Friday, September 22, 2006

Have I Built My Own Idol?

Oh Lord, I am not even sure I can get the words out today that I have studied and the convictions You have placed on my heart. Thank you for speaking to me so early this morning and for hearing my cry for help. Thank you for the confidence You have placed in my heart about Saturday evening in Candler, and I am excited to see You glorified.

Yesterday the focus was much on King Neb. building the alter and how we too build alters. Beth Moore made the statement that anything we pretend not to be is a image we are building. I had to really sit on that one all day. I want to recognize the images that I am building, but could not do it in just a brief sitting with You. So I went about my day and tried to notice the images I was trying to be or not be and then if it was before a statement, I tried to correct it as I went. Soooo.... I also was pierced by this statement, "if we have gotten mileage at being "real", we can become a fake at being real." I need to think more about that one as well, I have always thought of myself as very "real".

Yesterday was my son's chapel - he got student of the month. I remember thinking after I had gotten there - ok am I trying to be something that I am not. Am i trying to be the perfect mother. Even if I was - just in the nick of time, Godly ordained and for reasons of humilty - Elleigh screams out and is mad because I will not allow her to mess with Nathan any longer. So check - the perfect mom would not have had a child do that or would have reacted a bit less panicked and frustrated as I. As we were sitting there and singing praise songs, I was asking myself if I was trying to be more spiritual than I actually was. I think I was ok there. But these were still not obvious times that I was noticing the image building....

So time passed and we were making our way up to Debbie's office. We were talking about our frustrating 8 year olds and she just asked me point blank - Leigh, do you ever scream at your kids? Here it was - the chance to be real and not build a perfect image - one that is far from the truth and one that doesn't truly represent me. What was I going to do? Was I going to tell her that I never screamed at my kids, was I going to tell her that maybe just once or twice, or was I going to tell her that yes, I too have had my moments when my anger boiled such that my voice was way louder than it should be and I am guilty of screaming/yelling/loud anger coming forth from my mouth??? It was as if the Lord stopped time and gave me the opportunity to come clean before a sister in Christ and HIM! "Yes, Debbie, I too have screamed at my kids and way more than I want to admit! I hate it and need to get a better hand on that!" I felt a Holy hug and a peaceful thank you - Thank you Leigh for being real to your friend and for not trying to be more than you are - you did not build an image here!! Praise You Lord - all because of Your piercing Word!! I love it. My need for significance by others must become nothing and I become all in Him!

So this morning we discussed the other side of the spectrum. The worship of low self-esteem. Those times that we are so caught up in humility and priding ourselves for not thinking of ourselves that all we do is think of ourselves... Oh the war is so ugly. I remember not being asked to speak for a conference at my own home church. I was so hurt and embittered. How could that happen on my own stomping grounds? After all I have done for this church? Are they really consulting the Lord? Aren't those statements so ugly and self-pitying!!! I took a good amount of my day, many of my days, thinking on that whole thing and becoming more and more self-absorbed. It was sin and Lord, I am so sorry as I have said many times! But something that You allowed to happen (I seem to forget that when it is not a positive thing) took me down such an terrible road of self-absorption and self-loathing.

As my devotion said this morning, I am to do nothing more than to bear fruit, "bear much fruit" as it says in John 15:8,16. All things happen for His glory and in my reaction the fruit I am to bear is to be healthy and pointing back to Him and nothing to do with me. I, all humans, can not stand our own worship or to be worshipped. I know I would never be able to stand it. Lord, help me to have my palms up-faced when receiving a compliment or pat on the back - anything that is for Your glory and honor, to give it right back to You! James 3:13 says that self-absorption, self ambition is full of disorder, lots of evil, and of the devil. I am to seek God and Him alone.

Lord, you know my heart and my cries out to You. You know my prayers even though I am unsure of what to say this morning - words don't seem to be coming out too well today! I want to be found in You and not in myself. I want to be humbled in the sight of You and for You to lift me up - not myself. I thank you for Your understanding - Your ability to know my true thoughts, etc., but also that You "get" me when no one else may. Forgive me for the awful things that flood my mind. May I real to You and You alone!! May my life be as worship to You! Make me really love You. Increase my love for You and increase my belief. Thank you for the new engagement. Please bring more for 2007.
I love You!

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