Thursday, January 21, 2016

Outward Gaze

For a while I’ve super fed up while looking at social media. I couldn’t figure it out. I mean the eye rolling I do is horrible and the things I mumble to myself are even worse. I say frequently that it’s time to take a Facebook break because my frustration level, on a scale of 1-10, gets to a +20. And it’s not just Facebook it’s things that happen all over. I’ve had a terrible time trying to figure out why. I pray and ask God to forgive me for having a critical spirit. And then I start it all over again. Today while talking some feelings out with a friend, I was like DANG……I got it.

Because of the ministry I do, my eyes and my heart have seen many things. I’ve seen where people live. I’ve seen how they’ve been taught to live. I’ve talked to people who don’t have food to eat.  I’ve seen what is happening to the[R1]  children. In seeing these things it’s changed my perspective. There are things that don’t bother me anymore.  There are things I will not argue about. Don’t look for me to judge or point out that beer bottle in someone’s picture or the curse word they said. Do not come to me if you want to argue about church denominations. WON’T. DO. IT. There are also things that I’m not going to jump for joy about that are posted on social media. Mainly because we all (myself included) live such shallow lives. That shallowness makes me nauseous. We are out for ourselves and our family and others get our leftovers. We somehow think that we have done something to deserve what we have and others have done something to deserve what they don’t have. I’m not sure how that shares Jesus at all. None of us deserve anything. I’m not trying to come off holier than thou. I don’t need to do that….I’m well aware of who I am and things I’ve done. I have lived the shallowest of lives and it makes me sick thinking about it. Thinking about the time and money I’ve wasted on things that DO.NOT.MATTER. We spent $50,000 on the last car we bought for ourselves. Do you know how many people you can feed for $50,000?

Because of images that are burned into my brain. Because of the things I have seen. Because of the stories that have been shared with me. I will not complain about petty things. We all have down days. We all have days that don’t go how we want them to. But take a look around you every day and tell me if someone has it worse than you. Our hot water tank went out last week. We were without hot water for 5 days. It was an inconvenience to us each night because we had to load our stuff and ourselves up each night to go to my parent’s and shower. It was incredibly frustrating then I remembered 1. I have clean water. It’s cold, but it’s clean. 2. I have parent’s 5 minutes from me who have hot water and 2 showers. What was there to complain about? I know people right now who don’t have heat in their home. It’s 21 degrees and they have no heat. We can whine and complain all we want about how rough we have it, but I can guarantee that there is always going to be someone who has it worse.

What is wrong with us? I’ve been doing a Bible Study on Jesus. He lived with a level of humility that is obviously unattainable to us. Yet, we are still to model our lives after Him. We can justify everything we do to death, but that doesn’t change the fact that we are to put others first. We are not to be so consumed with ourselves that we don’t see the needs around us. The people around us.

I do not have this way of living down to a science. My shallowness comes out more often than I want. But I am trying to do a better job of being aware of people around me. I am trying to keep my gaze turned outwards!