Sunday, February 25, 2007

Thoughts on Life

It is one of those nights when I just can't fall asleep. I have been tossing and turning in bed for an hour, but I just can't fall asleep, even though I am dog tired. Why can't I fall asleep? Because I keep thinking about life.

I think about how life hasn't turned out the way I wanted it to. I am so far away from the life I wanted it isn't even funny. In some aspects this is a good thing. There are times when I love the fact that I am a bachelor, I am not intimately responsible for anyone else's life but my own. I enjoy the quietness of anonymity. There was a time when I thought it would be cool to be famous, to be a celebrity, but those days are past. I like being able to blend into the background.

As much as I like the single life there are times when it gets down right lonely. It takes a special individual to forsake the call for an intimate relationship with the opposite sex, and I am not sure that I am quite special enough. I cannot ignore the intense desire of my heart to have female companionship, to be married.

I love to preach, but to be in a small church struggling to survive was not my idea of an ideal ministry. This is hard work and it sure isn't very glamorous. I am not getting any calls to preach at the North American Christian Convention or any other conference. I guess not very many people are interested in what a guy at a church of 40 has to say.

You know what? Even though my life hasn't turned out the way I dreamed it would (I am still waiting for Rebecca St. James to come knocking on my door), even though I have struggles in my life, I wouldn't trade lives with anybody else. My life is good. So often we miss out on how good our lives are because we focus on the disappointments in our lives or the things we are missing in life and we don't take full advantage of the blessings we do have.

One of the blessings that I have neglected is the time being single has afforded me. I have a great opportunity to study and to write right now that I might not have if I had a ministry plus a family.

My life is good because I have a ministry which allows me to do what I love and that is to preach God's Word. My life is good because I have a terrific family and nieces and nephews whom I love with all my heart. My life is good because I have a roof over my head, food in the cupboards, and money in the bank. My life is good because I am able to give to people in need.

Today I was feeling sorry for myself and blaming God because things haven't turned out like I wanted them to. Slowly but surely through the course of the day He reminded me that my life was good. There are people out there that would love to be in my shoes. God has blessed me in countless different ways.

I encourage you to take some time today and reflect about the blessings God has given to you. It is so easy to focus on the things we think are missing from our lives, and the result is that we miss the wonderful life that God has already given us. May He continually remind us of the good life He has given.

2 comments:

Joy said...

I know exactly, in general, how you feel.

About 12 years ago, moving to this city was the IDEAL scenario for Mr. Joy and I. We were expecting the birth of our first daughter, we just purchased a new house, and were moving closer to family.

But.

Personally, I was so isolated taking care of a new baby in a new city with cliques galore that there was only one Person left for me to build a relationship with.

God.

Being here has been an experience that I would not trade for anything. God has used these last 12 years to get me ready for Wausau. There's no way I could be useful for Him with the shackles of anger and depression around my heart.

And now.

I am getting ready to symbolically and literally shake the dust off of my sandals, okay boots, and move on to the next town. I know the new city will have challenges and disappointments of its own. This time, however, my expectations are much lower and probably more realistic.

To God be all the praise and glory for being intimately involved in my life, and yours, Paul, to care about our deepest thoughts.

He cares about you, and He knows the plans He has for you. Plans to prosper you AND not harm you. Plans to give you hope AND a future.

I am still praying for you weekly, Paul. There is just One to be concerned with, no matter how many are sitting in the pews.

With much love and hugs,

Joy

Paul said...

Thanks Joy,

You certainly have been a constant source of encouragement. Thanks for stopping by.

Our Identity

{Philippians 1:1-2; NLT}   This letter is from Paul and Timothy, slaves of Christ Jesus. I am writing to all of God's holy people i...