Friday, January 09, 2009

Worth Doing

This is an account of my efforts to put into action what I learn while reading the Bible. This is an account of my journey to become closer to God.

I have been a faithful donor to a number of non-profit organizations over the years, but seldom gave much to a church. I can’t really offer an explanation other than it was yet another of my failures. What excuses I could muster for you now would be flimsy at best.

However, my heart became less hardened against giving money to the church a few years ago, but even then I gave less than I should have, and never first fruits. Slowly, though, my heart became even less hardened and soon Jill and I were giving first fruits and eventually we neared the tenth we were meant to give.

About eight months ago I woke up and felt a pressing need to give a tenth and then some. We reviewed our budget, reduced what we allocated to lifestyle expenses, and began giving as much as we were called to do in the first place. In addition, feeling the guilt of having not given as we should have in the past, I began to do volunteer work. Today I participate in three ministries through our church, and next week I begin a 12 week training course to prepare for the fourth ministry I’ll devote myself to.

Yet, as happy as I was about the high priority we had finally given to making our offerings, and especially pleased with the joy I’ve found in the volunteer work, I still felt as though something was not quite right.

And then a few days ago I read Matthew 5:23 : “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the alter and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the alter. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.”

It was then when I realized that even though I have forgiven my former adversaries, I have done so silently or confessing it only to Jill. I have not sought to create reconciliation face to face with my offenders or those whom I have offended.

Once again, I realized I have been standing in the darkness, at least with one foot in the shadows while the other was in the light. It can only mean that the good work I’ve been doing in the light is dimmed by that part of me that remains in the shadows.

Writing of my faith journey on this blog is very public, yet it is very safe. It is easy as I sit here alone at my desk with time to think about the words I choose to express how I feel and what I’m thinking. It is also somewhat private, even secretive, unless those with whom I need to be reconciled are reading what I’m writing. I’m sure most, if not all, are not.

So you see, I have more work to do (I’m not surprised, to be candid). It seems each day after I’ve competed my Bible reading I realize just how much more work I have to do to truly live the Word. But it is work worth doing, isn’t it? Of course it is.

May my gifts become more pleasing to God as I go out to do what he has asked of me.

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog, and please pray for me and my family. Now go out and hug somebody!

1 comment:

Ghost said...

I think your public journey is more than what you think it is and does more than what you think. I think your writings help others focus on the right path and your words are like a beacon that draws others to the them. My beliefs may not run parallel with your completely but I do so enjoy reading about your journey and I learn from it too.