When Reality Bites…Belief

Oh, the arrogance. Just nothing but pure pride. This may surprise you (wink wink) but I do get that way at times. Since I was the only paid pastor working with teenage students in our town, I was asked to be on a small ecumenical team trying to reach the youth of the city. The team was made up of a handful of people who were volunteer youth leaders from a variety of churches that would meet once a month to plan a big event to reach out to the students once a year. By at least a decade, I was the youngest member on the team. And, by at least a decade, I had the least amount of experience in ministry. I attended my first meeting with them, listened to their ideas, and then went home thinking, “It’s obvious they need me. So, I’ll make their event better and teach them how to do youth ministry in the process.” Me and my humble twenty-something wisdom shining brightly in that thought…

The event did go off more successfully than even I had thought, and each of the youth ministries represented at the event, saw an influx of new students immediately after. It was a huge success. In all of this, what I believed was that I was a fabulous youth pastor who simply just had a gift. And why not? The youth ministry at our church had grown tremendously over the last two years I had been there, which in turn, caused the church to grow. I realize now, in my late-thrity-something wisdom, that very little did that growth have to do with me and very little of that event going well have to do with anything “fabulous” I did. I believed I was humble. I believed I was this great teacher. But reality showed what I really was-arrogant, prideful and not very humble.

This summer, I watched Hidden Figures, a movie I believe every person in America should watch. It didn’t show the extreme racism that tends to make the news, or like we saw in Charlottesville. Nope. It showed the everyday, common, subtle (to me, a white male) racism that went on and continues to go on to this day. There is an exchange between Octavia Spencer’s character-Dorothy Vaughan, and Kirsten Dunst’s character-Vivian Michael. Michael, who is Vaughan’s boss, should prejudice toward Vaughan throughout the whole movie. Again, not in a riot-down-the-street kind of way, but in a subtle, everyday common way. Michael makes this remark “I have nothin’ against y’all.” Vaughan replies, “I know. I know you probably believe that.”

This exchange epitomizes what I believe a lot of us struggle with-the difference between what we believe and reality. Those words were incredibly convicting for me, and I’m thankful for the writers for that fact. I need to be convicted, pointed out, made aware.

I know for me, I need to constantly examine myself if what I believe I am is living up to the reality that is actually going on around me, the reality that I’m living out. I need people in my life to help me by giving me a dose of reality if what I believe about myself, how I act, my tone, my vernacular, my attitude, isn’t really the reality that I am living out to those around me. Just a simple thought, with a deep self examination that I need. Perhaps you need it to.

be blessed today

 

Picture credit: ‘The Architect’ © Erik Johansson-Source: https://www.yellowtrace.com.au/surreal-distorted-reality-by-erik-johansson/
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The Hard

It’s been hot here. It was forecast to hit 110 Fahrenheit a few weeks ago (not normal), but smoke from wildfires across the state as well as up into Canada, helped keep the sun’s heat down to a mere 108. We escaped to the coast. Down to the southern corner in a little cove of, well, serenity. We went camping. Iris and I where avid backpackers in college, but that wasn’t possible in Russia. And in Mongolia, we did a fair bit of camping in yurts. All of our backpacking gear we left here, and we have been slowly upgrading it to newer items. We’ve also been exploring this whole world of car camping. It’s been a lot of fun, and hopefully, I’ll get to take the kids backpacking soon, maybe next Spring.

I digress.

This little cove of serenity I was talking about… The tide went in and out over 8 and  half feet at some points. We found “hidden” coves where we had to use a rope to climb down to the momentarily exposed beaches (perhaps a kayak or two are needed in the future). One morning, early, when the fog hadn’t fully left the inlet, and the kids and Iris were asleep, I took my coffee and went for a walk to the beach. The water was out a good 100 meters or so as it was the point of lowest tide. I explored. I explored tree trunks that had been there for years, slowly succumbing to the sea. I saw mollusks, crabs and other creatures that were exposed for such a brief time.

And then  I saw veins of hard rock that ran straight up the cliffs and the whole width of the bay. These veins of hard rock were anywhere from a few inches to 2-3 feet high, creating ridges, like you would see in driftwood. The softer, porous rock had eroded away much sooner, and mollusks had attached themselves to these hardened veins. It was…incredible. I so enjoy the early morning thoughts and reflections that come…just like Jesus was standing next to me, drinking a cup of coffee and just waiting there, patiently with me.

