Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Jeremiah 22 (NLT)

Lately, as evidenced by my posts as well, I am sure, by my attitude and behavior, I have found myself in a position of feeling like I just don't have much time for my morning reading and prayers. That is a horrible position because, when it happens, I feel like I am lacking so much. I was at a meeting last night when the leader spoke of what it means to be "in the zone." We've all heard that term -- usually coming from the sports world. However, for me, when I do make the time for reading and prayer, I can start to feel "in the zone" in my life. When I don't do those things, I feel anyplace but "in the zone". Someone else at the meeting spoke of how, spiritually, we should all be at a place where we always feel like we're "in the zone". I sort of wanted to scream "You know, that's a nice idea, but this is real life, man! How can I always keep myself "in the zone" when I have pressures coming from all sides? Pressures to do more and to do it faster. Pressures to keep my family fed, pressures to keep the families of the 45 people who work with me fed. Pressures to often be three or four places at once. Pressures to multi-task four or five things at once. Pressures to have my mind in 20 places at once and be able to easily switch between any of those places at any time! How can I stay "in the zone" spiritually in the midst of all that? I know that it is a nice, clear answer -- Jesus is the calm in the storm. Reside in Him at all times despite what else is going on around me. But yet, again, this is real life -- my mind is constantly pulled in countless directions. I get really tired somedays of being "the leader" -- the one who is supposed to have all the answers. Of being the one no one else wants to bring up a differing opinion in front of."

Okay, I unloaded a lot of baggage there (you can quit playing your mocking miniature violin now) and, yes, I can see the folly of several of the things I said ... I know many of the answers ... the better ways ... but doing them ... carrying them out consistently in "real world" time ... well, it's tough. That's all I can say.

Now, today, my reading is Jeremiah 22. This chapter has several verses about King Jehoiakim. As yoy may recall, my mother's maiden name was "Yoakam" which, as I understand, is derived pretty directly from "Jehoiakim". Note verse 21 of this chapter. Jehoiakim was not taking the time to listen to God. God was calling out to him but Jehoiakim was too busy.

Yeah, there's a lesson for me there.

  posted at 5:22 AM  

At 1:21 PM, Blogger Julie R. said...

Call it what you will, but I'd rather hear the authenticity of struggle than the platitudes I was raised on any day. Somehow "let go and let God" or "God is in control" doesn't mean much when someone can't even recognize you're hurting.

I think Jesus much prefers our honesty and our raw emotions. When we get real, He will meet us there. He doesn't want us to stay in a heap on our own, but He will come to us in our need and minister to us through it.

Not that it matters what I think, but I think you are being real and verbalizing it instead of stuffing it under the rug. Kudos for that, because most people can't handle their own emotions or the emotions of others.

Even as you turn your heart to Him, He hears the prayers that have no words and knows the anguish in your heart. That's intimacy. There's a time to just rest in His presence and sit before Him, rather than to work by our own efforts.

Praying that He ministers to the cries of your heart, and that you won't give up and stick them under the rug like some do. Blessings to you, Todd!


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Todd M


An ordinary guy. A wife I love very much. A great son. Wonderful friends. A metal roofing business and a sales training business. A loving church family. A few trade associations. A Christian school. And a four-pound poodle. Just trying to follow God and see where He leads.

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