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Monday, March 2, 2009

Why are you here?

The following are a few unedited journal entries from last week...

2/25 "You are not here for you."

2/26 Driving back from Sioux City, listening to Catholic radio, the words were crystal clear to me. "You are not here for you." I started crying, realizing once again, that I live, most of the time, for me.

The guy on the radio (Ben somebody) was a "religion consultant" for the TV show Joan of Arcadia, which I loved for the brief time it aired. He (Ben) was talking about how Joan (the main character who had regular face to face encounters with God) never reaped the benefits of all her experiences with she always struggled with self-sacrifice. That's the moment when the words "You are not here for you" rang loud and clear in my head and heart.
"You don't exist for yourself, Patty, I made you for others." God then proceeded to list all the "others" he'd made me for...among the list were people I struggle with, people I deeply love, people who are like me and individuals who are drastically different; friends, family, neighbors, acquaintances, strangers...
The phrase kept going through my head like it was on one of those electronic message boards..."you are not here for exist for are not here for exist for others..." and on and on.
The idea of existing for others is hardly a new concept. Yet once again, I needed to know; I needed to remember why I spend time on this earth...

"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works which he prepared in advance for us to do" Ephesians 2:10

2/27 Driving to Josh & MB's pops concert, listening to the radio, we stumbled on a song that I hadn't heard. As I listened, there was a phrase in the chorus that I was sure I wasn't hearing right. I asked the kids if they knew the song or phrase, they claimed they didn't know either.
If the lead singer was saying what I thought he was saying, I was shocked.
Then, today, home sick with the flu, I switched on the TV and saw these early 20-somethings singing the same song I'd heard on the radio. Again, I couldn't quite believe I was hearing the chorus correctly, so now, armed with the song name & group (America's Suiteheart by Fallout Boy), I googled.
I was right...the last phrase in the chorus is"I'm in love with my own sin".
Yep, that's what it says: "I'm in love with my own sin".
I haven't researched the group enough to know what they're all about...if it's satire, social commentary or just a bunch of kids looking for cool lyrics; but the Truth of the phrase hit me.
I am, in deed, in love with my own sin. And because I'm in love with my own sin, I have BIG problems when God tells me "You're not here for you".
Admit it, we love our sin. Maybe not all of it and probably not in theory; we know it's bad and that it hurts us and others, but on some fundamental level, we love our sin. We guard it, justify it, rationalize it, protect it, nurse it...we'd do just about anything to keep ourselves in control of our lives...which is THE sin. We want ourselves in the center and everything else, including God, as little satellites revolving around us.

"You are not here for you."

"For we are God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works which He prepared in advance for us to do" Ephesians 2:10


janelle said...

What sort of response is appropriate for this? Very convicting...

I do have a few sins that I love; I make excuses for and I nurture and take very good care of.

Thanks for this Patty.

patty said...

yeah, I didn't think many people would respond...I know God's words hit me right between the eyes and I actually wanted to edit this and water it down...but I couldn't.

Chris Godfredsen said...

Good grief, Patty!

God uses you to just hammer away at me, to chisel off the crap and to get me to be honest with Him!

It sometimes hurts, Patty. Those things that I don't give over fully, for all time - things like control and pride...sometimes thinking I somehow have it together. My list could fill this whole page.

Thanks for being God's obedient instrument!

Jennifer said...

Yep. That's me, a lover of my own sin.

I gotta lay it down.

Cherie said...

The problem is that "knowlege isn't power". And I know you know what I mean. Arrggghhh....