Wow. These are certainly tumultuous times for me right now. The past few days have just been a flurry of random, disconnected thoughts that go flying through my brain at the speed of, well, I suppose at the speed of electrical impulses. I don’t think five-day weekends are good for me. I’ve had so much time to just sit around and try to find things to occupy myself with, and for the most part, I’ve failed miserably. Even while sitting at home barely doing anything, I’ve had more ups and downs than I usually have in two months’ time.
And why is this? I’m really not sure. God’s been teaching me something big. He’s slowly uncovering something, and I’m not entirely sure what it is yet. But I know that He’s working on something inside me, and it’s the source of my unbalanced attitudes. Inside me, there’s a small skirmish going on between the Holy Spirit and my own flesh, and while I think the former has the upper hand as of now, the latter is definitely putting up a struggle. There’s been a lot of emphasis on warfare recently in my life, though. I mean, read yesterday’s blog entry and you’ll know all about it. God’s teaching me that I am a soldier – I’m part of His battalion in this vicious war that has been going on ever since the beginning of time and the fall of man.
You have probably noticed the nice, shiny new logo up top there. I’m not quite sure why I decided to make a new one, but I suppose it was one of those things that I used to occupy my time. Besides, it was time for a change. The old one had been up there for over a year now (though it’s hard to believe), and so I decided that a small change was in order. I like it. It’s much more colourful than the other one; the old one had more of a pastoral, “I’m walking barefoot in a soft meadow” feel to it. This is more bold. Perhaps it’s a metaphor for the change that’s been going on in my own life – changing from a guy who’s tried to keep himself quiet and locked up to a guy who’s trying his best to be courageous and bold. I’m not sure that it’s entirely accurate, but it’s a thought, anyway. I’ve felt a lot closer to God over the past couple of days, and while I know my relationship with Him isn’t based on feelings, the truth is that we are partially emotional beings as well, and feeling God’s presence definitely helps. It’s just that it can’t be the basis for the relationship, that’s all.
I’ve been reading over some of my older blog entries, from way back when it started. Boy, I’ve changed. That’s obvious from even the very writing style that I use. Back then, I was confused, and the way I write shows that. Now, I find myself being a lot more structured, which is something my former English teacher would love. I mean, I’m still disorganized, but that’s okay, because these are my personal thoughts, not an essay. I mean, I named this place “Disjointed Thinking” for a reason, you know. It’s my apology and warning for what lies below the logo. But honestly, it’s almost painful reading my old entries. I was so sure of myself, so intent on looking good in a blog that no one even read, and in reality, I was nothing more than a scared little boy trying to be bigger than he really was. I’m still that way. I’d like to think that I’ve changed, and I know I have to a certain extent, but deep down inside, sometimes I feel like curling up into a ball in some dark corner somewhere and just hiding away from life. I don’t want to face up to the fact that I don’t have what it takes; I’m always trying to look bigger than what I know I really am. And honestly, that scares me. I wish I could go back in time and slap myself on my younger self’s face – hard. I wish I could shape him up and tell him how things really stand, tell him what he’s doing to himself.
If there’s one moment I’m proud of, however, it’s the moment where I realize this. Of course, with over a year’s worth of posts under my belt, this has happened a few times, but one stuck out to me. It was my moment of realization, and it happened right at the end of November. Read this post, and then come back. Finished? That’s the moment where I realize that all this time, I’ve been trying to become someone I’m not. I’ve been trying to make myself look so good; I’ve been trying to please others instead of pleasing the only Person whose opinion really counts. If you read the posts before, they’re almost all about trivial things. In fact, most of the posts in here are that way. But then, every once in a while, I receive some revelation, either from God Himself, or from somewhere deep down inside myself, that basically hands me a mirror and says, “Take a look at yourself.” And that’s when I find out who I really am.
I suppose that’s really what’s been happening over the past little while. God has some really stubborn clay that just doesn’t want to be molded into the shape He wants, and sometimes He has to just tear down everything He’s tried to do and just start again. How subtly He works! He takes the time to perfect the finest details, and He cares about the smallest intricacies. He’s prepared to keep sculpting us for as long as we are on this earth and willing to be sculpted. And how lovingly He does so! There are moments when I sit back and have nothing to pray to Him, and all I can say is, “You are just so amazing that I can’t even find the words to describe You.” He is so loving, so full of grace and mercy, so forgiving, and so patient with us that it is impossible to describe. Sometimes I just wish He would get angry with me and strike me down on the spot. I know I’ve screwed up, and I wish He would just tell me that He wasn’t going to forgive me this time. But even then, in the moments of my deepest despair, when I realize the magnitude of my error, He still continues to mold me. He continues to pull me out of the pit and set my feet on solid ground. Like the ever-watching, ever-loving Shepherd He is, He stops at nothing to keep us safe from harm and on the path that leads to life and greener pastures.
Yes, there has been a change. I can see it now in my life plainer than ever. My eyes have been opened, even if just a tiny bit, to God’s amazing greatness. He is bigger, better, and more amazing than we will ever comprehend, and the only response to Him that will ever be sufficient is to completely give ourselves to Him forever, each and every day. We must die to ourselves, take up our cross and follow Him – daily. Dying to ourselves means killing off our selfish ambition. It means giving Him our goals and our aspirations, and trusting that He will take them and give us back something even better. He’s never let me down yet when I’ve done so, and I have faith that the same God I serve will treat you even better. The more I empty out myself, the more He fills me with Himself. It’s a process not observable by any scientific means, and yet it’s as plain to see as the light of day. The change He brings is incredible; the joy He brings is immeasurable; the peace He brings is inconceivable. I could go on and on about Him until the last moment of my life, and I would still never exhaust the greatness of His power and His love. He is amazing. He is astounding. And He is yearning to pour Himself out on us. Will we let Him?