“Daddy,” I said as I choked back the tears, “the rose-colored glasses are coming off. I think I am growing up.”
It’s the strangest thing. And I don’t know that I know just how to describe it, but life–and by that I mean the complete and utter depravity of humanity–has suddenly become crystal clear. And it seems to be everywhere.
Television commercials. Music. Magazines. Business advertisements. Politics. Everything seems tainted.
I’m not sure how I missed it in my first 24 years on earth. I’m not really sure how I didn’t notice how much the world didn’t look like the face of Christ. Sound like the song of Savior. Act like an Abba father. Serve like a humble servant. Or love like Husband captivated by His bride. Then again, I wasn’t looking to find something wrong with anything I saw. I wasn’t trying to dig up dirt.
I wasn’t on the look-out for sin.
I tried to explain to my dad, in an unusually high-pitched and scratchy voice, that my heart was suddenly responding, breaking really, to what it is that I am now overly aware of: how much more I need God today than yesterday. How grateful I am that He saw and saved me. And how much I want other people to know that there is a hope and reason behind every breath we breath and every step that we take– that our lives are appointed; riddled with divine purpose.
And not only are we fashioned with intent and intimacy, but our objective in “being” is the same.
We may look different, speak with various accents (of which southern is the best), and have different talents and abilities, but those very differences align in beautiful harmony to create a symphony of praise and worship to the One that made us in the first place. We were created, not for fellowship with God (cause God doesn’t get lonely), but for worshipping an infinitely worthy King who has forgiven our sin and forgotten our iniquity.
Ironically enough, this realization of being innately and intrinsically made to sing has brought about a new form of sorrow. With all my heart, with the very marrow of my bones, I want to sing praise… but I’m so disconcerted by what I see, what I have come to know about the world and all that is in it, that my praise has been transformed into prayers for mercy and salvation for the souls who don’t know, who haven’t heard.
I wonder if this state of desperation; this debilitating need for more of God and less of self, isn’t right where we are supposed to be– where we are to abide. I wonder if a certain amount of discomfort isn’t exactly what He had in mind, not as a form of cruel punishment, but as a form of discipline.
Discipline to show us where to focus–things above and not below. Discipline to show us how to live– in the world, but not of it. Discipline to show just how His strength, made manifest in our weakness, brings about His perfection and our righteousness. Discipline to show us how to receive His love and allow it to flow out of us and onto others.
Discipline to show us that we. are. not. our. own.
We are but vessels.
Our course has been planned and we have been equipped.
The winds will blow steadily if we would but open our sails.