Random thoughts

Okay, I have to say that it just makes me giggle every single time I am reading about things to do with the Anglican church and see the bishops referred to as “the primates.” Although, maybe the fact that they are primates would explain the events of the last several days.

****

I was riding my bike home from our women’s Bible study tonight, and feeling the sheer goodness of having a healthy body that rejoices in riding hard and fast, of feeling cool air rush past, of being able to move faster than I can run–of flying, really–and I thought to myself, I wonder if there will come a day when I am not able to revel in the joy of the body God gave me, at least on some level. I know the day is coming (and has come) when I am unable to do things I used to do–climbing a 5.11, running every step in Sun Devil Stadium, swim 400 meters of butterfly. But surely even when I’m 90, there will still be things that are marvelous and wonderful about having a body that God made. I wonder if that will be part of the discipline of joy at that age–finding things to enjoy in that version of myself, interacting with God and His world.

***

We talked about the cost of discipleship in our women’s study tonight: passages from Luke dealing with losing your life vs. saving it. Hating your mother and father, etc. Counting the cost before embarking. One of the women, as we were talking about the aorist/definitive point-in-time action of denying yourself and taking up your cross, said with some angst, “I don’t know that I HAVE done that. I mean, I know the Lord, and He has been real to me for many years. But there are times when I look at my choices and think, ‘Have I REALLY jumped into the deep end?'”

And I think that is a very good question to ask oneself. I think there are a great many people walking the halls of churches who have not jumped. BUT! Later in the discussion, as we talked about what a disciple looks like (“if you love me, obey my commands…if you love me, love each other…if you love me, go and bear fruit….”) I brought in the idea from I John that these things are PROOF, not PAYMENT. We do not earn anything from God by obeying His commands, but these things are What You Look Like if you belong to God. If you are bearing that fruit in your life, you know that you do belong to Him.

And so, when we have those moments, and I think we all DO have those moments of looking down into the deep end and doubting (“How could I possibly really know Jesus when I keep [fill in the blank with besetting sin of choice]”) we need to go back and preach the gospel to ourselves, yes. But we also need to go back and recount the wonders of God that He has already worked in our lives–see the fruit that proves out our salvation.

I know that, in spite of the fact that I regularly lose my patience with my kids, and in spite of the fact that the voice in my head tells me that proves I have not Really Committed My Life to Jesus, I KNOW that I have experienced the work of the Holy Spirit in my heart, and have responded to His work in a way that I would not naturally respond, if I were unregenerate.

And I must say, to wrap up this ramble, that I was mostly preaching to myself on that score.

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