Just In Case You Thought They Weren’t Paying Attention

I find myself – find, because sometimes I lose myself (but that’s a story for another day) – sometimes sinking into other people’s habits. Friends who clean their kitchen before going to bed out of habit and discipline make me happy. I want to be like them: asleep with the knowledge of a clean kitchen awaiting me at breakfast time. Then there are habits that I pick up that I absolutely abhor. And everyone once in a while someone will notice and point one out. Dagger.

Last week I went into work early to drink free coffee, sit on the patio, soak up the beautiful morning sun, and do my Bible study. My manager saw me, made a quick comment, and then continued getting ready for his day. A few hours later something happened that I wasn’t super thrilled about. In response to the event, I said, “Jeeeesuuuuussss.” As soon as it came out of my mouth I knew that I shouldn’t have said it. Taking the Lord’s name in vain is pretty high on the list of things that I should not be doing.

In a culture where we take it so quickly and easily, I have become somewhat – not completely – desensitized it. “OMG” is overused in all the worst ways. People drop g-d’s in movies and all around me. Commenting on them all the time would be ridiculous, but falling into it is much worse.

Anyway, I said this and my manager pointed it out. He said something along the lines of how I was just making Bible verse note cards earlier and taking His name in vain now. Ouch. The sad part: he was right. I had done that exact thing.

I don’t hide my faith – not even at work. Therefore, I am open for all kinds of judgement and discrimination. I should not be surprised that when I make this kind of blatant mistake that people will notice. They notice a person who is called to righteousness when they are acting unrighteous.

How much more will my husband notice my worst places? How much more will he reflect and respond to the sin in my life because it is hitting his life so directly? Even when I am in my own “little world,” he is there. He notices. He is affected.

Just in case you thought they weren’t paying attention – your husband, kids, coworkers, siblings, friends – I just wanted to remind you that they are. They are seeing when you stand up for righteousness and when you fail miserably. They see how to you respond to that failure. Sure, it’s not just about them. But they are paying attention. You have a special opportunity before you. Use it wisely.

How do you respond when people see you in these types of failures? What advice would you give to me or others when our sinfulness clashes with a spouse?

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Like a tree planted by the water

I wanted to spend this labor day writing and writing. I hate that I haven’t been blogging as much as when I first began it. My plan was ruined by too many thoughts. Go figure. As I sit here not writing, I’m listening to a song that I’ve had on repeat for almost two weeks. She says, “I am planted by the rivers, by Your streams of living water. And I’ll grow up strong and beautiful, all for your splendor, Lord.” It’s so beautiful! It puts to song the verses in Jeremiah that says,

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:7-8)

Trees planted by water

If I were the tattoo type, I might get a tree (just branches) on my wrist as a reminder. If I were a good painter, I might paint this on canvas and put it somewhere that I could see everyday.

These trees are strong. They are sturdy. They do not wither. They do not wilt. I pray that I would be like this tree. That my roots would be deep in Him.

Enjoy the song. For Your Splendor by Christy Nockels