I’m Not, But I Want to Be

We’re in one of those transitional seasons here in Oklahoma where it’s not uncommon to use the heater and the air conditioner in the same day. It’s almost like the whole world is caught between what it has been and what it will become.

That resonates in me on so many levels. This morning I find myself burdened about many things…the weight of walking with brothers and sisters through excruciatingly trying times, the loss of connections that slowly eroded without my notice, the struggle of trying to lead people through change they’re not sure they want, and the growing sense that, like Queen Esther, I have come into the kingdom “for such a time as this.”

The joys of so many blessings mingle with the struggles that come from trying to move things that never should have been allowed to get rusted and stuck but they have. The laughter with friends and family mixes with the tears of fear and frustration when I find myself yet again getting in the way of the very progress I am working so hard to make and wonder if I will ever manage to at least stop hindering what I feel called to do.

And in the midst of this in-between time, when long sleeves are way too hot in the afternoon but the short sleeves require a jacket in the morning…when I want change but not enough to let go of my comfort…when I can see that I’m no longer what I was but am still so far from what I believe I will become….

…in the midst of it all, I am seeing a call to more completely, more absolutely, more faithfully love and live and lead like Jesus.

That’s all. Just be like Jesus.

And, as always, the soundtrack of life pulls from my memory this song from a very long time ago. Go ahead and hit play and give it a listen while you finish this.

The words of that chorus express the cry of my heart:

I wanna be a man like You – but my heart won’t face the task
I wanna be a man like You – but I tremble when I ask
Oh, the light that shines in darkness
All that’s good and true
Take me from myself and make me new
‘Cause I wanna be a man like You

I’m not, but I want to be.

So, will you join me in this prayer today?

Recalculating…

I always find it humorous when the GPS navigation device or app says, “recalculating.”

Unless I’m driving…then I don’t like it much at all. It’s like this smug little person in a machine is saying, “Hold on a minute while I figure out how to get you out of this mess.”

But what happens when we get so far off course that our GPS doesn’t even know where we are? Or maybe we just don’t have a very good connection with the satellite. What do we do then?

Continue reading Recalculating…

What Do You Need?

What do you need?

Oh, I know that, most of the time, most of us actually need very little. We have the absurd luxury to say that we need more bread when we get to the last two or three slices in the bag. I dare say we misuse the word “need” more than we use it correctly.

But I am a needy kind of person (and that is, perhaps, the most loaded statement I have ever typed). In this stage of my life, the one thing I find myself most often in genuine need of is direction. I need to know how to proceed – as a pastor trying to lead a congregation and as a father trying to lead a family.

Continue reading What Do You Need?