This bay was scarred. Scarred and marked from centuries, maybe millennia, of continual thrashing by the waves. The pic above is my oldest walking in one of those scars.And yet, those scars are one of the most beautiful things about that cove. In some of these pocks and holes made by erosion, are where the hermit crabs hid, the anemones, starfish and sea urchins had attached themselves. It’s where the cove really came to life to be honest.

This season that Iris and I have been walking through, we have posed the question “why does it always have to be the hard things?” I’m not sure if you have ever felt that way, but it seems as though we are constantly doing the hard. I know that’s not true. One thing I’ve learned is that when I start using extreme terms (like always, never, every time, constantly, etc.), that is a sign I’m not seeing things objectively. I am caught in a rut and can’t see out to see the bigger picture of it all.

And, another thing I have learned, is that in the hard, that is when we are formed and molded the most. That’s where I learn, that’s where I give pause, reflect, lean into community, lean into Christ….pray…the most. Yes, those things also happen in times of great rejoicing and in times of great calm. But, they most often happen when I’m being tossed and turned by the waves and situations of life. It sucks. I won’t sugar coat it. And for those of you who have gone through it, I think you would agree. And each time, it takes me a while, to finally come to a point of allowing it to happen and allowing God to show me why, as opposed to me trying to figure it out like it was some trigonometry math problem.

I’m not sure where you are in that process, but perhaps this brings you hope. Perhaps it lets you know that you are not alone and you’re not the only person to walk this road. Or, maybe it brought a bit of perspective. Either way, one take away for me…..the beauty is in the scars.

be blessed today

Poverty-The Misunderstanding

In my 37 years of life, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the story of the “widow’s mite,” but it’s been several. I may have even preached on this passage in Mark 12 at some point, but I don’t remember. The sermons go on how incredible it was that this woman who had nothing, gave out of her poverty. And, in all of those sermons, I’ve only ever heard this passage spoken of in regards to finances. Perhaps that’s true.  But maybe, just maybe, it goes deeper than just finances.

Last time, I shared my initial thoughts on poverty. To be “in poverty” means that one has very little of something. Generally speaking, we almost always refer to wealth and riches when we speak of poverty. But what if poverty was also poverty of grace, worldview,  culture, understanding of race, gender and social class privilege, etc.? And what if we all had poverty in our understanding of God’s love and power?

I believe we are all in poverty. Every single human on this planet is in poverty. Perhaps not in financial poverty as according to the UN, but in poverty of understanding. Or, in poverty of love. In poverty of justice or maybe in poverty of action. I know I am. I cannot understand what it is like being a women in a man’s business world. I can’t fully grasp what it means to be a minority. I can’t have a clear picture of what it means to have absolutely nothing. But, I can try. When we don’t try, aren’t willing to try or think that we aren’t in poverty, this is where we, especially we as followers of Jesus, I think this is where we are blinded by the plank in our own eyes.

We will always have at least two sides of a political campaign (otherwise what would be the point of having elections?). There will always be other ways to interpret data or look at a situation of need. But this shouldn’t hold us back from trying. What we can do is try, try to learn and understand. Try, as best we can, to see the other persons perspective, the world as they see it, to see God in the way that they do.

What if Jesus, in this parable of the Widow’s Mite was actually pointing at the fact that the constructs and oppression of the society the widow was in was causing her to feel as though she had to give all she owned into that kettle? What if she didn’t know she could give less and not have to “keep up with the Jones’?” What if part of her poverty was not just financial, but it was the poverty of being suppressed in a system that advocated bigger, better, more-that said she had to give all she had, even if it meant she wouldn’t have anything to live on? And perhaps this parable is speaking more about the rich and wealthy for creating such a system? Maybe these wealthy were the real impoverished ones. Maybe.

be blessed today

 

Photo Credit: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net

Are We At A Pivotal Time?

Change is hard. It just is. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a superficial/minor change, or a change of your whole core value belief system….it. is. hard. And, it sucks. There’s fear, lots of fear, of “what will be”, the unknown , the “never before traveled” paths that we are faced with in life.

