This weekend has been a good one. I should be careful in explaining that my trip to Ames made this a good weekend, but not for the standard reasons. Usually I tell you how good it was to be in the company of people who know me, and while that was the case for the bulk of Friday evening and Saturday, the goodness of the weekend came by the Spirit.
I drove up to Ames with a few things planned: Anthem, a tea party (royal wedding, you know), a birthday party, some work at camp. My spirit was tired and I was grumbling about numerous things…the tough school year, how tired I was, being part time instead of full…anything that came to mind. I came to Anthem not ready to worship. I met up with some friends from Indianola (which was pretty sweet, as I might have sat alone otherwise) and turned around to see a friend that I made at Iowa a long time ago…a friend whose words and smile overflowed praise, joy, and contentment for God and excitement for worship and joy in spite of circumstances. The worship itself was accompanied by admonitions from leaders to worship rightly…not to gain favor or serve God (as though human hands could), but to ascribe to him the Glory His name deserves with our entire beings. I loved it, though my very heart was broken for the poor attitude I’ve been dragging around like a mess of shackles.
This weekend has included a lot of small reunions–at camp I ran into a bunch of people I haven’t seen in some time, and though I miss them while away, we don’t stay in touch, so the eventual questions about how things are going come up. In light of the things that the Spirit put on my mind Friday night, I realized that my heart needs to examine the condition of life that God has put me in and the disservice and sin I am doing to His glory by finding it anything less than satisfying. Hard, yeah. It’s hard. But so is childbirth…not that I know from experience :). So is running (bleh). But the result of hard things? Beauty, joy, growth. I didn’t really know how to answer all of the questions with grace in my limbo state.
The sermon at Cornerstone last night was a humdinger. While talking with a friend at the birthday party afterward, I agreed that I didn’t really track an outline so much, but things Troy taught from Jude were Truth where Truth needed to be said. Jude’s audience, the Christians he was warning to keep themselves in God’s love, were aware of the examples of Cain, Balaam, and Korah…so they could read his reference to them and move on, making the connection. I knew Cain’s example, but when it came to Balaam and Korah, clueless. I am grateful for the reminder to find strength, identity and everything I need (especially in regards to my attitude as of late) from the Word of God. I’m excited to be working through a minor prophets study provided by Andrew Hancock on his blog, Equip the People because knowledge of the scripture is so much more than just knowledge…it makes the reading of the Word and interpretation richer.
Anyway, I was doing stuff at home yesterday after taking a run (perfect weather, for a change! yay!) and an immense hunger hit me. It was about 4:00…and though there were plenty of snacks, had I been in my apartment I probably would have gone for toast…there wasn’t bread for toast so I took advantage of the granola which had been offered to me (with whole milk–meant to be!). I don’t mind cereal once I’m eating it, but it’s not really my pick. As I was chewing the cold cereal I thought about life’s circumstances in an analogous way:
Comfort food…a bowl of pasta or something that hits the spot is easy and enjoyable, but the enjoyment is fleeting. The nutrition value of my favorite comfort foods is mediocre at best…I love vegetables, but I’m going to pick the french fries. So much that I keep them around for a while :).
Cold cereal…not my top choice, but loaded with protein and fiber and nutrition (depending on the variety…let’s pretend that my granola was the best and most healthy kind and that the whole milk wasn’t taboo for its fat content…it’s all I had!) that have lasting benefits for better health. Ish. I’m not a dietician.
Though I think that I prefer the cushy, comfortable happiness-inducing things in life for their relative ease, it’s the less desired events that provide the most growth and benefit.
These are not very well-composed thoughts. Not extremely original, either, but it fit right in with my heart’s humbling.
Soon I’ll head back to Indianola and hope to rejoice in the circumstances because they are in God’s plan, which is admittedly more thought-out than my own.
Have a great, sunny Sunday!