Monday, February 04, 2008

Breaking the Bondage of Maintaining an Image

I realized that after mentioning, recently, my vision and hearing problems, and then talking about my back I just threw out, that I sound like I'm falling apart! You might be picturing me, hunched over, hobbling, squinting, and calling out,"Huh? What did you say deary?"! I can almost picture some of your sympathetic murmurings, "That poor dear, she's really a mess"!

Well, I am a bit of a mess. On some days I realize this, and on other days I am packaged up quite nicely, thank you. But it all depends on the moment, the month, the miracle of grace, as to how I am doing. I know that full well.

It's appropriate that this week is my next LIFE Workshop I'm teaching. This was planned out months ago, but what a coincidence: I am teaching a workshop called "Breaking the Bondage of Maintaining an Image."

Last night, I lay in bed, flat on my back with a heating pad under my lower back, watching a beautiful but somewhat depressing PBS movie called, Miss Austen Regrets. They depicted Jane as a woman who sipped a lot of wine, spoke her mind freely, and looked like she regretted almost everything while having her speaking that she did not. A bit confusing for me.

The subject of Regrets is a fascinating one. No one wants to have a lot of regret at the end of their life. I would not want to get to the end of my life and have regret over failing to follow God into every thing He called me to. I am purposing to have no regret, each day, in how I live, and in how I seek God. It's wholehearted living I'm after- and as James would add, "with no doubting" because as we know when you doubt you're like a wave of the sea tossed about, and I feel nauseous just thinking about that image.

One of the best ways to go wholeheartedly after God's will for your life is to give up wanting people's approval of you. But this is no small thing. We struggle with this constantly. For this matter, I look at the Biblical figure of David as my mentor. God allowed David's descendant to rule on the throne "because David did what was right in the eyes of the LORD , and had not turned aside from anything that He commanded him all the days of his life , except in the matter of Uriah the Hittite" . (1 Kings 15:5).

Yes, David messed up in that "matter" of adultery, and I'm sure he messed up repeatedly in attitude and sins of the heart. Look through the Psalms and you see him calling out for God to search his heart because he knows only God can keep our heart on target. But David continually longed for God's approval of him, God's blessing and God's favor. It was God that David looked up to when the world looked down at him.

What I look like in God's eyes is the key thing, isn't it? People will not always have the complete picture in mind. They couldn't possibly know all that God has called you to, or allowed you to go through for certain reasons. People will never fully understand the way that you take. But whose eyes are always on you? In whose eyes does it matter what we look like?

I don't have enough energy to go around fine tuning my image and wondering what I look like to others. I have been given, though, enough strength to seek after Him, enough hope of hearing His "Well Done, good and faithful servant" so that the roar of the crowd or the jeers of an enemy do not sound like anything other than noise in my ear- because my eyes are on Him. And most importantly, His eyes are on me.

10 comments:

Marlo Boux said...

Hi there!

I am participating in a meme and tagged you at my blog if you are interested in participating. I would love to learn more about you! Blessings, Marlo

LAUREN at Faith Fuel- said...

Hey Marlo!
You're so sweet to want to learn more about me. If you scroll down a bit and look at Wed. Jan 30th's post, I did the "Six Quirky Things about me" previously. Now if that's not enough info about me, I do have more to come, in the days ahead.

I promise it won't include any morephysical ailments. Maybe it will include my favorite recipes, favorite authors, or the five favorite sleeping poses of my dog Harry (He's much more interesting that I, but very shy, so I have to speak for him!)

twinklemom said...

*Hugs* Hope you get to feeling better...

I think regrets is defintely a form of bondage that too many of us often carry around; It keeps us from looking forward and seeing today what God has given us...

From Austen's writings and her autobiographies...I just find it too hard to think that she "moped" around with "I wish, or I want"...she seemed to have such a quiet and devoted trust in God that I think that she might have had a more deeper satisfaction then people today are comfortable with or willing to accept. Even when she was published, she showed such humility.

We definetely live in a fast pace society based on achievement and I think sometimes, we forget (and I know I do a lot of times) that God doesn't judge us on what we have or what we look like...He looks at the investment we make in Him and in our souls.

We have an awesome God who loves us without conditions or judgement.

Your post was very touching and wonderful and inspiring as always! *HUGS* Just hoping you get to feeling better...

Amy L Brooke said...

Thanks for stopping by and the kind comments.

I really like the way you write. I look forward to getting to know you better!

LAUREN at Faith Fuel- said...

Twinkle-
I feel old and like a train ran over my back, but then again, I've never felt better! Thanks for the e-hugs you sent!!

Amy-
The great thing about blogging is how easily we can start to connect with each other. I think it's the modern day equivalent of the tea party!
(one lump or two?!)

Kim S in SC said...

I spend more minutes these days searching for my reading glasses, or learning to bend my ear to hear better, than I would like to admit. But I'm like you. AS long as the "eyes of my heart" can still see HIM and my ears still detect the whisper of a Savior who says come closer...well, what else could I want!

Angie said...

Amen, He is enough.

Praying you get feeling better. Take care!

Lindsay said...

A Tea Party... what a great analogy!

Here's to more wonderful tea parties on the horizon!! :)

twinklemom said...

*woohoo* I'm in for the tea party!I'll bring chocolate cover biscuits!

*HUGS* to you Lauren!!

For me...old is when I have to explain to my neice what a record is (no, it's not a digital file) and how to play a record...*ouch* Lol

LAUREN at Faith Fuel- said...

Okay, the tea party has started! Scones, crumpets and virtual sipping is allowed!!