When we were first married, almost 15 years ago, we had our first argument as a married couple. We had just gotten back to Pittsuburgh from our honeymoon, picked up our car on the way from the airport and drove the 12 hours back to college for Iris to finish up her senior year. We pulled into our nice, but cheap, government subsidized apartment, unloaded the car, and I decided to take a shower. The full bath was right at the top of the stairs, literally the first thing you saw when you walked in our front door. Not only was the bathroom the first thing you saw, more importantly was the bathtub and shower. After taking my shower, I did just what I had always done the first 22 years and 11 months prior to that moment….I left the shower curtain open.

I realize what I had done…at least now I realize it. And, to many of you, you may also realize what I had done. But for some of you who don’t, let me gently explain the lesson I learned. Our shower wasn’t the prettiest. Closing the shower curtain after the shower not only blocked the sight of the not so pretty shower from the two of us who lived there, but it also blocked it’s view from all the wonderful guests that would be coming into our home, either planned or simply popping by. Plus, lest we forget, it would keep said brand new shower curtain, from mildewing prematurely.

Again, I now realize that this is an important thing in general, but especially to my co- adventurer in life. But at that time, it wasn’t a value of mine. Therefore, an argument ensued and, well, it just wasn’t a grand night. I didn’t/don’t always close the curtain as I am human after all. But after this moment,  I did become more aware that there was someone else in the house. There was someone else who valued a lot of the same things I did, but also had a higher value on things that I didn’t. I started to value those things higher than I had before. Yes, sometimes it was more logical to value those things higher (like mildew on a shower curtain), but with other things, it was simply because I valued Iris much more therefore I wanted to value the things that she valued. This is still a lesson I am learning, at least I hope I am still learning it.

I often wonder if change is difficult for everyone. I think it is. I could be wrong, and please feel free to push back if I am, but I think big changes are easier to take when they are abrupt as opposed to them taking a long time, and smaller changes are easier to take if they are taken over time as opposed to happening abruptly. For example, if I desire my kids to not use the same knife for peanut butter as they do for jelly, I can repeatedly tell them, show them and model over time. They will eventually learn and make the change. But, for those I know that have had cancer, when the doctor first told them such shocking news, it was a “well, this is our new reality, so let’s figure out how to live in it”  kind of reaction.

In neither scenario was change easy…but it seems that there are different ways of accepting and handling change. Wish I knew them all and would accept them, but, again, I am human after all. Change is hard. My life is in a big time of change. And though I am more willing to accept it, it is still very hard.

We as followers of Jesus, or the new proposed term, #commongoodchristian, are living in a world that is changing. This change has been happening for millennia, literally. But I believe the ugliness and power of this change became very apparent in this past election. The conversations (and I do hope they turn into conversations and not the mud slinging yelling they have been thus far) will not end today, nor with the inauguration, but for many years to come. In many ways, the American church is at a place where the Church has already been heavily engaged in for decades, if not centuries, in other parts of the world. It just seems that we in the States are getting much more of the spotlight then others have.

But politics aside, we are in a time of change, transition, adjustment, reconstruction, metamorphosis, or whatever you desire to call it, that we’ve never been before. I would much rather call it growing pains. They don’t feel well, they hurt, but they are a part of growing up. They are a part o your body preparing for it’s next stage of life. My hope is that we can look at this time in the same light. Not something that is simply uncomfortable and therefore we need medicine to soothe us. Jesus is the great healer, and if we truly believe that, we also must accept the truth that he does not heal everyone of every disease. This is not only a part of the fallen world we live in, but it is also a way of learning about him in ways that we may not apart from those aches and pains.

Growing pains are not things to fight against, nor are they things to soothe. We accept them as part of life and growing up…our body adjusting to the new reality that we are living in and preparing for the next season. Perhaps this time in Church history is the same- not something to be soothed or fought, but something to simply accept as what it is and a place that we can learn something about ourselves and God. Listening instead of speaking, being instead of doing, becoming aware instead making others aware of us….what would this time in history look like?

Every time God’s chosen people became comfortable, a massive change occurred and there were uproars. Is this no different? Maybe we’ve gotten too comfortable, to apathetic, to entitled. Change isn’t comfortable and it isn’t fun, usuallly. But it does bring us to a point of questioning why we do what we do and what will we do next. Maybe stopping and listening will help us to see that we are allowing something far dangerous than mildew begin to grow in our hearts and in the world God has called us to go to.

