Wednesday, April 3, 2013

the heart of the issue

Sigh... Another day. Wasted. It's well past midnight and I'm still up, and very dissatisfied with the way I spent my day. Again.

Ever find yourself caught in a vicious cycle that you just can't seem to get out of?

I'm in a few at the moment, actually.  One of them is that I can't seem to get my butt into bed before midnight anymore - not because it's impossible but because I choose not to. I waste time all day and then when it comes to the end of the day I'm exhausted and want to go to bed but I can't, because I put off everything I was supposed to do until now.

And there are other cycles - things that are way more personal and harder to talk about, but very real nonetheless. And like my issue with getting to bed earlier, they aren't unfixable. I'm just choosing not to fix them.

Last night (or I should say this morning - it was after 1am) I was up wasting time on YouTube (Blimey Cow shall be the death of me) and got tired of being stupid. I grabbed The Valley of Vision off my bookshelf in frustration - "I'm just going to read some of this." I thought.

So I opened the book and the first words I saw were "Christ Is All" - the heading of one of the prayers.

I read it, and I realized something.

All of the things I'm struggling with in my life right now boil down to one thing: Right now, Jesus isn't enough for me.

Don't get me wrong - Jesus is very much so enough.  I'm just not allowing Him to be enough in my life right now. I'm not choosing to believe this and live in the good of this.

And this is making even just everyday life really hard to bear.  Because life is hard. Sometimes it's really hard. And without Jesus, we're just not going to make it through.  We need Him. We NEED Him. And He is ready and willing and ABLE to be our everything if we would only let Him be. In fact, as my youth pastor once said, "Jesus isn't the best way - He is the ONLY way." Jesus isn't just one of many potential solutions to all the things I'm facing - He is the only solution. And not just the only solution, but the perfect, completely sufficient solution. He is everything I need. He is all I'll ever need. Why is that so hard to hold to?

I think part of the reason why it can be so hard is that there are so many things in this world that tempt us and distract us and pull our focus away from Jesus. Not just "sinful" things, but also things that God had made to be good, but we sinfully elevate over Jesus.  Things that at first seem like they'll satisfy us, but then they don't. So we move on to the next thing and then the next thing, desperately looking for something to fill the void, something to treasure. And then we find ourselves in a mess.

This is the heart of the issue: While Jesus is absolutely 100% completely entirely enough, if we don't choose to make Him our treasure and truly believe that He is enough, we won't be fulfilled and we'll keep falling back into sinful patterns and tendencies. We'll long for satisfaction but continue to look for it in all the wrong places.

Jesus really is enough. I just have to make the choice to believe this, everyday. I have to daily choose Christ. And it's really stupidly easy not to. In the words of Andrew Peterson, "Sometimes I take my eyes off Jesus, and you know, that's all it takes."

So tonight, this is my prayer:  Jesus, draw near to me, and help me to see that You are more than enough for me. "Thou hast died for me, may I live to thee, in every moment of my time, in every movement of my mind, in every pulse of my heart. May I never dally with the world and it's allurements, but walk by thy side, listen to thy voice, be clothed with thy graces, and adorned with thy righteousness." (VOV) "Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in Your ways." (Psalm 119:37) Amen.

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