Wednesday, February 20, 2008

what's in my pocket

Paul was one tormented guy. Always doing what he didn't want to do and not doing the things he wanted to do. The things he didn't want to do bringing harm, and the things he did want to do bringing true satisfaction. If it weren't for Paul, I would habitually think myself a manic depressive. Three cheers for the chief of sinners.

My life looks drastically different than it did three years ago. Where I once was a Bible study leading, foreign missions doing, scripture reading do-gooder, now I am a once a week church goer and backslidden, sorry excuse for a believer. It's been a miserable road, and I have picked up a rabid pack of pet sins along the way. Currently, the words of Paul are ringing louder than ever in my deafened ears, and it is messy and uncomfortable and awkward. I am in a Bible study with several women from church - a much needed ointment for a parched soul. Really looking at the Word for the first time in three years has been making me squirm. An effort to wriggle free of the inevitable hold it has on my heart. Those little sins that I like to keep in my pocket are being exposed and they are not as snuggly or as small as I imagined. They're rather monstrous and disgusting, actually. Somehow I still want to hang onto them. I enjoy them. But to go before the Lord in confession without the intention of rooting the sins from my life is not true repentance. It is detestable. I am not entirely sure how to muster sincerity.

I am afraid that I will never really love God and experience him as intended. That I will never learn how to live by grace through faith. That my motives will always be selfish and impure. That my life will never matter. The eternal struggle with impossibly simple answers. The constant tension of the life of a believer. Tension that currently has no resolve.

5 comments:

Rick said...

Amanda,

That was an excellent post, and I don't think you're alone. Not being on the campus of Montevallo, surrounded by Bible-believing gospel-preaching friends makes it a lot easier to not care. Stacy and I talk about that alot. We always find ourselves encouraged, like you were saying, when we do finally get around those people again. Being a Christian by yourself can be absolutely brutal...

Angie Davis said...

Yes, you may be a lot of those things, I but you are not alone. I could have written this post. The Lord has been sweet to show me just recently that He is more committed to me than I will ever be to Him......and that is drink and rest to my soul.

And my dear, you wreak of sincerity.

kristen said...

Thanks for this, Amanda.

I felt really convicted by the sermon Sunday about being a people of repentance. And I've got a lot to repent of.

Anonymous said...

I also could have written this post. I grew up in a very religious household, but have grown farther and farther away from that as I've grown older. I don't believe the things that I once did and sometimes I feel like God is not compatible with my life, which scares me more than I'd care to admit. I feel like maybe what I was taught growing up was a lie...maybe that what really matters with God is peace and how you help people and how you care for others, not whether or not you smoke or drink or have sex with someone you love. It's all very confusing, and I often feel like maybe I'm damned, even though I want so badly not to be.

Heather said...

my life is different too then it was on the quad. you're not alone in that. i'm bitter about things, or have frustrations with the church, but not with God, but also my time spent with him is less. i have so much going on in my life right now that i make excuses for myself when i don't spend time with him and that's wrong. but i actually felt more frustration my last year at Montevallo then i feel now. its a lot easier to get over feeling neglected by strangers then feeling neglected by your friends.