Has it really been that long since I posted last? To anyone that does try to venture here on some semblance of a regular basis, I apologize. There have been several things getting in the way of it:
(1) School – Exams were recently. I found I pulled another 4.0 for the semester bringing my cumulative to 3.957. That darn single B!!!!
(2) Work – This has been huge. Because of it, I have lost every bit of a social life, especially the Christians I still hold so close in my heart but not in my life, it seems.
(3) God – This blog has generally been a place for me to share what God has been doing in my life. Well, one of the reasons I haven’t been posting is that God hasn’t been doing too much. Or rather, I haven’t been looking, I suppose, or doing my duty and discipline.
I’m having another spiritual slump, but it’s just more like weakness. I’m not steeped in sin over my head, or anything. It’s strange; God’s doing His part. He’s using me, moving me, working through me, even in spite of my lack of fellowship with him right now. I’m struggling a lot with doubt. A lot. I keep asking God for signs. I did always think this was wrong, until I looked thorugh John. MOst everybody in the book of John did not believe until, or only believed as a result of, a “sign” that Jesus did, so God has been telling me, I think, “dude, try Me.” I’ve told God, that I’m going to continue being faithful no matter what – no matter how crazy I think this all may be, no matter how rationalistic my mind starts becoming, no matter how much my faith dwindles, I WILL NOT stop just doing my duty and trusting God to pull through. I can’t. God has certainly seized me to the point that I am in His hand, and though He may give me up to periods of sin and faithlessness, I know He will never let me go. I am forever at his disposal to do with as he pleases. And he is.
You know what? This reminds me of the story of the Prodigal Son, or rather, the more accurate title should be the story of the Older Son. The MAIN point of that story is when Jesus looks over and uses it to tell the Pharisees (who were complaining about Jesus hanging out with sinners) the same thing the Father told his jealous oler son, “All that I have is yours! You could have been rejoicing and partying it up this entire time because you were here! And now, because you decided not to partake in my joy then of knowing you, you complain now that the sinner that has been forgiven IS taking advantage of it!”
I feel like the older son/pharisees. God has designed the Christian life to be simple: a reciprocal relationship where God’s ultimate joy is our ultimate joy and our ultimate joy is God’s ultimate joy. It’s kind of strange though, that as I stated above, God is working through me to HIS good pleasure. That means He is still working His will in and through me to His joy while I’m miserable. He keeps telling me, “Paul! Wake up, I’m having a party working in and though you! Come, partake in that with me and fellowship with me!” He is like the ghost of Christmas present: “Come and know me better, man!” That was a great random allusion.
Can it be that there is this huge storehouse of joy, satisfaction, and contentment just a bible page away? How foolish am I to wallow in the death, destruction, and melancholy of the flesh and world when God Himself holds his hand out to me in love, kindness, power, mercy, and grace, wanting only to share His joy with me, for “His joy is me strength.” Paul, Paul, Paul. At this point in your life when you NEED to be as intimate with God as possible, why do you resist like the foolish human you are? Take hold of the grace allotted to you, and rise up and be the man of God you were meant to be!!!
I shall end with the prayer I wrote in response to a meditation by John Piper about truly “loving” God:
I fear, I know I love you not as I should – as I need to. My zeal and dedication are there – and always with me. but love? Do I love thee with a fervor which compels my heart and mind and hands and soul and spirit to do only that which glorifies you? Frankly, no. What fear is it that binds my life in this seemingly stagnant state? Fear of being disappointed/disappointing to you and by you. There. I said it. Fan into flame the gift passed down to me from you. I feel you doing it. Continue doing it and make it hurt – to your glory and my joy be all things. I love you”