After skimming some other blog posts today, some of which made a reference to C.S. Lewis, I was reminded of a book I bought a while back: ‘Mere Christianity’.
However – and, this seems to be the norm for me lately – I put the book down after the first couple chapters, and never picked it up again. ( Even despite my initial eagerness to absorb everything this brilliant man had to say about anything!)
Today though, is a new day.
Most mornings, I start the day off doing devotions. My imperfect attempt at drawing closer to God, tangled with morning ADD, mediocre coffee, and scribbled ramblings/prayer. But lately I’ve found that this alone is not enough to stimulate my mind; not enough to deepen my understanding of God, of Christianity; not enough to get me inspired or excited about Kingdom work.
In NO way am I implying God is not enough for me.
But it is certainly not enough on my part to call myself a Christian, do devotions, go to church, and repeat steps 1-3.
Before I go off on a tangent about my failings and shortcomings as a Christian, however, this is the idea I’m getting to:
I am finally going to read the book.
( Go ahead; Hold me to it!)
It’s not exactly an answer, just an attempt to stimulate that dusty brain of mine.
Also, as an attempt to blog a little more regularly, I will record my findings.That is, write down what inspired me, what I learned, what I’m sorting through, etc… And of course, please feel free to comment!
Chapter 1 done, and a reflective quote for the evening:
“These, then, are the two points I wanted to make. First, that human beings, all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and cannot really get rid of it. Secondly, that they do not in fact behave in that way. They know the Law of Nature; they break it. These two facts are the foundation of all clear thinking about ourselves and the universe we live in.” (pg. 8, ‘Mere Christianity’, C.S. Lewis)
I remember thinking to myself, several weeks ago, that I was reaching that one year anniversary of blogging. And that, to celebrate such a thing, I should write something…
Well, that was May.
The one year anniversary was June.
Now it is July.
More and more, I see that, if one is not intentional about something, it will come, then it will go…
And like sands through the hourglass,
So are the days of our lives.
I am guilty of that in most aspects of my life. Wanting – intending – to plan something ahead of time; a birthday event, a gift, a favor, etc.; but then procrastinating until it is too late. And instead of showing love to the ones I love most, in a creative and intentional way, they get a big, fat rock.
That I painted.
For Mother’s Day.
Four days late.
Thankfully, (and as I of course, already knew) my Mom loves homemade gifts, and thus, loved my “Rockin’ Robin” painted rock.
But I know eventually, this procrastination must cease. Or at the very least, decrease considerably.
I’m slowly learning to go forth, and actually DO.
Over a year ago, I knew the best way to do my devotionals consistently, was to add it to my morning routine.
Over a week ago, I added exercise to my morning routine.
I think that’s a good word for the day, don’t you?
While doing my devotions this morning, included was this excerpt from The Community of the King By Howard A. Snyder;
” Truly Christian transformation of culture comes through Christ-like ( and hence sacrificial) love, community and being.
But this fact by no means cancels out the responsibility to do, to act, to walk in the words of God. Rather, the being and the doing go together. The being is fundamental, but the doing is a natural result. ”
Too easily I forget to live in faith; and what I do is no longer a result of a Christ-like life, but rather a forced task of my own efforts, in hopes of attaining Christ-likeness.
And doing things backwards can sure be draining.
My thoughts of the morning.
I confess, I just haven’t been very inspired lately. Maybe it’s the terribly long winters we have up here in the North. Started in October, and these past few weeks we’ve been teased with melting snow, only to have it come back afresh a couple of days later!
I’ve also been busy. Yes, busy indeed…
… Watching episode after episode of “How I met your Mother” with the Hubby…
Ok, I’m fessin’ up. I’ve been totally unmotivated.
I can still say that I do devotions regularly! Going through 1 John this past week. And the past couple months, I’ve had this Love theme on my mind. That is, loving God, and loving others. Sometimes, I wonder if I over-analyze how this is done or what it should look like.
Here’s V.18 for you all.” Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.”
On a different note now, the Devotions book I’ve been going through for the past year is ‘Solo’, with the message translation. But now it is almost done!
So my question is,
What is a good devotional book?
“4 Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It does not dishonor others,
it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps
no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but
rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.” ( 1 Corinthians 13:4-8)
A common passage, it seems. Most of us have heard this. Likely, during a wedding ceremony, or an anniversary. I came across these verses the other day in my devotions. How familiar the words, yet how far I am from this perfect Love. Or at least, in achieving this perfect Love.
How often have I held a grudge? Muttered curses at the driver who cuts me off?
How often have I approached the day with a ‘me-first’ attitude?
How often have I become frustrated with people? Or judged somebody?
For as long as we are of flesh, I don’t know if we’ll ever Love like this; Love so perfectly. But I am thankful for the One who teaches and guides me, in my life-long quest to do so. Love like this – completely selfless – can shake up this world. In fact, it already has.
Radical Love. I think I like the sound of that.
“37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” ( Matthew 22:37-39)
What are some ways we can selflessly, and radically love others today?