Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Battle Within

It's been a crazy, hectic, exhausting weekend. I haven't really posted much here, but I have been reading, praying, considering and posting some over here. I thought this was an excellent post, full of very practical and Biblical guidelines to address some (unfortunately) rather common blogging issues. You may or may not want to read through the comment thread, but you really should read the parent post, all the same.

While reading through the comments there, a lot of issues came up for me that caused me to think about what we as believers are obligated to do as a mandate from Scripture, and what our attitude about that is. For example, we are commanded to love one another. I don't know about you, but I've thought a lot about that over the years and have really really wrestled with it. Questions have come up in my mind such as "how can I love someone who acts like such an arrogant bonehead?!", referring to some professing Christians I've met or run across over the years. Well, the command to love doesn't mean to like or approve of unseemly conduct, it simply means to desire good for them. To love a fellow Christian is to honestly and earnestly want what is good for them, what is best for them, what is God honoring for them. It is to tell them the truth, in love, and it is to be there for them to help them if they require it, in love. I realize that this is an uber-simplification of what this command actually means, but for the sake of not being so longwinded (as usual), I'm just going to leave it at that.

But, what about our attitude toward that command? Do we like it that we're to love one another? Are we good with that and desire that all the time? Well, no, most of us don't usually display an eagerness to love one another from the time we get up in the morning until the time we turn in at night. Some of us are more mature than others and have come to that place of genuinely desiring goodwill for the household of faith, on a very consistant basis. Others of us, well, we have our moments where maybe we just want to bop someone upside the head (in love, I'm sure) and say "snap OUT of it, would you?". I know that doesn't sound very loving, but I think it's probably a fairly honest and accurate way to describe how we sometimes feel. It is so very easy to resort back to the flesh and want to deal with people and situations from that viewpoint. The much harder work is seeing people and situations through the eyes of grace. Therefore, since we are commanded by our Lord to love one another, this is what we are to do, and we are to do it with grace and truth.

I honestly wish I were much better at that than I am, but at the same time I have full assurance and confidence that what He began in me, He will be faithful to complete. My heart's desire is that someday I will be known as that vessel of grace that brings God glory with every word, every reaction, every response. I have SO far to go.

Tomorrow morning, Lord willing, I am going to pack up my camera & gear and run away from home for a few hours to spend some time with our heavenly Father's astounding creation. It's good thinking time, good unplugged time, and I desperately need both.

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