[Rough Draft]

A weblog about god, doubt, insomnia, culture, baseball

5.19.2004

why i do what i don't wanna do

so i've been talking to a friend lately about some of my "secret sins," parts of my life that i hold back from god, running from sanctifying grace as if it were a grizzly and i were, well, made of meat, as i indeed am. and i smell good. but some of the things i do every day just suck! if 3 years of seminary taught me anything, it taught me that i'm a sinner. pretty sure that wasn't on the syllabus, but it happened anyway. and so i love god all the more, right? and so i try and try again to live a holy life, right? more often than not, the answer's "nope."

i listened to a derek webb cd @ work this afternoon, and the lyrics of "crooked deep down" jumped out @ me like the aforementioned grizzly. listen here:

My life looks good I do confess
You can ask anyone
Just don’t ask my real good friends
‘Cause they will lie to you
Or worse they'll tell the truth
‘Cause there are things you would not believe
That travel into my mind
I swear I try and capture them
But I always set them free
It seems bad things comfort me 'cause

Good lord I’m crooked deep down
Everyone is crooked deep down
Good lord I’m crooked deep down
Everyone is crooked deep down
(Everyone is crooked deep down)

There was a girl she was made for me
But stood me up our wedding day
And now that girl runs around on me
And she’s drunk all the time
But I died to make her mine

Good lord she's crooked deep down
Everyone is crooked deep down
That girl is crooked deep down
Everyone is crooked deep down
Everyone is crooked deep down

But I’m not water and I’m not wine
You could say I’m just here for the party
With one thing on my mind
Squeezing me and my camel through the needle's eye
sound familiar? if so, then maybe you're dealing w/ some of the same issues i am. even though i usually want to do the right thing, i can't seem to pull it off on a regular basis. but something my friend said last night about the conflicts inside us struck me as both obvious and elusive. read phil 4.6-7. one of the ways we "image" god is in that we are both thinking and feeling beings. god thinks; i think. i'm emotional, and i don't think one succumbs to patripassianism just by describing god as "emotional," too. but w/in myself, deep down where i'm crooked, my heart and mind are often @ loggerheads, e.g., when i know i should love my neighbor but she persists in obnoxiously refusing to let me park in her driveway (silly, silly woman). the problem is that my mind and my heart are both tainted by the fall, so they both need to be guarded. and how do i do that? well, i don't; god does. but paul gives me a little formula, albeit not the equivalent of a thaumaturgical phrase or some mystic mantra, that can help out -- when i screw up, ask forgiveness and leave it in the past (plus take any remedial action necessary, like apologizing to the driveway-nazi . . . er, my neighbor). and don't worry so much about how i be livin' but take time every day to stop for prayer, petition and thanksgiving -- in everything. the result should be the all-surpassing, comprehension-transcending, undeserved, miraculous, awe-inspiring, mysterious peace of god laying down protection around my heart and my mind.

the experiment begins anew today. maybe i'll let you know how it goes. so long as you let me park in your driveway.

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