I was in an email conversation with Pastor Kyle and here were my thoughts that day:
Our pilgrimage roads didn't cross, but came together, but like all converging roads, they came, led by the Spirit, via different direction and terrains of this broken road, experiences and ages that shaped and matured the walk on the path set before us ... and continues to shape for the glory of God.
I am not amazing; only God is. I am a fumbling and stumbling sinner and do not rejoice in that. In modern terms: "I suck big time." ... or is that so 2010 now. But I rejoice in my realizing this. I am not "good" (by God’s definition); only God is (Matthew 19:17, Mark 10:18, Luke 18:19). I can't save myself from my sin (the filthy clothes that Youth Pastor Kevin preached about last week) and I rightfully deserve the sentence of the death of my soul and eternal separation from God in hell for those sins. This is the first part of the gospel message, but I see that most people don't see it or understand this. It really is “bad” news, but true. I am not awesome; only God is. Most are on "the wide road to destruction" and do not realize it. They think that they are awesome, good and amazing ... saying glory be to "ME"... distracted and misguided by secular humanism existential philosophy that dethrones God and sets an idol there. God didn't just send His Son to die for the world, but to remove the blinders of lies and distractions, to remove the idols and enthrone the true God in this life. The Truth shall set them free (John 8:31-32); nothing else.
God sending Jesus to save me - that's amazing grace! That’s the “good news” of the gospel. It's not me, it's Christ inside of me that I (a sinful beggar redeemed to Child of God and serving the Redeemer) rejoice about, yet the Spirit and the flesh battle within, so I am humbly reminded daily. I do not see my glory here; I see God's glory. Our glorification, by definition, is in heaven. So, what on earth are we here for? God could take us to heaven now, but doesn't ... for a grand reason. Heaven is not here, Heaven is the final destination; this is the mission road. What is my purpose here? I look for His positive direction and for ministry that He intersects as I fumble and stumble along this godly narrow path in the race set before us.
You get me thinking ... what are the positive goals, what is the purpose, where am I going and why, who am I following really? Where do I lack and where can I grow? Taking account, and being accountable to God. The finite compared to the infinite God produces real perspective. Not renders immobile, but stops me in the wrong paths and redirects to His path to and motivates the walk forward with love, joy and peace on this discipleship journey to heaven. We receive salvation, but never arrive here, because the end of the road to glory is the true destination and the eternal perspective. Sounds likes I am good at it? No, its a constant conscious work, and adjusting learning experience with Jesus as the constant example and the Holy Spirit as the constant Counselor. The problem in the equation is "me" and the unconscious thoughts, words and actions along the way ... I lack because I'm somewhere else doing something else or nothing at all. In the Rascal Flatt's story "Bless the
Broken Road", there is a line that
says: "I think about the years I
spent just passing through. I'd like to have the time I lost and give it back
to you. But you just smile and take my hand. You've been there you understand.
It's all part of a grander plan that is coming true." Not my
plan and process, but His plan and process, so I want to constantly readjust,
realign and change to His methods and procedures as He methodically
revealed along this narrow road for my maturing as a child of God in the flesh.
So I watch, I listen, I read, I pray, I learn, experience and minster,
along this broken road to the Lord. God bless the broken road. Amen
In Christ, Brian