So many moments of "meeting together" this week. I am blessed to have a huge helping of the Body available to lean on, glean knowledge from, laugh with, share burdens. I am fortunate to be able to get together physically with many but we also have the telephone wires for those times we need to share but cannot get together.
Spurring one another on to love and good deeds. For this time in my life I am focusing on the "good deed" of really pouring love into my home through meal times and pleasant scenes, so that Dirt can come home, gain perspective and rest, that he might better fight the battles that he faces, that right now I cannot because they are not my place.
I am also focusing on the deeds of prayer and burden bearing. If that is all I could do, I could spend the greater part of the day praising God on the behalf of others and petitioning for His will to be done in our lives all around us and far away, petitioning that we may, as individuals and collectively, hear His wisdom, hear His will not ours.
The one deed that I feel especially called to for at this time but that I am really having a hard time with is the oft forgotten second half of James' telling of what is pure undefiled religion namely, keeping myself unstained from the world. Not only myself but the children that I am still responsible for. And helping Dirt accomplish this also. He, however, is better at letting go of the things of the world that soil us.
I, on the other hand Dear Reader, as you know, love to rationalize that just a little of this or that or one more hour of this or that really won't make much difference.
I have stopped listening to the news. My head was swimming with all the evil in the world. I am well acquainted with how evil man can get, right now I am in a spot that the knowledge of individual instances of evil is not helpful to me and makes it hard for me to get about my daily work.
The hard part is the "fiction" on the box. I rationalize that it isn't really real and has so very little to do with my life, that a little frivolous entertainment certainly cannot be all that harmful. I am not so sure about that for me right now. I don't mean to wag a finger at anyone but myself. The line is "to keep yourself unstained, or unspotted, and if you can do that Dear Reader and still watch or read much of the fare that is out there then I am no one to tell you different.
I certainly am not about to think that by watching "fictional" tv that I will abandon my marriage, throw off how I see people, or allow my daughters to play with fire. However, I have been wondering greatly at something way more insidious. Attitude. Snotty, self-indulgent, impatient, spoiled attitude.
Certainly not the attitude that my side board says it is time for, time for being last. I come away from being "entertained" with an altered mind set. I let whininess come in like a flood. "I deserve this that and the other thing." I am not necessarily looking for the materialistic things in my life to increase, but the admiration, respect or tolerance from others. I can be short tempered with others but they dare not be short tempered with me.
Ugh. I am not for a minute blaming tv, I am arrogant, critical and demanding all on my own. I'm just wondering if I should let my brain soak in the type of entertainment that green lights and even builds up those wrong attitudes and thoughts.
So I am thankful for my godly friends who are so willing to call dung, dung and to tell me to get off my high horse for my sake and to look for God's way not mine. I am thankful for activities that strip me down and take me to Camp Humble. I need to be there, not at Camp Self Indulgent or Self Preservation Conference, or Me-Time Seminars.
Right now, more than other times, I need to be at places, physically and mentally where I am nearly forced to dwell only on things are true, noble or respected, just, pure, lovely or beautiful, of good report, searching out virtues and anything that is praiseworthy and wholly meditate on exactly these things.
If my mind is awash in only these things, awash in the character of God, then the things that I intentionally or accidentally produce could not but help being a better fresher lovelier fruit. The love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control, would come with less struggle and self condemnation.
It is easy, really very easy, to do with out entertainment of the sort I am talking about, for me it is not just the tv, but radio, certain music, books... I needed none of that tonight, I am not an out of control junkie who must get a fix. Its when I am being lazy, when is it so easy to click on or open up and allow my mind to being sullied. I would rather spend an evening in the manner that we spend each Friday night and other random lovely nights than how I spend some of the rest.
Gotta hit the pillow Dear Reader, just thought I'd let you know what I was pondering. I am joyfilled that God has me in His hand and that He is willing to fill me with His wisdom when I am ready to want it more than anything.