Am I the only one who gets herself into situations where I begin thinking so deeply that my brain begins to hurt and then I wonder why on earth I would subject myself to that?? If truth be told, I much prefer a child-like faith. I’ve said that before on my blog, that I often live my faith in a manner more comparable to a child than a “mature” grown-up. It’s not to say that my faith is immature but often I find myself saying, “if I think about that really long and hard will it truly change what I believe about God to the point that I don’t believe anymore?” If the answer is, unlikely, than I don’t know why I would bother taking time to think about it beyond a passing moment. Again, I’ll clarify that I do ask myself who God is to me, what he’s done in my life and how my faith has changed over the years. I see it becoming deeper but not necessarily more theological.
HOWEVER, I can say that I am enjoying the banter that happens at the sessions I’ve been taking. We did the third of four sessions last night and even though I had little to contribute verbally, my mind was racing through many different thoughts. Two things that have struck me and I hope continue to impact my daily spiritual living are this:
1.) When I worry about what other people think of me I am not engaging my faith! This can be challenging for most people but some of us struggle more than others to be liked. I have always wanted to be well-liked by everyone. For the most part I don’t think it’s been a detriment to my relationship with Christ, in fact I do think that my flexibility and easy-going personality has allowed me to be more moldable to Christ’s will than anything. However, I know that often times I do worry about what other people think of me. I get a knot in my stomach when I think something is amiss in a situation between my family or with my friends and I immediately want to fix it. I get upset and obsess when I perceive that someone might be upset with me. This new tidbit of knowledge has caused me to rethink when I should feel this sense of upheaval and what it boils down to is that if I think I am doing something that would displease God, then and only then should I feel the pit of despair in my gut.
2.) I think this is a greek or latin phrase (I could google it but I’m on a roll here so I don’t want to stop) that goes like this: “Coram Deo”. It means “in the face of God”, which essentially reminds us that everything we do is before God or in response to God. I love this because what it gave me was a vivid picture of everything I do! Everytime I get angry with my children, I’m getting angry in God’s presence. Everytime I speak in a sarcastic, disrespectful tone to my husband, I’m speaking that way in God’s presence. Everytime I choose wrongly, I do so in God’s presence. I know I’ve heard it before about how God is with us everywhere and walking beside us. I’ve heard the term “practising God’s presence” but this was so different because what I felt was not someone who was just merely there but God himself standing beside me. Like a real, life friend standing there shaking my shoulders, gently, trying to remind me that berating my child will not make him change his ways, holding my shoulders and comforting me when sorrow fills my heart, speaking words of tenderness and love when I’m frustrated at how my marriage looks at a particular moment. And at the same time looking down on me with a glowing sense of pride and love for this creation that is so imperfect and yet so beautiful to Him.
For some of you this might be old news. I’ve felt that too. I think God teaches us all different things at different times. Something you may have learned already is completely new to me and something I may have learned years ago is like a lightening bold of revelation to you. But that, my friends, is why I LOVE living in community and fellowship with other believers, because we are all a work in progress at various stage of development and each one of us can teach each other something new.
So to my dear friends if you see that I am slightly different (which I hope is true) it’s because I’m living Coram Deo and only to please Him, who has made me, and not man, who could break me!