4.3.13

Paul said it to the people in rome who were like us a bit, they had more important things going on.

i've been reading the Bible lately and all i can think is, that's me. when they talk about the people who only think about themselves. when they talk about the times before you found freedom in God, the times when you didn't care about anyone else. the verses that go like this:
i had the best time i've had in a long time the other day at my grandparents, looking through books, not worrying about anything, just looking. not even needing to find, just passing the time without even knowing it.


You can readily recall, can’t you, how at one time the more you did just what you felt like doing—not caring about others, not caring about God—the worse your life became and the less freedom you had? And how much different is it now as you live in God’s freedom, your lives healed and expansive in holiness?

It goes on,

As long as you did what you felt like doing, ignoring God, you didn’t have to bother with right thinking or right living, or right anything for that matter. But do you call that a free life? What did you get out of it? Nothing you’re proud of now. Where did it get you? A dead end.

this book had a map inside. i haven't started looking for the  treasure yet. 
why is it so hard to understand that in all our wanting wanting wanting... there is no real freedom or joy or peace or happiness or anything; because we're stuck in this rut of trying to be what want to be, like someone else or whatever it is, striving for this and for that and running around, exhausted, just going going going. trying to get something, trying to get what we want. 

but even if we do get what we want. we're not happy. not if we're doing like i am, for me me me and what? what then? 

this probably makes absolutely no sense, and if that's the case and you're still reading, i do apologize. i just want to post these words that i read this morning and i knew this was me. exactly me. 

I’m full of myself—after all, I’ve spent a long time in sin’s prison. What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary.

But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help! I realize that I don’t have what it takes. I can will it, but I can’t do it. I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time.
"if you wish it," said peter pan. 

It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.

 I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?

The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.

So... what's all this adding up to? All my inadequacy and everything, what's it going on about? Romans 8:5-8 says,

Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. 


At this rate I'll be posting the whole book of Romans. 

"But if God has taken up residence in your life, you can hardly be thinking more of yourself than of him... for you who welcome Him, in whom He dwells -- even though you still experience all the limitations of sin -- you yourself experience life on God's terms. It stands to reason, doesn't it, that if the alive-and-present God who raised Jesus from the dead moves into your life, He'll do the same thing in you that He did in Jesus, bringing you alive to Himself? When God lives and breathes in you (and He does, as surely as He did in Jesus), you are delivered from that dead life. With His spirit living in you, your body will be as alive as Christ's."

Experience life God's way. Not my way. Hmm.


 So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go!

the moon this morning. have you seen the stars at night? looking up at them is a glorious moment.
This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!

Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing...None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.

Do we get what this means? Could it really truly possibly saying that... my insuffiencies are not all of me? That I'm not done for because I never do the things I want to do and I do do the things I don't want to do?

dear Jesus, 
please do a miracle in me

 funny. there's a song come on when i wrote that. it's called i need a miracle. 


 mighty to save, laura story
in the little things, the big things, all of everything... 
Jesus. He is mighty to save. 
the most bestest part of life...
is that these aren't just words
in this life we live. 
it's the realest thing there ever is.
Jesus. 

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