Thursday, September 15, 2005

Living For Whom?

I just finished reading Steve's blog over at http://jubalingen.blogspot.com and something he said hit home and made me stop and think. He said (and I quote):


"I will say that ever since I started living for something other than
myself I started to change. My perception of WHO God is finally changed. My
perception about LOVE and what that really is changed."

Steve started to change when he started living for God and not himself. As I reflect on my own life, I really wish that I could say I live my life totally for God and not for myself.

Truth is, most often it seems like I am living for myself. I am ashamed to admit that I am more of a selfish, "self" centered person that I would like to be. I do know that this is a constant struggle for me, but that only with God's help can I live a life for Him and not myself. I don't know what holds me back from doing so, but I suspect it is fear of some sort...maybe fear of what God might want me to do, fear of failing in what God wants me to do...I suspect the fear comes from satan though, and not necessarily of myself.

One of my prayers is that I become more of a godly woman, living my life for Him. Why is it that I seem to find it so hard to do this? I have the desire...but when it comes down to it I guess (besides any fear) I just don't know what I need to do in order to live more for Him.

Maybe I need to start with something like choosing not to watch something on TV that isn't very godly (not that I watch a lot of TV or shows that are 'bad', but there are the occasional things that I know wouldn't glorify God...), choosing not to go to a movie that I don't particularly agree with its content (too much sex or violence for example)...I also don't get to go to very many movies...maybe instead of listening to someone "discuss" someone else I should just walk away. There could be a number of "little" things I could do to start this process. I guess the point I am trying to make is that maybe I need to be more bold for Christ than I am, be willing to be laughed at or made fun of for not partaking in things that don't glorify God, or being heckled for even simply just being a Christian.

I seem to be making myself out to sound like some Godless person, someone with no morals or faith or someone who is 'wishywashy' or whatnot. I don't think I am, but I do struggle (as we all do) with this. I guess I need to put the focus on God more so than I do, rather than putting it on me. Afterall, it is God who should be praised, worshipped and glorified...nothing I can do or say will ever come remotely near to making me be worth those things.

What I do and say should be a reflection of Jesus in my life. As I read in a couple of blogs this week, we just might be the only Bible someone reads. If I am not living a life worthy of the Lord, then that will reflect on Him. If I reflect the Lord in my life, that too will reflect on Him. I have a choice to make everyday on how I will act, what I will say, and whether or not it will be something that glorifies Him.

I seem to be going around in circles and not making much sense as I try to figure this out in my head (or rather typing it out on my blog). It's like the answer is right in front of me but I am not seeing it...or I am trying to make more out of it than I should. No, I am not perfect - far from it - but I do know that I need to stop living for myself and start living for God. I need to do what He wants me to do, and that might be doing something that I don't necessarily want to do. I might need to step out of my comfort zone (I think that is a bit of a problem I have as well)...So, I look to godly men (like Steve) and women for guidance and help along the path, for examples of how to live for the Lord rather than myself.

Now, please don't get me wrong. I am not sitting here feeling sorry for myself or upset that I am not perfect. I am not angry or bitter that I am not "as good" as someone else, and I'm not comparing myself to anyone else either(well, maybe I am comparing a little). On the contrary, I think God has spoken to me through Steve's post on his blog. He (God) is wanting me to be more like Jesus, to love as He loved, to live as He lived and not be selfish. I agree totally with Steve in that when we live for the Lord and not ourselves, our outlook on life, on people, on situations, etc., will change.

So, after saying all of this, I need to start somewhere...but where? (just feel the fear crackling in the air around me now) I want to do this, but at the same time I guess I am afraid of what God will tell me to do...

Ok Shelley, suck it up and as the old Nike commercials used to say...Just do it!

12 comments:

Jennifer said...

You are so right - we ALL struggle with it. Every little decision we make every day reflects whether or not we are living in the Spirit. Thanks for the reminder!

BHGA said...

Shelley,
I love to read your writing, because it is so genuine and you convey a humble sincere desire to please Him. Not everything can or should be accomplished on a blog...so if you ever need a friend or sister in Christ to talk to....my email is on my blog...let us live us Godly women, reaching out to each other.Steve's words spoke to me also.
Blessings,
Donna

steve said...

What a blessing God is. So many people deal with this issue that has been on my heart for so long.

"I fear what God may ask me to do..."

