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Glad and Generous

Journal Entry // May 10, 2021

And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,

Acts 2:46 ESV

I am so very tired of this struggle. I am so tired of feeling down and miserable. I just want God to make an instantaneous change in my heart and put it into alignment with him. Why do I have to fight and struggle each and every moment? Why do I continue to see the light of Christ shining within my heart and soul, but then hide back in the shadows. The shadows of disobedience that still lurk within. These shadows call out to me. They lie to me. They whisper into my head those words that entrap me once again. I am so easily persuaded to be led off the good and right path.

Everything is wrapped up in the lies that I continue to tell myself and the lies that I want to believe and make true. Lies that call me to place my hope in anything other than Jesus. Lies that promise the same reward that I know is going to fail.

I am afraid that I am losing this fight. I am afraid that I have lost this fight at times. The call to give up is so very strong and alluring. The offer of apathy and emptiness. A life where there is no feeling or emotion. A life where nothing really matters to me and therefore cannot hurt me. A life where I am purposefully pushing away those things that are most meaningful to me.

I have been hurt by deep within my heart. Deep, deep within my heart. There are gaping wounds that I won’t allow to heal. Pieces of myself that I don’t want to deal with on any sort of real level. So I put on this mask of patience and calmness so nobody really sees the turmoil within. But I see the turmoil. I feel the turmoil. It sometimes reaches a point where I ride the waves of the turmoil and lose myself. I lose all sense of who I truly am. Who I was created to be.

But I know this is not the answer. I know that I am meant for glorious things. Glorious things that are at odds with the world around me. Glorious things that seem at odds with the people that I am closest to. These glorious things are calling me to a life of being poor in spirit, mourning, meekness, hunger and thirst for righteousness, merciful, pure in heart, peacemaker, and being persecuted. These glorious things call me to swim upstream from the world and from the everyday Christianity that is lived by most. 

A man after God’s own heart… Is this what I truly want and desire for my life? Yes. I truly want this to be true deep within my soul. I want my Father to look upon me and tell me that he is pleased with me. I long for this personal deep intimate relationship with my Father. Yet, I keep seeking a substitute. I keep seeking this pleasure and intimacy in so many other places. All the while knowing that I will only ever find it in Jesus. That I must take up his yoke and his burden. I must lay aside my own striving and misconceptions. I must cast aside my worldly ambition. My measuring rod that is balanced with the way of the world instead of faithfulness to the Lord.

It was so much easier to convince myself that I was doing this when I worked in ministry. It was so easy to deceive myself into believing that because I had given up so many worldly aspects for a life of ministry, I was therefore following Christ as he desires. It is only now that I really truly see that my heart was never fully engaged with Christ. I transferred my worldly desires into worldly ministry desires. What was missing? I was missing the entire point of everything. My desire should always be set on Christ alone. This is what Paul means by learning to be content. He could be content with what was brought before him in this life, because all he needed was Jesus. All he needed was that constant lifeline of intimacy with his risen Savior. This is what I want. Lord, show me the path.

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