Semper Reformanda

...some days even my lucky rocketship underpants don't help.

[Saturday, March 6, 2010]


Last night I was working up at the church, and had some down time. Since there was only one class in the building things were really quiet. I took some time to just walk around the church and think and pray, which is a pretty uncommon thing for me... taking time to slow down. I made it over to the west lobby and notice at my feet a little ladybug crawling on the floor. I walked right past it... then doubled back. My first thought was: "Yep, it's getting to be that time of year when ladybugs are everywhere..."

But then, I thought harder.

I noticed where this little guy was going... farther into the church. Farther away from anywhere a ladybug would naturally survive. And it really struck me how *sure* this little bug felt about what it was doing. It never paused to re-think its direction... it never slowed down. It just kept going. I got behind it and put my cheek to the floor to see what it saw. The vast expanse that is the Windsor Crossing lobby. Because of the color of the tile, it reminded me of a desert. It crawled in one direction for a while, then headed for the wall. Climbed up a bit, then back down and back the direction it came. I wondered if this thing really knew what it was doing or if it even cared.

Then it hit me. I'm that ladybug.

I'm predominantly analytical and logical with how I approach things, so work and effort to achieve goals are my bread and butter. If I have a problem, I can find a solution. However, when applied to my walk with Jesus, this has become a hindrance. I rely on my own solutions, my own machinations of what needs to change to achieve the goal... and I don't look up to see that I'm just wandering aimlessly in a desert. Without a clue what I'm doing, and without a care to know that I'm totally missing it.

Reflecting on myself in this manner caused me to get a bit emotional.

I have been so proud of who I've become that I've forgotten to see if God is proud of who I've become. I've forgotten that ultimately, it's not my praise that matters, but his.

This is of infinite importance because though I might be proud of myself... its only in parts of my life. The other parts, well... how could anyone be proud of those parts? So, they get stuffed down and forgotten... but their effects are always felt. This is why relying on our own praise is so destructive. We know ourselves so well... and we hate a lot of what we see. But God... God *somehow* can look past our failures and messiness and love us just the same. In fact, not only does he love the messy us, but he promises to clean us up... to make us like his own son. What an interesting exchange.

This is the truth I've been missing and am still struggling to accept on a daily basis: I am the beloved. Just think about that for a minute.

I'll admit, watching that ladybug I felt a bit like God. I could see where it came from, where it was going, and I *knew* that if it continued down the same path... it would die.

So, I saved it.

It didn't want to be saved -- mind you; it was perfectly happy doing what it was doing. I put my ID badge down there to let it crawl up of it's own volition and it hesitated. It actually stopped when presented with this option. Then, it went around. I tried again... with the same result. Finally, I scooted the badge underneath it until it was -- in some respects -- forced to come with me. As I carried it through the lobby and outside, I held my hand around it in a very protective nature... wondering if it would fly off and hide. But it didn't.

I think that God is, in some ways, forcing himself upon me. He sees where I've come from, where I am and where I'm going... and he knows that if I continue in the same direction... I will die. So God is going to great lengths to save me... continually day after day. Not just an initial "yes" to Jesus, but a more-better life now, in him. Lovingly disciplining me, correcting my incorrectness, chipping away at my stone facade to warm me with his love.

Its hard, it hurts and a lot of times its no fun... but it is good.


ZealousEcho | March 7, 2010 at 5:54 PM

Yea Tim! That was such a good read. Thanks for writing that :) I totally feel the same way sometimes about how I approach things. And then when I see the path in hindside, I'm so humbled.

Way to save the little lady :)

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