I just got done taking care of the beautiful and the shot - Mahto kids. The parents are unfortunately down with the stomach flu. (Please pray for the Mahtos.) As I decompress, I wanted to be able to put my thoughts on paper - so here it is. I have been really blessed to be here at Irvingboro, it's so much better than being homeless. *laughs* I am also definitely indebted to everyone who has been gracious to me and obedient to the Lord's instruction to bless me. That has kept me fed all these weeks.
Not too long ago, a good friend of mine told me, "Please don't be offended. But I think you're too apologetic and gullible lately." I did not disagree with him, because it was true. Lately, I've felt an increase in social anxiety and I was trying to figure out where it was stemming from. I've made a lot of communication errors on the way -- and have confused people. I guess there's nothing more to say than this: that in trying to figure this awkwardness out, I have not been able to socially function well. And I can only hope for empathy/grace/forgiveness/
Tell me what's going on inside of me
I despise my own behavior
This only serves to confirm my suspicions
That I'm still a man in need of a Savior (DC Talk)
It finally dawned on me what this was all about. It started when I shared with people about my situation with my employment card. I was frustrated about : not being able to take care of myself, doubting that this was what God wanted for me, my tons of foolish pride, broken ideals/expectations and the queasiness I was getting from the rapid change in plans, lifestyle, and routine because of it.
I began to feel insecure around people who knew what I was going through, feeling overtly ashamed about my situation of not being able to take care of myself, became apologetic to people with stronger personalities -- not being able to withstand "intimidation" as my confidence was pretty much shot due to my dependency. I also knew I was being irrational emotionally, but it's just one of those things that always seem to wrestle for your attention. (Thanks, Brittany and HuiMin for spiritual discussion about insecurities.)
Realization: I define myself by how much money I have/am getting.
My heart sank as I typed that.
Then begins the over-analytical phase. God, I truly need to learn how to take my imagination/thoughts captive!! What utter rubbish the carnal mind spews. I hate that I'm bound by so many mechanisms that trigger or shut down social functions! I read Romans 12 again today. Do not be conformed, but be transformed -- by the renewing of your mind! The battle against self is the most brutal of all. Paul wasn't kidding when he talked about spiritual warfare and putting on the armor of God (Ephesians 6). (Thanks, DJ for the spiritual counsel on the way to Fargo.)
On top of that, I've been transitioning into adulthood. Sure, I've been an adult by age -- but definitely not in lifestyle. Many of my closest confidantes are gone, moved away or have moved on to a different phase of life. Soon, my college student friends will be caught up with school, and with the new students that will come in (inevitable and expected). Suddenly, the need to build a new guild of like-minded adult friends becomes urgent. Who do I keep accountable to? Or rather, who can I trust to keep accountable to? (Thanks, Rob.) Learning to deal with broken pride and expectations have been the order of the day. I have to remember that this will prove to be invaluable to me in future. I have to keep pushing through this oddness.
Because the conclusion -- or rather, the introduction -- to all of this, (brace yourself for the cliche) is not about me, and it's never going to be about me. This life I have is God's project. The ministries I have had the opportunity to serve and participate in, have never added or taken away from His work. I really need to stop kidding myself that I am at all in control of anything. Because I truly am not. (Thanks, Mike.)
Thanks for bearing with me, dearest of friends. The next time you do get frustrated with me and my awkwardness, please consider my wrestling against my own flesh. The best quote I have heard this week is: "I'm sorry for not being Jesus."
And I say that with all my heart. Thanks for reading.