So, why do we do what we do? And, what will we do next? How will we behave, engage the world and engage the one right next door to us?

be blessed today

Photo Credit: http://www.gaggenau.com/cz

I have more advantage, allowance, authority, benefit, concession, entitlement, exemption, freedom, immunity,license, opportunity, prerogative and right than you do…and why repentance is a daily need for me.

I write a lot about self awareness, understanding the wake that we leave, discerning how we are experienced by others so that we may more healthily engage with the world around us. Why? So that we can be enlivened by  who we are in Christ. This brings freedom from the world in which we live and equips us to not only continue on this course of understanding but breathe life into others. Jesus is the life. Jesus is this freedom. But, I must admit, that there are things that I am still unaware of. Let me share how….

Many of you who read my blog know me. Be it from college, working together or the town I grew up. But there are still many who have no idea anything about me except for the profile pic on WordPress, Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. A blurb here and there, but that’s it. No more. Let me give a brief description. I’m white. Born of German and English decent, white is the color of my skin. I come from a small, very small “village.” Our town has only one stop light, and in the town proper, only 3,000 people. I grew up on a farm, about four miles from that stop light. Our closest neighbors were about a half mile away…all white. I’m an American. Born and raised, one family line came over from Europe just after the Mayflower. The other line came in hopes of a better life away from what Germany was becoming in the 1920’s. I’m also male. And not just any male, a 6’6″ (198cm) male. So I tend to tower over most people, especially in the past two countries I’ve called home, let alone my passport country. To some of you, that may seem normal and hardly noteworthy. But to others, that may cause a bit of anxiety or perhaps, a small amount of fear. Believe me, I’m a little used to it. When I was growing up, if I got too close to some babies, they would begin to cry at the large tower looming over them. But that was babies, not adults. And that was simply about my height, not about anything else. Some of you may have that fear or anxiety for entirely different reasons than just my height.

As I’ve grown in both age and understanding of self, I’ve come to realize that perhaps there is something different about me. Not that my situation is unique by any means. There are several, hundreds, thousands, perhaps millions of people very similar to me and my situation. But, there is something about me that I can’t see and have only come to realize in recent years.

You see all those descriptors bring up fear, turmoil, anxiety to various people for various reasons when I walk into different situations. Why? Because I possess a certain privilege that most people in this world don’t have. I have a voice, that millions around the world don’t have because it is oppressed to some degree or another.

Let me take my incredible spouse for example. I take up a massive amount of emotional space in our relationship. So much so, that she has to “shout” in order to be heard. Does she literally have to shout? No, but she does need to become more vocal and more blunt at times. I get self focused and therefore others have to become “louder” in order for me to take notice. When I get emotionally involved, I get animated. Animated for a person who is 5’5″ is one thing. But when you’re 6″6″ tall, animation gets big…and ugly.  When I start to talk with my hands, which happens often, because I’m so large, it can look as though I am super animated, but I’m not. Relatively speaking that is. Because of my height I tend to overlook others, literally. My quiet is shouting to those around me, and that can cause people to “cower” in the corner.    I’m a man, so therefore I am the bread winner. I am the one who has the job while it is assumed her job is keeping the kids and home at bay, right? How far form the truth is that?

When I looked up “privilege” in a thesaurus, these where the strongest synonyms: advantage, allowance, authority, benefit, concession, entitlement, exemption, freedom, immunity, license, opportunity, prerogative and right. Those words, in this context, are powerful and strong…….. and oppressive.

The country in which I currently live is not used to seeing people of a different skin color, so I am stared at quite a bit. Which is uncomfortable. However, because of this color, I am allowed to enter buildings, guarded neighborhoods, off limit spaces no questions asked because it is assumed that because I’m white, I must be important…more valuable than others who are from this country. Because of my passport, there are many countries around the world that I may travel to freely, without a visa or background check simply because of where I am from. When other foreigners inquire of me of what it takes to visit America I can’t help them because we do have strict visa requirements…especially for 3rd world countries.

I see this, now, on a daily basis, where as before growing up, it never occurred to me. Not once did I ever question why certain things just happened for me, until recent years. David E. Fitch posted recently “The 1st thing a white person should say (or confess) concerning white privilege is “uh, I don’t see it” and then ask “Can you help me?

