Archive for January, 2010

If you haven’t ever seen the movie The NeverEnding Story, I suggest  you rent it.  It’s an old ’80s movie about a boy who gets this book (I’m not going to get into detail about the plot, because that’s not the point of this).  In this book is written the story of a land named Fantasia.  The queen of this land is sick due to this force called “the nothing”, and she needs help.  A great warrior (and by great warrior I mean a 13 year old.  It’s a kids’ story, so it works) is summoned to find the cure for the queen as this “nothing” takes over the whole land, consuming everything in its path.  This is an epic quest, the task is daunting and the enemy is strong.  The warrior, Atreyu, meets some people (well, for the sake of this intro, they’re people) but is really only accompanied by his horse.

So, on their journey, Atreyu and his horse, Artax, run into the Swamps of Sadness.  As they trudge through the swamps, Atreyu dismounts and walks beside Artax.  Eventually, Atreyu realizes Artax isn’t moving forward anymore.  I would describe the scene, but this is the internet.  Check it out on Youtube 🙂

Ok, so that’s a really long intro into this post.  It just helps to set up the story so it makes sense.

The swamps are deep and murky.  There is despair that clings and coats us.  It creeps up and covers us.  There is pain and sorrow that we bear that can be so heavy a weight that we just sink down.  I hate to see people caught in the debilitating grip of the enemy.  He surrounds us, attempting to cut us off from those around us.  We sink down into the swamps.  He blocks the encouragement and the help of those who love us.  We sink down further.  He beats us down and tears us up, constantly pointing out our flaws and weaknesses.  We sink down further.  He shows us the hardships in front of us and reminds us of our past failures.  We sink down further.

At times I feel like Atreyu.  I am calling into the sadness, trying to compel a friend to move forward.  Don’t give up!  Don’t give in!  Keep moving!  I know it’s hard, but keep fighting!  You have to keep fighting! I beg and plead, I reach out and lift up. I listen and I pray. My hope is that they will listen and hear that they are not alone.  I am here, I care.  I have been there, I can help.  Take my hand, I am here with you.

At times I feel like Artax.  I get caught up in the problems, the weaknesses, the sorrows, the pains, the disappointments.  I feel the despair clinging onto me, unshakable and unending.  I look around and I feel alone and lost.  It’s easier to just give up.  Then I hear that voice.  I’ve heard that voice before, but this time it seems so far off, so distant and faint.  I want to listen to it, but what’s the use?  Obviously the voice isn’t speaking to me, my life is in shambles.  Why would anyone call out to me?  But there it is again.  If I’m still, I can hear it.  If I’m quiet I can make out the words.

You are not alone.  I have been there and I can help.  I am here with you.  Forever.  Follow me.

The great Warrior is calling out to a hurting friend who is sinking in sadness.  He is reaching out to help.  He sees the journey but He sees the end.  He sees the sadness, but He sees the joy.  He sees the despair, the hurt, the failure.  He doesn’t care.  He knows how this journey will end and He knows that when I get there, my pain and suffering will be over.  My failures are meaningless in the light of His success.  His strength covers my weakness and His life redeems me from my death.  His joy will beat my sadness.  I pick myself back up, take His hand and follow Him again.

Thank you, Jesus.  I cannot do this without You



Posted: January 25, 2010 in Christian Living
Tags: , , ,

I went to New Life OSU with some friends tonight.  I try to make it up there fairly often, just to see old friends and for a change of scenery in my spiritual life.  Although the campus church is similar in a lot of ways to Canal’s church, there are plenty of differences to keep things fresh and new.  Anyway, I just love hanging out there and worshipping with everyone there.

So, we’re standing, singing wonderful worship songs, when we get hit with a blast from the not so distant past, but the past nonetheless.  “Enough” by Jeremy Camp.  This is always a hard song for me to sing.  Not just because I can’t hit the notes, but because I realize that God isn’t really enough in my life.  It’s hard to sing lines like “All of You, is more than enough for, all of me” and not be drowned out by the voice in my head screaming “LIAR!”  God isn’t really enough for me.  How I wish He was enough.  How I wish I longed for nothing but Him.  But I am not content in Him.  His love for me is not enough.

I have realized that I put a lot of effort into things that aren’t God.  I am far too consumed with my ministries, my possessions, and of course, my singleness.  I am looking forward to promises I’ve made to myself, and get upset when things don’t work out the way I planned.  I want to have new gadgets, I want to have thriving ministries where people come to know Jesus and devote their lives to Him.  And most of all, I want a wife to share these joys with me.

I want…
I want…
I want…

I think I’m seeing a pattern here.  I also think I’m seeing the problem.  I keep wondering why I don’t get what I want, and why God keeps me separated from these things.  When was the last time I really asked God what He wants?  When was the last time I really listened for an answer?  When was the last time I truly focused on His heart and allowed His desires to be mine?

What’s keeping me from seeking Him?  What’s keeping me from making Him the center of my life?  Why do I fool myself into thinking that there are other things that can take God’s place in my life?  What can I possibly obtain that can add to what He has already given me?  What can I possibly achieve that can add to what He has already done?

Can all of You, be more than enough for, all of me?

Why I’m Starting a Blog

Posted: January 23, 2010 in Uncategorized

There are so many blogs about so many topics.  Why start another one?  I guess I just want to have a place where I can really ponder the stuff in my mind.  Maybe nobody will ever read these.  I’m ok with that.  I don’t really care if other people see these.  But, maybe my thoughts will coincide with what other people are thinking.  Maybe my questions will help others wrestle with the questions in their heads.  Maybe we can discuss real things, real joys, real hurts, real life.  Maybe.

Or maybe I’ll start this and never do anything with it.