Mere Christianity

But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him, everything else thrown in.

And with that sentence, one of the best books I’ve ever read came to a close.

A few years ago, I picked up Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis and tried to read it. But I just didn’t understand any of what it was saying. Maybe it was a matter of not trying hard enough, or maybe just a lack of maturity. Whatever it was, I thought I’d never be able to read and understand a book such as this.

However. After returning from Summit, I made a decision to use my free time wisely by reading books. And Mere Christianity was a book that had been sitting on my shelf collecting dust for the longest time. So, after much cringing inside and prayer for understanding, I picked it up and started reading.

Little did I know this book would so solidify my faith in Jesus Christ and my knowledge of what it truly means to be a Christ-follower.

C.S. Lewis successfully answered the major question about God that has plagued me my whole life: How can God give personal attention to my prayer, as if I am His only beloved, while their are billions of other people vying for His attention?? This seems a silly question, and slightly childish and simplistic, but I could not wrap my mind around it!  Lewis’s illustration answered my question.

“Suppose I am writing a novel. I write ‘Mary laid down her work; next moment came a knock at the door!’ For Mary who has to live in the imaginary time of my story there is no interval between putting down the work and hearing the knock. But I, who am Mary’s maker, do not live in that imaginary time at all. Between writing the first half of that sentence and the second, I might sit down for three hours and think steadily about Mary. I could think about Mary as if she were the only character in the book and for as long as I please, and the hours I spent in doing so would not appear in Mary’s time (the time inside the story) at all.”

God is not hurried along in the Time-stream of this universe any more than an author is hurried along in the imaginary time of his own novel. He has infinite attention to spare for each one of us… You are as much alone with Him as if you were the only being He had ever created.

And how INCREDIBLE is that?! Our God is above and beyond time.

I highly recommend you read this book if you want a better understanding of what Christianity is truly about and who our God really is.

Light Bulb Moment!

“Those who know, do. Those that understand, teach.” – Aristotle

I just started teaching piano a week ago. Today is only the second time I’ve had lessons with my students.

To be honest, I used to say I never wanted to teach. When people would ask me why I’m majoring in music, they would always start with the question: “Oh, do you want to teach?” And I’d answer with disgust in my voice, “Absolutely not.”

But I get it now. I understand why some people love being teachers. I understand now why my piano teachers loved teaching!

It’s in that moment where the kid just lights up with understanding; where you can see the light bulb go off and he gets what you just said. It’s truly remarkable. That feeling of “I actually taught this kid something!” is wonderful!!

And now, I feel almost consumed with this desire to impart all the music knowledge I have on others. Getting to be a part of someone else’s growth in knowledge is positively extraordinary!

Image Distorted

C.S. Lewis said: “Badness is only spoiled goodness.”

With that said, this morning’s sermon was amazing. It’s possible that I took six pages of notes… Anywho! One point in particular really touched my heart and opened my eyes.

IMAGE.

Just that one word. But so much more than that.

Our society and culture is so image based. We are constantly chasing an image. We spend hours a day working on how we look physically, then more hours portraying ourselves in the best possible image on any social media. No image we chase will ever truly satisfy us. We have an image problem.

Why is this a problem? And see, I always thought that we were image obsessed people because of our fallen nature, and while that has something to do with it, that’s not all there is to our image obsession.

Here is what I noticed: we are made in the image of God. Which means that Christianity is ALL ABOUT image. But what we’ve missed is that this image we should be chasing is the One in whose image we are created in.

So, bottom line. Being concerned with image is not bad. It’s just that we have this distorted, this SPOILED, goodness that we’re dealing with.

God made us in His image. Let’s chase after His. 

FOOTBALL! – It’s Tradition

Football season is HERE.

And I am so excited about it! Football runs in my Texas veins. It’s tradition. I remember as a kid a football game was almost always playing in my grandparents house; whether or not our team is playing. (And this is still how it is at their house now.) The sounds of a football game bring back childhood memories. Those sounds bring comfort in a strange way.

With that said, I love when football season starts. And am always sad when it’s over. But for now:

GIG EM AGGIES! WHOOP!!

The Civil War Right Here

Christianity agrees with Dualism that this universe is at war. But it does not think this is a war between independent powers. It thinks it is a civil war, a rebellion, and that we are living in a part of the universe occupied by the rebel. 

Enemy-occupied territory – that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage.

-C. S. Lewis; Mere Christianity

 

Summit

There is a reason Summit Ministries chose it’s name.

Summit: the top of something. The highest reaching point, the peak of a mountain, the zenith of a precipice.

It’s at that spot, the highest peak, where you feel your soul coming alive, being awakened. And that’s what happened to me over the past two weeks.

My mind, intellect, body, soul, and spirit reached a climax they’ve never reached before. I feel more alive to the world and it’s Creator than ever before.

The most fantastic of all though, is that even after coming back home, I still feel like I’m on top of a mountain. Yes, I might have a long way to go before I’m ever truly at the top, but I’ve reached a point high enough to look out below and see mountain beneath me. And this is a freeing experience. I am confident.

672

I have not made it to the TRUE summit, but I’ve come quite a ways in the last few weeks.

Servant Living

As His servants, we pay attention to how we react to slights and hurts, because we realize that wherever we are being self-protective or irritated, we most likely do not yet possess a servant’s heart.

-Elisabeth Elliot; Be Still My Soul

This summer has been a true test of my heart. I’ve been struggling with my pride; it has been vicious. It has roared up like a lion and for a while completely took over my heart.

But Jesus is working on me. He is teaching me that hard, hurting lesson of humility. It’s crippling, being knocked to your knees over and over. Yet, I am so very glad He continues to knock me off my pedestal. To know that I have a God who is so much BIGGER than I am, a God who will continue to redeem me, even after I fall. That is a comfort. And I trust my progress to Him.

With that said, I notice my selfishness and sinful nature coming out more and more in how I respond to people and situations. My response is of irritation, annoyance, and anger! Instead of grace, mercy and love as I am called to respond. It breaks my heart. I long to remember what Elisabeth Elliot said. I want a servant’s heart, but I believe that I am far from possessing one yet. 

So Jesus, work on me. Make me more like You.

God is more interested in our response than He is in the tangible result. – Elisabeth Elliot

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