So, I have learned to learn. I have learned that I do not have all the answers, that I don’t know or understand why it will be harder for my daughter in this world than for my two sons. I’ve learned that I need to try, as hard as I can, to understand what life were like if I was shorter, if I was darker, if I was from a country whose currency is so valueless it’s not even traded in the world market. I have learned to learn what I am, so that I can show who I am better. I need to learn what it’s like to be the “other,” so that I may better understand myself in Christ. So that I may understand the areas I don’t understand and repent for what my life has blinded me to. Did God make me a large, white American as a mistake? NO! But it doesn’t mean that because of this I don’t have anything to repent for. I do, and learning that every day, is what God is asking of me…of all of us.

And this is where my heart sinks as I watch the lack of dialogue about what is going on from NFL players refusing to stand for a national anthems to people being banned for wearing too much clothing on the beach, to wars being raged that are hardly talked about on international media.

And again my heart sinks.

Brene Brown writes, “I’ve learned enough about privilege to know that we’re at our most dangerous when we think we’ve learned everything we need to know about it. That’s when you stop paying attention to injustice.

There are so many loud voices out there today that are shouting things back and forth, that we as the Church don’t need to shout. As the Church, we don’t need to be the loudest voice in the world today….no, we need to be the constant voice of today. We need to be the constant voice of love, compassion, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self control, hope, faithfulness, joy and peace even when chaos is running amuck. My prayer is that we will stop shouting, and starting speaking truth. That we will become the Constant Voice that spoke the world into existence. That we will live the Word that became flesh. That we will breathe life into those around us as life was breathed into some dust and earth so many years ago. And that we will be the voice of peace. Let us be the bearers of peace, dear Jesus. Amen.

be blessed today

 

 Image credit: http://www.pexels.com

How to Better Understand Others

A friend of mine and I had a long discussion a while back about looking inward at ourselves. We were talking about whether finding our faults, taking personality profiles, mode of operation analyses, the Enneagram studies, genograms and other evaluations where actually important. And why we as believers in Jesus, focus so much of our time on them as opposed to “just the Word.”

Up to this point, there had been a wave the past decade or so prior, of spiritual formation and focusing inward on ourselves…”the journey within,” I’ve heard it called. Though I perhaps dabbled in it growing up, asking God to search my heart, and then ask for forgiveness for those things, it was never an intentional desire. The intentional, continual and consistent inward journey only began about six  years ago. I’ve talked about it before in other posts, but it really was a stripping away of falsities and untruths that were either put on me or I had accepted as truth.

I have had many conversations the past few years on the idea that we just need the Bible and nothing else, and all of these extra things were a waste of time, taking away from the Truth of the Gospel. Some have said those very words and, sadly,  weren’t open to the idea that perhaps other things may add in our understanding of Christ, ourselves and ourselves in Christ. I also used to be this way, until I came to a point and began to realize that there is a great journey both inward and upward in my soul.

Marjorie Thompson said in her book, “Soul Feast: An Invitation to the Christian Spiritual Life,” that  “One of the most precious results of self-knowledge is greater compassion.   The more clearly we see ourselves, the harder it becomes to  judge the weaknesses and failures of others.” I’ve also found this to be true. The moment I am quick to judge, I also quickly remember when I acted similarly and suddenly have more grace. I am human, so it doesn’t happen all the time, but I hope it has become more frequent (that might be a question for Iris 🙂

Looking at scripture we see the same pattern. The more the disciples began to understand themselves and those around them, the more compassion they began to have towards others. No more talking down to those sick, in need or children. In the early church and church history we also see this pattern. The early Desert Fathers and Mothers, missions to help the poor, sick and destitute all understood this concept as they practiced daily times of silence and meditation on scripture .

 The more clearly we see ourselves, the harder it becomes to  judge the weaknesses and failures of others. -Marjorie Thompson 

As with anything, this life of following Jesus requires a change of perspective from what we know. No matter what culture, social strata or color of skin, we all need to see life from  different perspectives in order to have a fuller understanding of ourselves and the God we serve. When we have a better understanding of ourselves, we then are able to come to others in humility, to learn from them and about them. To better understand them and give grace as grace as been given to us.

