A Window into Life in the Suburbs


"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Luke 12:27 (NIV)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Bearable

Ha... it rains... calloo callay... Somedays I adore the sound of rain... and the relief that it brings. Not too much, mind you, but just enough to cool things down to the state of bearableness. Not just for me, of course. Always ready to share the love. The herbs... swaying in the hot breeze earlier... had a pathetic droop crying out for moisture... I can almost imagine them revelling in the wet... gulping down much needed sustenance.

Life seems so much more bearable too when there's sleep. An accumulated lack of sleep over days can turn this ordinary melancholic mum into the Incredible Sulk. Nonetheless, there is relief round the corner. Sometimes all that is needed is a half-hour power nap in the arvo just to make it through school pick up, dinner prep, dinner, spouse time.

Not sleeping well for two nights now. Tossing and turning... wondering about THE future, MY future and a whole bunch of silly stuff that I won't go into here. Second guessing myself  in a gluttonous cycle of pain and then I recite Proverbs 3:5 and 6 to help me relax. I don't... sadly. There's too much adrenalin pumping through the body. I try to take deep breaths but I'm no longer sleepy. Tired, yes, but sleepy, no. I am too wide awake.

I tell myself it's ridiculous. I sit up and pick up Tim Keller's latest book, King's Cross. I'm already half way through this wonderful book. The book is a gift... truly... a real gift to the church and to the non-believing world. It's the best kind of book about the good news of Jesus. Dr Keller, above all else is a pastor and one feels his heart pulsating for those who scarcely know the Christ of history. Dr Keller understands that many have doubts... that there's fear in the hearts of men who don't know who to trust.

I read on... The Rich Young Ruler as he is traditionally referred to... a man who couldn't do what Jesus asked. He couldn't bear to give up his wealth to follow the Saviour of the world. That young man knew instinctively despite all he had and all the good he done, there was something lacking in his life. According to Keller, what Jesus was saying to this morally upright wealthy individual was in fact this:

"If you want to follow me and to have eternal life, of course you shouldn't commit adultery; you shouldn't defraud people or murder them. You shouldn't do bad things. But if you just repent of doing bad things, all it will do is make you a religious person. If you want eternal life, if you want intimacy with God, if you want to get over that nagging sense that there's something missing, if you can't find a way to get the stain out, then you have to change how you relate to your gifts and your successes. You have to repent of how you've been using your good things." (p.131)

Keller explains further:

And there are many ways that we use these "good things". We may be using our "good things" to deal with the imperfections that no one else can see. We may be incessantly trying to turn material wealth into spiritual treasure to deal with that inner sense of poverty. We may be trying to turn physical beauty into spiritual beauty to deal with that inner sense of deformity. We also may be using our good things to feel superior to others, or to get them to the things we want them to do. Most of all, we may point to our good things -- our achievements and our attainments -- and say to God, "Look at what I've accomplished! You owe it to me to answer my prayers." We may use our good things to get control of God and other people. (p. 131)

See how that cuts to the heart of who we are... our utter sinfulness. Even what is "good" can blind us to the truth of our intentions. It dashed my pride to pieces last night, reminding me that I had become so works focused/task oriented that my relationship with God was not what it should be or what it could be.


Reference:
Keller, Timothy (2011) King's Cross: The Story of the World in the Life of Jesus, UK:  Hodder and Stoughton.

2 comments:

  1. I love this book, and I agree that it is a gift to the Church...

    ReplyDelete
  2. If I had the dosh, I would give everyone I know a copy of it.
    Thanks for looking in!

    ReplyDelete

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