I have come to learn over the past 20+ years (starting with myself!) that the term “Christian” means different things to different people. For some it means following The Big 10 (Commandments, that is. You know…the major dos and don’ts of the Bible). For others, it means living a “good life” and trying to be a “good person.” For yet others, it seems to be something one is “born into” – much like your nationality or a particular ethnic group you identify with.
But what if it means much much more?
5. Sometimes you just gotta suck it up for the sake of your friends. And enemies. And frienemies.
Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests, but the interests of others as well.
4. Talk is cheap. Sometimes you gotta “be there.”
Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
1 Jn 3:18
3. We’re called to love our neighbors…and sometimes that means showing up places. And doing stuff.
…‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL,
AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’
This is the great and foremost commandment.
The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’…
Matt. 22: 37-39
2. God specifically said don’t forsake the gathering, man.
…and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together,
as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
Heb. 10: 24-25
and the #1 reason you don’t get an “Introvert Pass”…
1. It’s the example Jesus set. Not sometimes…but ALWAYS.
…the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve.
For the longest time I thought “introverted” vs “extroverted” had to do with whether a person were shy or outgoing. Given that, I would have quickly labeled myself an extrovert. I have no problem in social situations – in fact, rather weirdly enjoy the challenge of finding commonalities among diverse groups of people. I don’t embarrass easily and can make fun of myself (pretty sure you can thank Mrs. Wolfe, my second grade teacher, for letting that “skillset” bloom). And, though speaking in public is often cited as one of the top 5 worst fears of the masses, I have grown to kinda like it. Crazy, huh?
So, it surprised me to learn a few years back that introvert/extrovert actually has to do with how you “re-charge.” Like, when you have the ability to do anything…do you want to find a room full of people or be by yourself? Do you accomplish more when you’re with someone or does having another human around throw you off task? Do you GAIN energy by being around others or does that tend to suck the life out of you just a little bit? If you’re curious about this, you might find it interesting to learn more from the Myers & Briggs Foundation.
Ok, folks. Let’s recap. This past week, we compared “love lies” (human perspective) to “love truths” (God’s perspective). To be clear, I’m definitely not “anti-marriage” – just hope for people to find contentment at whatever state they might find themselves in at any given time in life – and more than that, purpose and joy! You will not leave this world married, so critical to know who you are and who (or what) you choose to invest in.
Continued from Part I
I’ll spare you the gory details, but let me summarize by saying within the space of a year, I lived in 4 different homes (the boyfriend/fiancé and I never lived together), there was one proposal, one put-the–brakes-on, one re-proposal and one final break up. As much as I wanted to be married, I knew that the God I had come to love even more than my own wants and wishes would put this back together in His way and in His time if He wanted to. And, ultimately, I just had to be okay with that. I’m not at all saying it was easy. It wasn’t. Maybe even one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.
I am convinced that some of THE worst advice to ever exist is to “follow your heart.” The heart is a mess! It is a combination of our (often very self-centered) emotions, experiences and desires. It’s fickle and confused and changes from one day to the next. And this line of thinking is certainly contrary to how God says to deal with it. The Bible says, “The heart is more deceitful than anything. It is incurable— who can know it?” Jer 17:9 and “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Prov 4:23.