Saturday, April 3, 2010

Sticking out Like a Sore Thumb

Thinking about how I handle illness is this house, and how different it is from those around me, I am reminded once again how I really feel like I stick out like a sore thumb. Here I am, leader of a little homeschool group, giving what support and guidance I can to other families, and yet...

I am so different! I have little in common with many of the ladies and families I serve. The obvious difference are that we don't go to a building for church. But we will court, we don't watch certain TV shows, we aren't outdoorsmen (a big 'weirdo' earner in the High Desert), we like the winter, can't stand spring and summer... The list goes on and on. And then add that we drug the kids when sick, it is just another thing on the list.

This reveals my pride. I don't mind being different. The Bible teaches us to be holy, set apart, sojourner, not of the world, etc. I am different, but I am supposed to be different. The choices we have made regarding homeschooling, churching the way we do and abstaining from certain TV show are all purposeful to not pull from the wisdom of this world. I am comfortable with it.

But then there are other things that set us apart that aren't so lofty. I don't eat all organic. I shop at WalMart. I am undisciplined in getting excercize. I watch too much TV. We medicate with manufactured toxins. Not as easy to feel comfortable or to defend these differences. These all seem morally wrong, too!

And that is the crux of it. We can't seem to get away from meaking checklists for being a good person. Checklists for being a good Christian! And while our minds know that there is only one way to salvation and eternal life, we love to tack on a few things to help God out. It is so easy, so subtle to fool ourselves into thinking that what we are doing is ok--good, even. But God doesn't need a Holy Spirit Jr. He doesn't need our help to mold His people. The one whom we are helping when we add burdens on one another is not our loving and forgiving father!

No doubt about it, there are good things we can do and flat out bad things we can do. But we must never forget that being good isn't what earns us anything. We've already done enough bad to earn hell. We can't erase that fact. Only Christ's sacrifice can do that. Our job now is to live a life pressed into Him who redeems us, not by our actions, but by His love.

So, I need to be comfortable with my differences. The 'good' and the 'bad.' The good isn't a check in my favor, only a testimony to His glory. The bad may not be as bad as I think it is. And when I am bad, that is only testimony to my need for Him.

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