Friday, July 19, 2013

Being Right May be Wrong

I was doing some quiet time this morning (between changing dirty diapers), meditating on John 11:25.  Chapter 11 is perhaps my favorite in all of Scripture.  There is no better place to see Christ's full humanity and deity on display.  I know the Cross is the ultimate example, but this encounter between Jesus, Martha, Mary, the Jews and finally Lazarus, for me, runs a very close second.  For me, it proves He was the Son of Man AND the Son of God - at the same time.

As much as I would like to exegete the whole thing for your edification, I'll save that for another time/format.  It's more than I can really unpack in less than 1,000 words anyway!  So, sparing you the long version - I'll share the short.

I kept getting a picture in my head as I was reading.  It was as if I was standing at the crossroads of life, with Jesus standing there at the Y.  He is waving His arms to signal the true way.  He is standing there, yelling at the top of His lungs,

This is the way!  Walk in it!  This way, sweet friend, is best!  This is the way to freedom and wholeness and joy and peace!  I have the answers - I AM the Way!  Walk in and with and through Me!!

It isn't that I choose the wrong on purpose - I just am so busy being right, knowing it and doing it, that I blow right past Christ.  I know what is best for my husband, children, family and friends.  I make decisions every day based on what feels right.  But in the end, even if the way I choose seems right, if I'm not following Jesus' lead, it isn't.

I had to confess this serious lapse in my daily judgement.  I prayed I would see and hear The Way and stop listening to my own logic and emotions.   I don't always know what is best.  It's a hard and shocking admission, but it is reality.  I trust God's grace covers my mistakes, but for truly authentic Christian living, I have to keep Proverbs 3:5-7 in mind at all times:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; this about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths.  Don't consider yourself to be wise; fear the Lord and turn away from evil.  This will be healing for your body and strengthening for your bones.  (HCSB)

Boy, do I ever want healing.  I want wholeness.  I want life - real life that will never go away.  That's what Jesus promises in John 11:25.  That is the whole idea.  Dr. Phil says it best, 
Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?  You just can't be right all the time without being lonely most of the time.
Dr. Phil said that in the context of marriage but the thought carries forward into a spiritual relationship with the Lord.  The more I try to be right, the less chance I give God to make an impact on my life and by extension - on others.  By speeding ahead of Him, I'm going to be lonely.  I'm going to be lost and in the dark without Him as my guide.  In being right, I'm going to be wrong.

By admitting my failure, Jesus can take my hand and lead me into life everlasting.  I can put the heavy bags of pride I've been carrying at His feet.  When I do that, I'm lighter and able to follow. It is that simple - just trade pride for submission.  In the process, I get all the things I've always wanted, even though it is very often painful letting go. I know I'm repeating myself (just follow this link to all the times I've mentioned my struggle with pride), but it is worth it.  This journey of faith, into further submission, is worth it.  Pride keeps me from freedom, humility allows me to gain it.  

I just have to slow down to see Jesus waiting.

1 comment:

Gindi said...

Ugh. Do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? I can't be both :( Again you are on a roll sister - check out Ann Voskamp's blog from yesterday, wow.....