That one phrase kept me away from Him for so long. What will people think of me if I profess all this love for God. I was once this person that was a addict and a ego-maniac... people WONT believe that I've changed, how CAN they...

and then I just "Let go, Let God"

I came to a place where I realized "my way" wasn't filling that void in my heart and in my life. When I did finally give in to that calling it was beautiful. I can say that God has NEVER asked of me anything at all that I was uncomfortable with. The more I gave the more He gave, the more I was willing the more He blessed.

God is love. Such a truth in that.

Thank you for your kind words and if God was able to speak to you through the words He put on my heart then really ask yourself what HE is trying to say to you..

I can guarantee you its not MY wisdom you are hearing.

God is good!!

Live, Love, Laugh said...

Shelly, you are so honest in your post. We all struggle as Jennifer says. But His word says, Where there is no Struggle there is no strength! I guess I should have alot of strength then, cause I sure struggle alot lately. One thing for sure, you have the right heart, the right attitude, God is molding you as you struggle.

Katie said...

Shelley - what a precious heart you have for our Lord.

Your words spoke exactly what I feel most of the time. We all deal with the shame of facing our selfishness and fears of what God will do if we let go of the control.

It looks like you are already in that place where He can use you. What great works you will do in His name as you submit to Him.

Thank you for your words, your honesty, and your heart. You touched mine this morning.

Teresa said...

Just love Jesus and it all flows from there. If you are in Christ, you will be changing. I have learned in my Chirstian life that whenever I have attempted to "change" on my own, it fails and then I end up feeling discouraged...but when I stay close to the Lord, spending time with Him and "allowing" HIM to move me, others see Him in me. Thanks for being so honest--thanks for popping by my blog.

Maggie Ann said...

It sounds like you are right on track Shelley. when we have the proper consciencness of God and who He is, we see our feet of clay and humble ourselves before Him, and He loves us so and constantly abides with us, molding this clay into a person that always desires to please and glorify Him. Thankyou Lord Jesus, Almight God!

~Deb said...

Hi,

I came across your blog, and found it refreshing that you have faith in the Lord.

In 'my beliefs' as a Christian, I really feel and have faith that everyone falls short, everyone sins, everyone is 'inadequate'---we are of the carnal nature, so it conflicts with our spirit. It's a constant struggle.

Your conscience is of God. That little voice telling you, "This may not be the best thing for you to hear, or watch, or see..." is basically ~your guide~----which is God. You are very lucky you have that.

No one is perfect. God knows this. God knows "your" heart. He knows your motives.

I think we are all self-centered in some aspect, because we look out for ourselves as a way of protecting one's self and taking care of ourselves. It's normal.

I hope that you don't feel like a 'bad' person because you watched some movie that was a bit too risque', or you listened to some gossip.

Who can throw the first stone?

Ease up on yourself, and know that Jesus loves you more than anyone could possibly love you on this earth.

God bless! :) LOVE your blog!

Saija said...

i hear the words of someone growing in the Lord ... no one ever said it would be easy - but it definitely is WORTH it ...

Lord bless you as you struggle with issues we've all faced, and Lord grant you the wisdom to take the less travelled path ...

Bonnie Calhoun said...

I hear what you're saying. I felt the same way for a long time, but then God showed me that by getting to know Him better, I became less anxious about my lowly estate. I would suggest a good daily devotional to get you started. It will help you focus on a direction. God will speak to you through the scriptures. Many times, even to this day...I will have a question on my heart and as it turns out, I get a devotional message that addresses my question. God is so good. Listen to that still small voice that He sends to teach you. God Bless. I will pray for you.

Lucy Stern said...

Service is one of the best ways to "serve" God. Help a neighbor in need. I have a 72 yr. old friend that I grocery shop for. She lives on Social Security and has a limited budget. I use coupons and shop the sales for her. She doesn't get out much because of her bad back, so if I can help her with something as little as grocery shopping, I do it. There are so many ways we can serve the Lord.

Look at what is going on now in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. So many people are opening up their arms, pocket book and thier hearts to help these people who are now displaced. This is one of the ways that you see God's hand in this tradegy. People are helping. They are doing things that the government can't do. It's the human touch. Listen to that still small voice in your head and he will tell you what to do. Guess I better go over and see what Steve has to say.
Thanks for a great post.

Zoanna said...

I echo what the folks above have said about your writing...honest, humble, down-to-earth. When it comes to the sin of "fear of man," I read a boook that has helped me alot. It's called When People are Big and God is Small. The line that sticks with me from is "Love people more, need them less."
Thanks for visiting my blog,too.