Learning To Sit,Walk and Stand Part 1

Sharing my Bible Doctrine experiences with the world is a trepidatious path.  As I was discussing with a friend last night, most of it is failure and embarrassment.  Generally it’s only after a lot of failure that I succeed at any application at all.  I think though that there might be some value in being an open book.  I suppose it is a way of laying down your life – so to speak.  Plus failure and embarrassment are only failure and embarrasment if you stay there.  Once you lay that aside it begins to be success. 

Success has actually been a theme in our recent Bible lessons.  I don’t think I can embark on this discussion of Sit Walk and Stand without first touching on the subject of success.  We as believers, especially doctrinal believers are hyper focused on success I think.  The truth is amazing and as you receive it, your understanding about the Spiritual Life broadens.  You learn how knowing God through His word sets you apart.  You have the opportunity to solve problems and think the way God does.  You also learn that with all that opportunity comes great responsibility.  You might actually end up a losing believer(not receiving all your rewards) through hearing the word of God, understanding it and then not applying it.  The warning is valid it comes right from God.  If we can succeed then we can also lose out.  So success and failure become a focal point.  We were focusing on learning God’s word, knowing Him, and living out that relationship through application but now we are hyper focused on our failures, just certain that they will rob us of success. 

I think as we get our eyes off the Lord and onto our performance (or lack there of) we miss the point of the warning.  We don’t really understand what the failure is that leads to a wasted life.  Likewise we misunderstand success. 

 At this point it gets a little sticky because I can only express what I understand about these things and I cannot give anyone the doctrine they must learn for themselves and I am fairly certain I don’t have it mastered or I wouldn’t be struggling with this issue almost daily. 

What I understand about failure is that I will fail a lot and failures can be turned into success through rebound (1 John 1:9).  True failure that leads to a wasted life is abandonment of God’s Word given through my right Pastor Teacher.  Failure is also hearing that same Word of God and becoming so apathetic or familiar towards it that application no longer matters.  I hear and understand but I refuse to apply. Stubbornness.  

So If I fail to apply am I a loser?  No, not necessarily, because who doesn’t fail to apply often.  Everyone fails.  It’s only the person who will not apply and will not rebound(1 John 1:9) who ends up in true failure.  Failing and confessing the failure to the Father leads to success through His ability to transform your thinking. 

What I understand about success is that if you never quit and you go forward no matter how much you fail, you will succeed.  You will be a winner and recieve the blessings that God has already assigned to you for time and eternity.  The greatest of those blessings I believe to be the intimate personal relationship with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit whom you have glorified and who’s essence has been portrayed by your life.  When life becomes all about Christ in you and you in Him, that is the ultimate success.  All the other blessings of life mean nothing if someday I don’t have that in fullest measure.

So obviously I want to succeed.  I believe it is possible and promised.  Sinless perfection isn’t even a requirement, only positive volition. 

As I share things about my life that seem more like sitting, stumbling and crawling than sitting, walking and standing.  I think it helps to consider what the real goal of the Spiritual life is all about. 

A quote from Bible class  “Success usually occurs in private but failure in full public view”

Keep Sailing,
Mary

 

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Learning To Sit,Walk and Stand Part 1

