Lord, I just want to ask for Your guidance as I write this. I do not want to let your words fall to the ground, I know You have been speaking to me in this and so I just ask that You would help me. Holy Spirit, please lead me.
I'm just going to start out that way because I don't want to write from myself. I have found prayer is an excellent way to get my words out of my head and put God's words there.
I have been thinking about honesty a lot lately. I want to live my life in a way that is as honest as possible. Many times this costs me. It costs me friendships, dignity, pride... but I have found that I would much rather live in this humble state than one of hiding. It's much more difficult to hide. I have hidden before, you have to build up walls and be careful about what you say, you have to look good and together all the time, you have to smile a lot and have all kinds of meaningless spiritual words... it's way worse than just being honest and humble.
Lord, help me.
James 4:4 -10 says:
You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit He caused to live in us envies intensely? But He give us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
"God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble."
Submit yourselves, then to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Wash your hands you sinners and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up.
If you ever just want a good spiritual slap in the face just read James. He will totally do it for you. It's good. Man, I really just need to memorize the whole book. I feel like as a believer I settle so much for less than what Christ calls us to. It's easy to compare myself to this person or that person and think, yeah, I'm doing okay, I'm not as bad as her or him or whatever. Really, I want Christ to be my standard.
That part about being friends with the world... I have to go back to that. I am totally a friend of the world. I have loved the things of the world. Television, Facebook, People Magazine... I mean, just stuff to buy, stuff to have, I have loved the praise of man for my singing and talents... what does it look like to forsake friendship with the world? Would that require something drastic in my life?
I am wanting to purpose to live my life with an arms length between me and the world. I have two friends who just got rid of their iPhones. It's interesting because they don't know each other and I just had conversations with both of them in the past maybe week and a half and they were like, "I spend too much time on this thing, on Facebook and I'm neglecting my husband and my kids." Seriously, it was like the Holy Spirit convicted them of the exact same thing. For me, personally it is television. I'm such a sucker for TV we can't have one in our house or it will be on all the time and it will be a very real struggle. I also have to purpose not to be on Facebook for more than a few minutes, not to check every notification, not to check every text message, I don't even answer every phone call. It's difficult when you are reading a book to your little boy and your phone is ringing... do you answer it to be polite to the persona on the other line or do you stay with your little one and in doing so communicate to him that he is more important than your phone? Is there a balance to that?
I've been listening to Francis Chan a lot the past few days. I like to turn on his podcast sermons while I get ready as sort of an extended quiet time. He's been preaching to me about this all out Christianity thing. I mean, if I'm going to say that I love the Lord and I'm a Christian I need to actually follow Christ, know the Word, pray. Pray. Man, I want to be in prayer at all times. I don't want to settle for mediocre Christianity. I want to live my life all out for His Kingdom and for His glory.
Jesus, help me in this.