Pain is essential to growth. To be open and to be honest of the struggles we have. To live a self-effaced life in God. To be in Christ. To be hidden. I am bothered that I sin. I am troubled that I like sin. I am bothered that those around me like it too. I am bothered that I do not believe what I read in the bible. I am troubled by Pastors and leaders who do not preach the Gospel. I am troubled by how fake things seem sometimes. I could care less about being loud or about hype or about anything that has to do with asking for revival or falling down. I believe in all that, but at this juncture in time I need the real thing. I jettison the hard verses that require sacrifice. I skip over the commandments to love others as much as I love myself.
Pain is essential to love. Without pain we would not know how to walk with God. I am convinced that we struggle much more with the verse in Romans 8 that says, ‘nor things to come!’ because the unsure future and the cloud of the unknown scares us more than anything. God is calling us to radical trust. To give away our addicted lusts of this world. I do not feel like powerful is in our vocabulary rather defeat is and shame is and guilt is. God is sitting in a chair next to my bed and waiting for me to wake up and talk with Him. He lets me brush my teeth and press brew on the coffee maker, but even so He is watching when I do that. He walks and talks regardless of how tired I feel or how out of it I feel or even so how much pain is living in me. I too face it like everyone else, but one thing is for sure Jesus faced His life. He faced His fears, His foes, His friends, His family, His betrayers, His enemies and His God.
I am driven to live like I have never lived before. I am more in touch with this pain on the inside for a world to come and for an eternity to behold. Like that Sky Full Of Stars song I think I see God in the Sky and in the stars and in the night time and in the train track sound that wakes me up every night.
Will I walk with You today? Will I be driven again not out of fear or obligation or religion but because of love will I give myself to You God and surrender 25 years of church to still say, “I don’t know much but what I do know I give to You!” I choose love and that love demands another..it demands sacrifice and it costs everything. This love of Jesus drives us to grow and to reach and to preach truth at all costs, really, no matter the cost. I am bothered by so many things but isn’t that a sign of love and transformation? If we did not care maybe we were never changed to begin with. Now that we change and grow and forsake all that has been unfair. I did not have the best parent we all could say or maybe you say you did not even have a parent. Pain now is essential for us to face. Pain at its core leads us to do something about the pain we feel. A man of God is the goal and that seems to require this love we talk about to live on the inside so real and so deep that all of life’s struggles and sorrows would never compare to what has been rooted deep on the inside. Driven is the hungry soul for more. Driven is the man that has love inside of Him. Driven we should be but shoulds is the fruit of a shame filled family and we are a family not driven by shame but we are driven rather by love.
Many could ask us as believers, “Why are you here?” I can tell my depression story(which I don’t want to ever elevate above another) and I can say, I am here really because of choices, because of people, because of real friends that have really loved me and have not been afraid to speak the truth to me. I can say that I am here because God has called me before I was born. I can say that my parents spoke life and truth and my mom for sure prayed like crazy and passed me down the eccentric prayer line of probably widowed intercessors that no one really knows much about. I can say that it has been a choice and it has been God’s Sovereign plan. When God wants a messenger He gives an encounter so radical and so transformative that it seems as if that one encounter with the unseen marks them forever. Paul was called and was blinded for three days but in that same passage it says that God called Him and told Him the things He would suffer for God to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles. I have not found any safety in God. This walk has been a constant push and a constant reach a constant pressing in. Some would say that religion is all of our effort to get to God. I say that when love grabs a hold of you then Satan really takes notice of you and for the rest of your days you will be hard-pressed to find a day where their is not a war.
Driven is the church in love. Driven is the goal. And without His power and grace we have no drive. We have no gasoline to even drive. Let us get a hold of God’s radical perfect and fierce love for us.