Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Beckoning

I have had to do a lot of apologizing lately, and that is fine. It is important to do that. But this is a Christian blog, and many of the ideas will seem narrow, since the Bible allows us less freedom than the world. It gives us a different kind of freedom - a freedom from the bondage of sin. Loving Jesus and following the Bible does not make life easier. It makes it richer, more meaningful, and instills a peace and joy that aren't dependent on circumstances.

When a message is given from the Bible, expect the messenger to be imperfect. Don't let that detract from the heart-changing truths. Don't focus on the person, so much as on the message.

Roughly half of Americans are trapped in materialism. I was once one of those, though not to the extent that I was a compulsive shopper, or used things as a drug. What I mean is, I carried credit card balances that I didn't have the monthly income to erase, and it wasn't because of medical bills, or gas and food. It was because of extras I couldn't really afford, and therefore didn't deserve.

Now, God blesses people financially. But he also calls us, before filling our life with things and expensive experiences, to be good stewards of his financial gifts. A good steward gives to others (ideally ten percent of the gross), saves, and invests. If, once those are done, there is some left over for material items, there is nothing wrong with having them. For some, material items fill a void, like alcohol or drugs or sex, that is better filled by God. When not used to fill a void, they are harmless.

Know that children are near and dear to my heart. This blog will also reflect a desire that we, as a society, put them first. They are the future, they are a blessing, and so worth the investment of our time. I stand by my feeling that if material items are more important than good childcare, that is not only sad, but misguided. Something is out of balance when that happens. Society loves to say that "kids are so resilient". That is a very costly rationalization.

I will not back down from Biblical truth. I was 31 before I came to know God - REALLY know him - and I can't tell you how much I wish someone had bothered to help me see him before that. I'm grateful to know him at all, however.

God will meet you where you are at, and he will work with you, slowly peeling you away from your dependence on what is harmful, or worldly. There is great reward, and if you are feeling bothered right now, it is probably because he is beckoning you. The first sign that he's beckoning you is a sudden discomfort with some of the decisions you have made. Let it happen.

1 comment:

Fern said...

I was thinking about your blog and the last couple posts last night, and reflecting on how society puts working moms and stay-at-home moms at odds.

And I just wrote such a long comment that I am going to make it a post when I get around to it, but I wanted to say that I think you've been very fair and balanced in talking about this. It's just such a sore topic for women -- whether they are home or at work -- and that is sad. We're looked down on if we work (don't get paid as much, get passed over for promotions) and we're looked down on if we stay home (we have no backbone, we're stuck in the 50s, "what do you DO all day? I'd get SO BORED being home with my kids!") and that stinks either way.