Ending Thoughts — 4/12/18

As Easter service came around and lent came to a close a little over a week and a half ago, I couldnt help but look back at the short time I devoted to tracking my thoughts through this whole writing thing. Although the timeliness of consistent updating was all over the place, I first want to thank all those who stuck with me to support me in deepening my walk with Christ. Anyways, I was waiting on Easter Sunday for God to give me a little something — some idea or life lesson or anything else — in order to kind of wrap things up with this writing for lent thing and close off with some happy, encouraging words of truth. Here I am 11 days later after Easter and I still got nothing lmao.

I’m looking back at my first lent update and it’s so funny how different my outlook was. I quote myself “I want to become more mature, more adult-like, and overall just a better person for the sake of God’s Kingdom. If I call myself a follower of Christ, I shouldn’t be okay with the laziness and nothingness that my heart is submerged in.” Wow. So ambitious, eager, and willing. I realized that as lent went on, my updates sounded a bit more and more unhopeful and discouraging. In a more recent update, I wrote “God, You must’ve mistaken me for someone else because clearly, I’m not cut out for this...just leave me be in this corner because I don’t deserve to work for Your kingdom.” Why do I sound so depressing (???) lmaooo. The trend seemed to show that the more I tried to seek God, the more that I strived to do better, and the more this lent season went on, my hope and confidence looked like it was deteriorating.

H U H H ? ? ? ?

But strangely so, I think that’s the beauty behind this whole journey with God. God always seems to throw us in for a loop, in the unexpected. I think if the opposite happened for me this lent season — if I had really accomplished to be “more adult-like and overall just a better person for the sake of God’s Kingdom” as I wanted to — and I was able to check off yet another item on the list to become closer with God, I’m pretty sure I would’ve been able to draw out some sort of method that leads to results. An equation of some sort. Kind of like science; do something, get a result, reapply that something again and gain more results. But thank God that He throws us in for a loop every single time. Because if this walk with Christ became a science of doing x to achieve y, then the infiniteness of God wouldn’t seem so infinite anymore, but rather, a little bit achievable and understandable. That was the whole theme behind the fall of Adam and Eve, the fall of man.

Am I a little disappointed that I came out of this lent season not really knowing if I changed for the better or not? Yes, of course I am. But I think that’s okay. If there’s one thing I learned through this lent season, it’s this; God is greater than me. His wisdom is greater than mine, His power is greater than mine, His way is greater than mine, so I have faith that God will turn this year’s lent experience into something that will add to the Kingdom of Heaven. At the end of the day, my life is nothing but a speck of dust in comparison to God’s grand plan and majesty — a very loved, cared-for speck of dust in God’s eyes of course, but nonetheless still a speck of dust. What I’m trying to say is that God loves and cares for me very, very, very, very much, but in the end, what I end up choosing to do with my life is not as grand and important as how I choose to live it. I think I’ve been very caught up in what I should do and what paths to choose when given certain choices, but I think God pointed out to me these past couple months that He would rather work with a pile of mud that is dedicated to Christ than a pile of gold that isn’t. The how, not the what.

But what does it really look like, practically speaking, to focus on the how and not the what when it comes to living and walking with God? I think this is a very hard question to answer because it varies with each person and situation and it doesn’t have a clear instruction manual or proven-to-work steps like science does. So, because walking with God is not a science, it would be flawed to approach it as one. If our objective becomes looking for more answers and looking for the “what’s”, then we will only be greatly disappointed to find out that we will never truly know or understand.

I frkn love dogs. If you know me, I’m a pretty emotionless guy, but when it comes to dogs, I turn into some weird passionate, loving hybrid-Kevin. Why do so many people admire and love dogs? I think their most admirable trait is the love that they carry for their owner. No matter what happens, dogs always seem to have an unending love for the one who takes care of them. And a lot of dogs sometimes don’t know what’s going on in a given situation; they don’t know why their owner isn’t giving them a treat, why peeing on the carpet is bad, what kind of situation calls for barking, etc. They simply don’t know because they are dogs. They don’t know that their owner hasn’t given them a treat because the dog’s health is in danger, that pee on the carpet causes uncomfortable living circumstances, and that barking at the wrong times can cause a disturbance to others around them. And yet, despite not knowing all the answers, all the reasons, or all the nuances of life, dogs still hold an undeniable love for their owners. Even if dogs tend to rip up 94 pairs of shoes a month, even if they’re the reason why the white carpet now has yellow polka dots, and even if they mess up all the dang time, they have the one most important thing right; they love and turn back to their owners. They focus on how to love, and not the ins and outs — the what’s — of love. I believe that this is the best we can answer to the question of how we can walk with God. Not walking blindly, but faithfully, knowing that our owner and our God is someone who will always have our backs.

I miss my dog. This is Coco stretching seductively.

Now it’s time for the next step. Even though lent is over, let’s encourage each other to continue in our pursuit of God. Let’s not immediately fall back to our old ways just because lent has ended. Let’s not be discouraged when our owner doesn’t give us treats or when we accidentally rip up a pair of shoes, but let’s spur each other on to always turn back to Christ. There’s going to be more and more messing up on our end, no question. But let’s not forget that even when we sin deeper and deeper, there is no negative distance to recover from because as we entered into deeper valleys of sin, God followed us all the way there and he is always right behind us. So let’s push each other to turn back. Our God is worth it.

Pls pray this final prayer with me.

Dear God,

Sometimes, the things You do and prepare for me are so weird and I don’t get it lol. Sometimes when I look at something You’ve done in my life, I ask how that’s supposed to turn into something good. Sometimes, I’m so sure in my head that this direction has to be the right way, but You end up leading me the other way. And a lot of the time, I don’t even know that I can’t see all of Your grand plan as a limited human being. God, thank you for reminding me of how small I am. Small, but so loved. God, help me to be like a dog (lol). Help me to not get caught up in the knowing, but in the trusting. I want to be able to love You, not the things that You have to give.

As lent already came to a close, I felt like taking a break and just being on my own for a while, but I ask that You help me to be an encouragement to people. Lord, I cry out for those who feel they are far from You. For those who are completely new to the faith, reveal Yourself to them. For those who have been churchgoers for years but have not experienced Your love, embrace them. For those who know and love You, remind them of the Gospel. God, won’t You use Your people as a means to bring life to lifeless places. It stings my heart to think about so many people who don’t truly know about or haven’t accepted such good news as the Gospel. Put desperation in my heart for these people.

And finally, God won’t You push me to do all of the small things. When I want to do nothing but watch Youtube, won’t I pick up the Bible. When I want to yell at someone, won’t I drop down to my knees in prayer. When I want to make a decision concerning my own benefit, won’t I ask for heavenly wisdom instead. I know that I’ll fail to do these things so many more times, but God won’t I turn back every time. For You are worthy of my attention, my love, and my life. And as always, may Your will be done above all things.

In Jesus’ name,

Amen.