  1. Karen

    Hi Mary,

    Thought I’d share a little of what I’ve been going through the past year as I think it relates to your post. Several years ago a friend at one of the conferences shared a picture analogy of the spiritual life being like surfing…how the board is Bible doctrine, and we need to have a firm footing (anchoring if you will) on the board, the fins stabilize (the spiritual skills, if I remember the analogy correctly), the waves are the problems/difficulties/adversities in life. When a surfer is encased in the middle of the wave, the wave crashing down on him and completely surrounding him, he remains focused on the light at the end of the tunnel, maneuvers the board, and actually leans into the wave in order to gain momentum to reach that end point of the tunnel…
    In the midst of a problem I’ve been dealing with over the past year, I couldn’t mentally picture the waves as something good, as an opportunity to gain momentum….and definitely couldn’t enjoy it. With the gracious help of several doctrinal friends, I realized that one of my problems was that I was focusing on the waves, instead of the light at the end of the tunnel (God). What it has felt like to me is continually getting knocked off the board. I’m not even at the point of being skilled enough with the board to be in the middle of a wave, I’m still learning how that board really works and how to maneuver my footing to stay on the board and use it. I’m knocked off constantly, but I keep getting back on (via rebound)….just like someone learning how to surf. Sometimes I catch a small wave, and I go some distance…oh, cool! That was great! Then I’m knocked off again. But I get back on…and in that process I’m learning. I’m learning about God’s Word (it’s becoming more and more real; I know that I know…), I’m learning more about God (learning to trust Him more and more), learning more about myself (the good, the bad and the really ugly), about my position in Christ, and… the list goes on.
    I appreciated your post because I’m am now being led to present some of this information at work but from a “non-religious” perspective, and one of my doubts was that I’m still learning this and that is going to be obvious to the patients. But the truth is that I’m in it too; I’m human too. I think your point that being an open book might be of some value is a valid point. The examples we have in the Old Testament include many failures…and they are there for our benefit. I know I’ve learned a lot and have been greatly encouraged by reading Karen H’s blogs, and now your blogs. So thank you for being an “open book,” for sharing your struggles and thoughts, and know that there are those out here far away with similar struggles.

    Keep on surfing,
    Karen

    • karenhancock

      I Love your surfing analogy, Karen S. This is a great elaboration to Mary’s post. And I just finished one that inadvertantly deals with the same issue. I was feeling like a doofus for having to go back to the same thing all the time, then I read Mary’s post and then your comment and … very cool. Thanks for sharing here.

  2. mylittlebub

    Hi Karen S.!

    I like the surfer analogy and I feel just like you described. I get knocked off more than I actually ride the board. Those times when we catch a little wave is cool! And then we want to do it again! It’s hard to see the difficulty as momentum. That’s not easy for me either.

    I’m glad I’m doing this blogging. It’s helping me process the mega loads of conflicting information in my soul. On the one hand I have the truth from Bible doctrine and on the other the world is always working on getting it’s viewpoint in. So this way I can sort of work through it mentally.

    I LOVE seeing you on here. It’s better than only talking 2 times a year or so.

    Mary

    • karenhancock

      I’m glad you’re doing the blogging too! It is such a cool way to come together and “share notes”.

    • Karen

      This is the first time I’ve ever blogged. Kindov a trial and error process, but I’m liking it. It’s really cool to be in contact like this and get feedback or points of view from different people. I didn’t even know one could comment until I saw one on Karen’s new site, which got me curious.

      And yes, so nice to be in contact more than twice a year. 🙂

      Thank you!

  3. Karen

    Mary, since you indicated that your blog spot was a place to discuss and work out things you are thinking about, I thought I would share some thoughts I had this morning related to this post.

    As I was praying this morning, it occurred to me that my life really is perfect. Not in the usual sense of the word of not having any problems, as my post yesterday clearly shows, but in the sense that everything is as it should be. Everything in my life – my job, my marriage, my home, my pets, my physical problems, etc—is set up to help me grow spiritually and to bring me happiness. I just don’t usually see it that way. Which made me think of Pastor Bob’s lessons on the hardness of the heart (not believing) and David’s class last night of having the doctrine but not applying it and not seeing our circumstances for what they really are.

    For over a year now, God has brought to the forefront the issue of my not trusting Him. I’m learning to trust Him, but I don’t completely trust Him. There seem to be three things that tie in together here that seem to be related to staying on the surfboard– belief, faith, and trust. And the hardness of the heart or not having these three things results in me falling off the board. That’s as far as it’s gotten for now. Have to think about how this applies to each of my current situations, but thought I’d share this.

    Keep on surfing…

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