You might get it.
Right after Dr. Kevin Leman, Shaunti Feldhahn, and Pastor Mark Gungor endorsed, “The Respect Dare for Married Women,” I remembered praying, “Lord, keep me humble. Don’t ever let me get a big head over this or anything else. It’s Your book, Your creation, I know I just happened to be handy and willing. These are Your miracles You create when wives read it and do what You suggest. Please help me just serve You and your purpose with it, keep me out of the way.”
That was a Saturday prayer.
Sunday morning, I attended the church I’ve worshipped in since 1999. Having taught Sunday School, VBS, served on multiple committees, and conducted a number of training classes and Bible studies there, I am familiar with the building. Even though it’s large enough to serve about 1400 people at the same time, I can tell you where the vacuum cleaners and the extra garbage bags are.
So you can imagine my surprise on this particular Sunday morning, when I walked down a corridor I’ve been down literally hundreds of times, right into the men’s bathroom.
Service had just ended, so yes, this was in front of about 30 people I knew.
And there were several men in there that I’d had in classes.
And I actually had the audacity to momentarily think, “Why is Jack in the women’s bathroom?”
Because it couldn’t actually be me that was in the wrong, right?
And then suddenly, the Truth set me free.
My face flushed, my palms wet, my heart raced at the pace with which I fled the room, colliding with several people in the hall, calling even more attention to myself.
Despina, the beautiful woman who cuts my hair and hides my gray was the first person I saw bold enough to simply stand in shock, mouth agape with wide-eyed wonder upon her face.
She caught me in a hug, and we laughed together as I told her about my prayer from the day before, as I tried unsuccessfully to not recognize everyone else around me who witnessed the spectacle.
“Oh, Nina, He just doesn’t waste any time, does He?” she laughed.
That whole pride thing is a big deal to God. If we look back to His original communication with the Israelites, we can see it show up in the Ten Commandments in several places. We’re told not to have idols. We’re told not to have any other Gods before Him. So how often in the average day do we violate those two by thinking we’re “All That?” And my personal favorite, “Thou shalt not take the Lord’s name in vain.”
We forget way too often that by calling ourselves, “Christian,” and then choosing to behave badly or not reading the Word daily and choosing to lay down our will and our pride, we are taking His Name in vain. By being conflict avoidant, or refusing to walk through disagreements in a way that honors Him, we are taking His name in vain. By knowing what good thing we should do, and actively not doing it, yet calling ourselves, “Christian,” … well, you get the point.
So while I’ve not had any major tests of my pride issue by becoming famous, I don’t need them. I can’t get through a single stinkin’ day without getting hit with how sinful I am. “Glad I don’t struggle with that anymore,” instead of, “Thank You, God, for freeing me from that…” seems like a small thing, but isn’t. Sin is sin. Or how about, “I’m embarrassed because so and so saw/heard/knows…” instead of, “Thanks for the lesson, Lord!” Or, “I don’t need to do xyz,” or, “I will work on that later,” or, “I am pleased that I …” instead of, “Thank You, Father, for giving me…” “At least I’m not …” The list goes on and on… and much of it is idolatry/self-worship/other-worship/Name in vain (did you catch that? “Vanity” is attached to “vain” in English…hmmm…L).
Do we need a lesson on how this destroys our marriages? Do the math.
Thanks for the grace yesterday. I’m still processing, but through the prayers and wise council of a few seasoned warrior-girlfriends, I’m on the other side. I’m sure the experience will eventually end up here when I’m done.
So, today He dares us to look at Proverbs 27. Double-dog-dare you to share what you learn, and/or subscribe to this blog (above), joining us on a daily pursuit of wisdom – in marriage and otherwise. Triple-dog-dare you to invite friends to join us by sharing the link on Facebook or via email. J
Lest you think I’m proud of my writing by asking you to subscribe to the blog, rest assured, I’m not. I don’t even consider myself a writer. I’m only doing what I feel led to do. I share with you what He provides me with daily because it’s His, not mine. I assure you I need the journey as much as you do! And I know He wants us to travel together.
It’s His way.
Blessings your direction upon this day, thankful to be traveling with you!