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Sunday, October 18, 2015

Not Just A Sunday Thing

I am going to try another new thing on my blog.  I am going to try to do a Sunday series that focuses on my faith.

Not Just a Sunday Thing.

My pastor used that phrase in his sermon this morning.

For some reason, his turn of phrase really jumped out at me.  I am sure he probably would have preferred that something else from his sermon have jumped out at me (since he was actually speaking about stewardship.  Hahaha!)

I actually did pay attention to the sermon as a whole too.  He spoke on Matthew 9:1-13 and Micah 6:6-8.  Even though I really was paying attention, I am not sure exactly where or what his point was about things being "Not Just A Sunday Thing."    He said that phrase and my head starting swirling around.   "I like that.  What a nice way to say that.  My faith shouldn't just be a Sunday thing."  Those kinds of things.  I did eventually bring myself back around to paying attention to what he was teaching, but I am still not sure how that phrase tied into his message or if it was just something he said that didn't especially have deep and powerful meaning for him!

Anyway, the bulk of his message was on the Micah scripture that talks about how we are supposed to give to the Lord.

Micah 6:6-8New Living Translation (NLT)

What can we bring to the Lord?
    Should we bring him burnt offerings?
Should we bow before God Most High
    with offerings of yearling calves?
Should we offer him thousands of rams
    and ten thousand rivers of olive oil?
Should we sacrifice our firstborn children
    to pay for our sins?
No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good,
    and this is what he requires of you:
to do what is right, to love mercy,
    and to walk humbly with your God.

I loved that my pastor pointed out that the prophet Micah was sort of exaggerating about what we were supposed to do in verses 6 and 7...sort of for dramatic effect.  In my mind though, I decided that Micah was being sarcastic.

You know, like a sarcastic teenager would have said it.....with an exaggerated eye roll....."sure.....we should offer 10,000 rivers of olive oil....."

Did sarcasm exist back in Bible times?  Hmmm...I wonder?

Anyway, it was a good sermon about giving of your best to God, in all things.  My Sunday School class dug into this a little more deeply and decided that it is really hard to give of your best all the time and that we have all, at times,  done a half hearted job at something and haven't been called out on it.

You know, done that "good enough" job with cleaning the house...or preparing supper....or lesson planning.

We talked about how rewarding it is when you actually do really do your best at something, and someone actually notices and pats you on the back.  It gives you a good feeling and makes you want to do you best more often..

Where my head went in this discussion that was those times when I do give it my all, try my hardest, give of my best....and nobody notices or cares....or pats me on the back for it.

Those are the hard times to keep giving of your best and not default back to just "good enough" or of the "What's the point?" type thinking.

I struggle with being good enough.  A good enough mom.  A good enough wife.  A good enough Christian.  I struggle with giving my best all the time.  I get lazy.  I get tired.

I even struggle with a basic Christian thing....prayer.  I know all about talking to God like he is your best friend, praying without ceasing and those verses about whenever two or more are gathered and all of that stuff.

Prayer is a good thing.  I know I should do it every day, every night, every moment.

You know what I mean, right?

I feel better when I pray.  I feel like I am really doing something when I pray for others.  For struggles that my friends and family are going through.  When I am trying to make a decision and really, really want to seek the Lord's guidance on what we should do.

But, sometimes....well....most times.....I am just too busy to offer more than a quick, "Lord, please help so and so....".

And, I will be honest here, when I go to bed at night, I just want to go to sleep, because I am tired.

I know that my life is blessed and that I have been blessed over and over again with my family, my husband, my beautiful children, my ability to homeschool the kids, the gift of being able to "just" be a stay at home mom when we moved to Georgia..

Blessing after blessing after blessing.

And yet, I still stumble into bed most nights and hope that Rainman isn't interested in anything other than sleep and that I can just roll over and go to sleep.  Many, many times, I don't even offer God and obligatory "Thanks for a good day" kind of prayer.

If I am worried about something or scared about something, I do seem to be able to find time to send my pleas up to God.

But, most times I just sleep.

That isn't giving of my best, is it?

That is using everything I have up and if I really need something, or if I have anything left over, then giving that to God.

Uggg.....if I think about that in a human to human am a total jerk.  If this were a human to human relationship, I wouldn't want to be with that person. That is the kind of person that I warn my children against!

So, I need to figure out a way to give God my best....first.

For me,  I guess that means spending time with him right away in the morning, when I am fresh and before I have been sucked dry by this blessed life I am leading.

That sounds both easy and scary to me at the same time.  Pressure....even though I know it is the right thing for me to a a a a broken sinner.  Which I am.  I am a broken sinner.  I can't just, as someone in my Sunday School class said....give God the top crust off my pie and move on.

We had been talking about tithing and giving your 10% to God.  Someone had said a former pastor years and years ago had recommended that you have your apple pie and you just cut off the top crust and give that to God right away.  You don't know what you are missing.  You still have a whole pie to yourself.  That kind of thing.

But, none of us really liked that thought process.  Because that way, God wouldn't get any of the warm, juicy fruit. Just the crust - which, let's be honest here isn't always light and fluffy and yummy. Sometimes, it is dry and tasteless, or kind of pasty and chokes you.....especially without the fruit.  Just the crust wouldn't be the best part of the pie.

I don't want to give God the dry, tasteless parts of my life.  I want Him to be present in all of it.  I want Him to get the best of me, since this life I am living is all because of Him....and it is Not Just a Sunday Thing.

You know?

So, I am going to take my own advice on eating the elephant one bite at a time and just aim for 5 minutes each morning that I really and truly just spend with God.  Hopefully, it will turn into more and hopefully I will actually crave that time spent with Him.  And, hopefully, in those 5 minutes, I will actually give of my best to Him, which will then be able to be turned back around to all areas of my life.


Want to join me?

Want to commit to spending your first 5 minutes (after you have peed and all that stuff) giving of your best to God?