God designed men and women differently and I am grateful for that. And though I am not out to stereotype us guys, there are certain tendencies that I see in us that are generally true.
For example, I tend to see a problem and want to fix it. And I have had to learn some awkward lessons with my wife when she tells me something that is going on and I immediately jump in with three potential solutions, all of which will remedy the trouble at hand. The real issue, though, was that my wife just needed someone to listen to her. Oops. Read that one wrong. I have learned some helpful lessons from that.
Why is it my spiritual growth seems so confusing or ambiguous at times? Is it because God enjoys being mysterious, like playing a game of Marco Polo, where I blindly wander and shout out, “God, what are you doing in my life?” and hoping He says something like, “You’re getting warm!”
Photo by Maja Petric on Unsplash
The problem is not on God’s end though it seems easier to just ascribe blame. The issue is that I am viewing God’s growth plan for me through the wrong lens – my own. If the primary way of instructing believers is His word, which it is, then it would be to my great advantage to take the time to figure it out so that I can see the bigger picture of how God desires to grow me.
My wife and I recently had the opportunity to head to Denver to see our kiddos, grandkiddos, and celebrate the first birthday of our youngest grandson. I L-O-V-E this grandparent gig. My two little dudes are da bomb. And when I go there, it is constant activity until they go down for their naps or head to bed for the night.
My oldest grandson, who is 2, asked me multiple times, “Gampa, go with me to pway room to do puzzle?” And off we’d go to do his 24-piece Pete the Cat puzzle or 24-piece something-involving-a-furry-caterpillar-and-a-big-moon puzzle. Why do I know the exact number of pieces? Because we did each of them at least 10 times (exaggeration effects not in use).
I don’t know how much you follow various sports hype, but there is one that I have followed off and on about Lonzo Ball. Ball was a freshman phenom point guard for UCLA last year and opted for the NBA draft. What became more of an overshadowing story were the antics of his father, LaVar Ball.
Let’s just say LaVar has a propensity to talk. About himself. A lot. And about the amazing athletic abilities of his three sons. He has used his notoriety to make bold claims in promoting his kids as well as saying he could have beaten Michael Jordan in 1-on-1.
Please. Be. Quiet.
I recently returned from a church missions trip to Guatemala.
Epic adventures. Lovely people.
We went for a week, were busy from dawn through late evening, bonded as a team, and saw that the gospel is very much alive…everywhere. One of the most impacting takeaways for me, and I would suspect for our team, was the modifying, shaping, tearing down, and rebuilding of perspective.
Why does it seem like finding God’s will is so difficult for me at times?
It reminds me of the scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. It’s Indy against the Nazis as both are seeking the Holy Grail, the legendary cup that is believed to grant eternal life. They end up in a cavern where the cup is guarded by an old knight. Donovan, the bad dude, has a gun on Indy and wants to drink from the grail first. The problem is that there is a table full of cups…and only one is the Holy Grail.
961. That is the number of “friends” I have on Facebook. To be honest, I am not even sure how I collected that many. I wonder if Mark Zuckerberg is going to post some sort of feel-good emoji on my home page once I reach 1,000?
Probably not. But perhaps I will go out and treat myself to some chocolate-infused latte of accomplishment.
Change is a funny thing sometimes.
Take losing weight, for example. As I eased into my late forties and now early fifties, I began to notice that my metabolism seemed to be coming to a screeching halt.
I have noticed something about myself as a guy that I think other guys can resonate with as well. And I find it troubling.
It’s the misconception that the battles I face and the brokenness I experience are unique to me. I think of it this way. As I view my own life and the emotional and spiritual discouragements that I encounter, I am looking for solutions. Meaning, I want my problems fixed. I want to cease doing whatever is tripping me up; I also want to change and add new habits that are going to propel me forward into certain victory.
College days. Some good times in life and a good time for my life.
I look back at what I thought I knew about life then and it makes me cringe. I envisioned I had a good perspective, but the decades now behind me remind that I was not as mature about life as I thought.