By Seven Day Jesus
You see me,
It’s not me
It’s something underneath my skin
I wanna tear it all away,
And show the beauty that’s within
And throw away the older me
Just give it time and then
I wanna be a butterfly,
Flying in the sky
With you, today
I wanna lose this old caccoon
I wanna do it soon,
And fly away, away
So tired of always crawlin up the tree
To fall back down again
This lonely place where I began
It’s not the place I’m gonna end —
Up so before you sum up all
The missing pieces of my head
There’s so much further I can get
Your wind is underneath my wing
It carries me away
It’s you —
–My God —
That makes me sing
When I’m on my way
Change a little every day
You take what’s old and make it new
So I can be with you,
And fly away, away….