Nothing earth shattering here, I know, but a reminder to us all as I was reminded this past week as to why I desire to have a better understanding of myself. May our journey inward be upward focused in order to better love ourselves, those around us and our Creator.

be blessed today

Photo Credit: https://plus.google.com/105843274581171636167/posts

You Are Not As Unique As You Think

     You’re not unique. At least that is what someone told me once. Well, let me be honest, he said “You, you are unique. Your situation- not unique.” I am unique. Intricately made in God’s image. Carefully placed gifts, skills, personality and character traits, physical attributes and everything else. We are uniquely us. You are uniquely you. However, we think that because we are uniquely made that our situations and struggles we face are also unique.I wrote a post on being awesome, and how this new desire to “be awesome” isn’t really helping anyone’s self esteem. It’s not helping anyone become better people, better influences in their local communities. Being awesome is a grand idea, but how?
      When I started down the road of recovery, one of the first things I encountered was having to admit I had a problem. After that, the struggle became to continuously recognize that the problems I face are not unique to me and therefore I have no excuses for how I choose to react to them. To put it as Iris so eloquently put it, when it comes to struggles “there is nothing new under the sun.”
     What do I mean? Well, let’s take guys for example. Just one simple example. Guys, generally speaking,  tend to struggle with purity and sexual integrity. That struggle is not unique to John down the street or the guy who just got arrested for hiring a prostitute, it’s something that has been struggle for guys for a long time. David, Job, Solomon, and more struggled with that thousands of years ago. Or let’s take control issues-Pharaoh, alcoholism-Samson, grief-Naomi, Fear-Abram (Abraham),  blaming-Adam, physical disability-Jacob, being cut off from family and friends-Paul (while imprisoned), too much to do leading to burn out-Moses,  to name a few. The list goes on and on in the Bible.
     I find myself getting into those places in my life where I think that my issues are only unique to me. “Well, ya, I could do that…but it’s different for me, for my situation, for my family, for my job, for my ministry,” and the list goes on again. I justify this by thinking I’m unique therefore my situation, hurts, hangups habits, addictions are solely unique to me. And that’s simply not true. This mindset is a victim mindset. Thinking this way is like saying “this is the way it is because life happens to me, therefore it will never change.” And we begin to go down the road of self pity and simply trying to survive here as long as we can. I’ve said it before and it’s worth repeating, surviving life is no life.
     This differs from being an actual victim. Living a victim and being a victim are two different things. Being a victim is where you are totally powerless to what has happened to you. Living a victim, which is what I’m talking about, is allowing things to happen to you even though you have power to not let them. For a great post on living a victim, see Donald Miller’s recent post about the dangers of living this way.

     Another good friend of mine has been in recovery for a long time. He gets it. He understands compulsivity, addictions and hangups. I was talking to him one day over a nice cup of coffee, giving my long list of excuses why I couldn’t forgive, couldn’t recover, how life was going to change because of a big move and others around us might react harshly to our new journey of recovery. Again, a long, very long list of excuses how my situation was unique and no one could understand. Never. He called me on my crap, my excuses.
     He then proceeded to tell me a bit of his story.
“I used to believe my situations, tensions, hurts were unique to me. This way I could justify my behavior whether it be lashing out at someone, or hiding in my workaholism, escapism or shopaholism. No one lived my life and no one understood everything I was going through because no one was me. And part of that is true, no one is me. But my issues, my addictions, those were not unique to me. When I sit in those breakout groups on a Friday night after the Celebrate Recovery big meeting, or I sit in a Step Group with other guys working the 12 Steps along with me, I hear my situations and issues coming up. They come up in all those other people who are going through recovery along with me. One person in the group may not be going through the exact same things I am, but collectively, we all are. Therefore, my situations are not unique to me. Therefore, I have no excuses and justifications for my behavior and choices. Once I realize this (and notice how I said that in the present tense), I can stop being the victim and start living my life. Making choices that will bring life, not simply try to survive till I die.”
      I can find the things I struggle with in other people, no matter race, age, profession or gender. Honestly looking at them and myself, I can then stop the excuses and start living. Start setting up boundaries. Setting boundaries isn’t so much as keeping things and people out, it’s setting up space that once was God’s and giving it back to Him. It’s an act of submission, of humility. It’s showing that I’m done playing god, and relinquishing what little control I thought I had, to Him.
     But, as my friend mentioned above, it’s in the present tense. It’s not a “been there done that” kind of thing. It’s an on going, life long growing process of recognizing my own stuff, admitting it, and continuing to move forward. I pray that we all continually do this.
What about you? Are you able to find your struggles in other people? Have you reached out to them for guidance, help and support? Do you struggle with the victim mindset?
be blessed today
Photo Credit: image from the movie “Being John Malkovich”