Come out with the new album already. I need it. Bad.
The Gospel is not simply the story of “Christ, and Him crucified”; it is also the story of my own crucifixion. For the Bible tells me that I, too, was crucified on Christ’s cross. My old self was slain there,3 and my love affair with the world was crucified there too. The cross is also the place where I crucify my flesh and all its sinful desires. Truly, Christ’s death and my death are so intertwined as to be inseparable.
God is committed to my dying every day, and He calls me to that same commitment. He insists that every hour be my dying hour, and He wants my death on the cross to be as central to my own life story as is Christ’s death to the gospel story. “Let this same attitude be in you,” He says, “which was also in Christ Jesus… who became obedient unto death, even death on a cross.”
Crucifixion hurts. In fact, its heart-wrenching brutality can numb the senses. It is a gasping and bloody affair, and there is nothing nice, pretty, or easy about it. It is not merely death, but excruciating death.
Nevertheless, I must set my face like a flint8 toward the cross and embrace this crucifixion in everything I do. I should expect every day to encounter circumstantial evidence of God’s commitment to my dying; and I must seize upon every God-given opportunity to be conformed more fully to Christ’s death, no matter the pain involved.
When my flesh yearns for some prohibited thing, I must die. When called to do something I don’t want to do, I must die. When I wish to be selfish and serve no one, I must die. When shattered by hardships that I despise, I must die. When wanting to cling to wrongs done against me, I must die. When enticed by allurements of the world, I must die. When wishing to keep besetting sins secret, I must die. When wants that are borderline needs are left unmet, I must die. When dreams that are good seem shoved aside, I must die.
“Not My will, but Yours be done,” Christ trustingly prayed on the eve of His crucifixion; and preaching His story to myself each day puts me in a frame of mind to trust God and embrace the cross of my own dying also.
I have to be at work in about 6 hours. I don’t want to sleep. I just want to think about how perfect you are, how blessed I am, how much I love you.
Somalia has been on my mind so much this week; I believe it is the Holy Spirit prompting me to fervently pray for these suffering people.
I am reminded of James 5:17-18, ”Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit.”
My prayer has been for YOUR namesake, God. Please, send these people rain. Send the help. Send them aid.
I think sometimes I feel so guilty for NOT going that I choose to keep my mouth closed instead of praying for God to intervene.
One of the biggest flaws in my character is forgetfulness. Help me not forget, Lord.
Here is a link to pictures that display a sort of refugee camp:
I do not endorse all that Rob Bell teaches, by ANY means. This, however, I find to be simply beautiful.