Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Love is a Movement - Pt 2 - The Fear of Movement

Ages ago my friend Mike Brantley wrote a blog entitled "why do we run back to Egypt and whine so much". We leave the slavery of our society, or sin, of life and run towards Gods arms, then we feel like we are alone, we see that living a life following the will of God is a struggle. We want the comfort back in Egypt where we were fed, clothed and we seemed to be happy.

The problem with going back is what we lose, we lose our freedom to the shackles of consumerism, to the shackles of the worries of a life that is ordinary. Egypt is not really that good, its a place full of slavery!

But we continue looking back, we whine, and thirst for that which can only quench us temporarily.

Oh man I struggle as I write these words.

Look at the world we want so badly, we seem to continue wanting to go back to comfort, but what does the comfort provide for us. No comfort!

Look at what this longing for more has brought us!
High divorce rates
High Suicide rates
Large numbers of beatings and homicides around what is meant to be the best times of the year, Christmas
A Breakdown of community
selfishness, loneliness, and spiritual poverty.
High levels of consumer debt

The thing is I talk about these in reference to the world, but whats occurring in our church bodies us probably similar
- People struggling with long hours at work because of the level of debt they have. Not having time for families
- a longing for consumer goods to keep up with the Jones.
- credit debt
- High divorce rates among christian families
- Not enough parenting due to the fact that we have become obsessed with work and providing consumer goods to our kids, rather than spending time caring for them, giving them teaching and showing them who Christ is through relationships with neighbours, with fellow Christians and with them
- and when asked to change we say its too hard, too difficult, we can't change and we go forward, as broken individuals, not realising our need, that there is a way we can change. God holds the freedom to break free of our shackles, we have to be willing to trust him and push forward.

Being uncomfortable means making hard choices, means that we are going to give up that which we feel we hold dear, and taking hold of the only one that can give us freedom, Jesus Christ

We have to move past the idea of success being about what we have, the treasures we have built up, the kingdoms we create and move into the presence of God and asks what he treasures, what he wants us to put our efforts into.

For some it will be fine, they have their priorities sorted, but others are going to have to take costly decisions, refocusing their priorities on God, a God of freedom and love!

Freedom is not found in things, in material wealth or goods. The stuff we have can actually lead us further into spiritual poverty and hold us back from the plans that God has for us. The resources that God has given are Gods, not ours! We need to keep on coming back, critiquing ourselves, looking forward to where God wants us to be, rather than looking back at what seemed so good, but actually enslaved us. Moving forward is going to be costly, and its something that I wrestling through with fear and trembling!


Mike said...

Walking away is never easy to do. It is hard, it does require what seems to be a high level of committment and sacrifice. The only reason it seems so high is b/c the value that we have put on Egypt. Why do we do that? Better yet how do we undo it?

It is all the conspiracy of the enemy to distract us from what is important. "If the mass is doing it, then it must be right" we reason. So let's go back to sleep. Damn, I wished I would have taken the blue pill.

But the journey is the fun part. Just get over the mountain range and into the next valley where you can't glance back at what you have left behind. The reminder over you shoulder will hopefully fade. Not that it will be any easier in the new valley or the nubmerous other valleys ahead, but at least you are on the journey. A long hard difficult journey of moving against the flow......

All this to say Nathanael. Stay on on-foot in this journey. I can relate. I understand. You are in a good space. Lounge there for a while with your father and listen to His stories, His voice, His direction.

Nathanael Baker said...

Hey Mike

Thanks for your comment, you dont know how encouraging it was to me as I continue on in my journey. The frustrations I feel at myself, at those I love and care with in the body of Christ sometimes just well up and splurt out in my blogs.
I want people to be able to see what God intends for them rather than the lies that get spun around where they are at, not willing to push through into the bigger story that God has for them.

Its a frustration I have with myself, as I push foreard, struggling with what God wants from me, what he sees.

I see alot of surgery that needs to be done on my own person, on my own heart and desires.

I know a greater love for the lost, a greater love for the Jesus, a greater love for the truth contained in scripture and to move forward in this.