8/31/2005

Sought in Stewards

As I've spent time struggling through my uncertainties and weaknesses, I found a strange emotion welling up in me... confidence. For some reason, I have been markedly more confident in my direction, in my life, and in my understanding of what I am to be doing with myself. Sure, life can stink... but I'm becoming more able to deal with the ugliness I see in myself. Why is this?

I've found two answers. The first is one is dependence. The weakness that is so evident in my life has caused me to become more and more dependent on what God brings to me. Rather than demanding a particular life, I have been growing in my ability to accept what God puts in front of me. That doesn't mean that I don't fight for things, like having UBC switch its service times around. Instead, it means that I'm working on being less dissatisfied with results... "results-based thinking" is, in the spiritual context, wildly seperate from God's desire for our lives.

The second is faithfulness. In my bible reading, the passage I came upon just MINUTES before I wrote this blog was 1 Corinthians 4. Paul is chastising the Corinthian church for the way that they will claim to be followers of a certain Bible teacher, and then arrogantly think that following that particular teacher makes them wiser and more spiritual than others. However, Paul says;

"One should think about us this way--as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Now what is sought in stewards is that one be found faithful. So for me, it is a minor matter that I am judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not acquitted because of this. The one who judges me is the Lord. So then, do not judge anything before the time. Wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the motives of hearts. Then each will receive recognition from God."

See, my weakness is real. Completely, 100% real. I really am that weak, really am that afraid, and really am that disgusted by myself. But as Paul points out, God's judgement of me won't be all that interested in those things. Instead, God wants to know whether I was faithful. It doesn't make a difference whether I was smart or dumb, forgetful or on the ball, bold as a lion or scared of my shadow. What matters is whether I sought to do what my God asked of me, and whether I communicated His Truth as clearly and as accurately as possible.

It's like giving a book report on The Adventures of Huck Finn rather than giving a speech on the future of foreign policy... the latter is something you'll always feel inadequate to do, but the former is something that can be done because it asks you to lean on someone ELSE's abilities -namely, Twain's- rather than on your own. As a Christian, God doesn't ask me to be adequate to a monstrous task... he asks me to be faithful to the truths he has already spelled out for me in His Word!

The many changes I face in my life scare me. At the same time, I'm slowly learning a greater amount of confidence as I turn away from whatever existence my weak self can scratch out, and to turn to a life that depends on the only One who is truly worthy of being trusted and depended on.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6

4 comments:

Benjamin said...

I like your blog Ben. I learn a lot from you. You are a great teacher as well as a humble learner. I Love you and I hope that I can be a part of your growing and learning. I hope that together we can grow in faithfulness. I am excited for God's plan for our lives.

Benjamin said...

Ok, just so everyone knows... my WIFE posted that last one, it wasn't something I said to myself. :-)
-Ben

Cece said...

Hey Ben! All of your writings are filled with great thoughts and reflections. Heh, does reading your entries count as an extension of my devos?

Cece said...

Hey Ben! All of your writings are filled with great thoughts and reflections. Heh, does reading your entries count as an extension of my devos?