I haven’t posted in a few days because my mind has been a stinking, burbling cesspool of negative mental energy and I figured I’d just keep it to myself.
I think New Year’s Day can be harder than people admit. What if you don’t feel eager, motivated and confident about the future? Even my favorite bloggers are bubbling with enthusiasm for the goals they’ve set, the ten pounds they are sure to lose and the sheer excitement to see what Jesus will get up to in 2013.
Me? I’m just…Meh.
And I’m a Christian. I’m supposed to be full of joy regardless of circumstances.
Today, Pastor Dennis nailed what I already suspected was the problem: I’ve run out of gas. I’ve gotten out of my routine and haven’t spent my regular time meditating on the word of God. I’m like a plum that’s dropped to the ground, and absent my connection to the tree, I’m shriveling into prunedom.
Well now, isn’t that a lovely corner to paint yourself into? I got addicted to Jesus and now if I don’t get enough of him I’m a mopey, shriveled up mess. There is no Before Christ available to me anymore.
Making matters worse, I am reading Behind the Beautiful Forevers, a book about life in the Mumbai slums, which makes for feel guilty for whining because I have literally NOTHING to complain about.
But from time to time when I can’t figure out how to act, I remember to look at the gospel and find out what Jesus did. It helps. Today, Pastor Dennis pointed us to Mark 1:35 wherein Jesus got up before the sun, alone, talked to God and waited for direction.
Can it be that simple?
Yes, it can. I know because for two years, I got up at 5:30 and spent two full hours reading the bible and praying before starting my day. That time was arguably the hardest period in my life, yet this practice held things together like a good pair of spanx.
It is no different now. It’s still about practice and without it I get sloppy. Like Dennis said this morning, God is just waiting for me to stop freaking out and lock eyes with Him, so He can remind me what joy is, and how to do it.
I know I can’t do this without God, yet, amazingly, I still try.
Sometimes the New Year isn’t about grand gestures and plans; sometimes it’s just about setting the alarm.
8 thoughts on “The New Year Got You Feeling Pruney?”
fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. What I have learned, am still learning, and have yet to learn is that I become like what I focus on. If I let the devil get my attention of of Jesus and onto all my failures, I become discouraged. If on the other hand, I focus on Jesus, my shortcomings seem to fade as I focus on Him and rest in His Finished work.
Is your church an outdoor church? I noticed that the picture you posted is an outdoor one.
Well kind of…we are a cowboy church, so we are outside a lot but service is usually in our building. The pic is from our fall gathering and we had Sunday service outside.
We do a house/organic church.
You’ve just gone thru your first “trial-by-fire” experience. I don’t know of one person who found Jesus as an adult, was on fire and couldn’t get enough of the Bible, soaked up the gospel, dedicated time to “sit and listen” for His direction as a baby Christian. Two or more years later, a level of security and comfort in His love gives us a confidence to grab life by the tail. Some routines fall by the wayside. . we had to be up and out of the house at 5:30 a few times, you get the picture.
We begin to feel out-of-sorts, it starts so gradual, a little more daily, then BOOM! All of a sudden life stinks. . and we realize we’ve changed our routine that kept us at an even keel. Trust me, this may not be the only time it happens. . . I have been on this merry-go-round many, many, many times since 1994. Each time, Jesus welcomes me back with open arms, no judgements, each time I seem to stay at his feet for longer periods.
When I was still a Baby Christian, I once asked my Pastor, Dr. Alberta (who had been an avowed Athesist till his ’30’s), would I ever stop drifting away chasing Life’s tail and returning, would I ever just stay put for good? He laughed and said it was a constant struggle for us, as mere mortals. We were given the gift of choice, all we can do is make better choices.” So my reply was, “Oh, I see, it’s just like when I was a practicing Jew, always doing good works so I would be scribbed in the Book of Life on Yom Kippur.”(See for Jews who do not have Jesus as their personal Savior, we are taught that our names can be erased the next year if we’ve done harm to another.) Pastor just smiled, shaking his head, “if that’s the way you understand choice, it will work for me.”
As my walk has matured, my choice can be in silent communion with Him at a stop light, in line at the grocery store. . I’ve learned I do not have to set aside a large block of time to dwell in His Word(I ask you- what Aflacer can be that rigid – our groups call and we fly out the door). . .I chose anytime I feel the urge, to communicate, tho’ I do reserve studying the Bible when I’m not driving. . waiting for a plane, in a hotel room, on the porch waiting for company, after I’m so pissed at Aflac’s stupidness I take a breath, look at my reaction and grab one of my Bibles and randomly open it. Every time, I discover a verse that I need right now. . . so that was 5 minutes. . it clears my head and I’m so much more “Christian” by the next call I take. By the end of the day, I’ve been in His Word more than a couple of hours. I’ve found this method works best for me.
My friend Cheryl feels she’s out of sorts if she doesn’t read at night in the tub. My neighbor Nancy goes to her church every morning before she goes to work, she says it’s her time to get right with Jesus.
Doll, you will figure out what works best for you. Right now, just don’t beat yourself up so badlywith recrimination, you are not the first nor will you be the last Christian that needed to modify and re-work your time in His Word. BEEN THERE, DONE THAT, GOT THE T-SHIRT AND WRISTBAND – WWJD?
Have an Extraordinary Day,
Sharon Sutis | Voluntary Benefits Specialist for Aflac
Tel: 810.220.2256 | Fax: 810.220.5757 firstname.lastname@example.org Aflac was named one of the Most Ethical Companies In The World – 2009
So much wisdom in that firecracker package! ðŸ™‚
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