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"It's not about me...."

 Monday, April 17, 2017

I love stories.  About almost anything.  And almost all kinds of stories.
I love telling stories, even though I might not be the best at it.  I have the tendency to ramble, to add too much detail, to drag it out a little longer than I should.  But my friends listen to me anyway.  Bless you.
My favorite stories are the ones people tell about their lives.  Of family, childhood stories, testimonies.  Real stories–the good ones, the bad ones, the ugly ones, the messy ones.  All of them.  Because most of them usually have the best climax.
I’ll give you an example.  Here’s my story: I am a mess, but God picks up my mess.
Beginning to end in one sentence. Boom.  That is my story.  But the best part of that, to me, is that my story isn’t about me.  My life isn’t about me.
Sometimes I forget that.  I forget that this isn’t about me.  My goal in life is not to bring people to me.  My purpose in life isn’t to make ME known.  Why does anyone need to put a spotlight on a mess?
My purpose in life is to let people see the second part of my story.  I am a mess-got that.  But God fixes my mess.  Every day.  Every minute of the day, He is making me less and less of a mess.  He is tidying me up.  That is the story to be told.
I’ve been taking part in a daily prayer challenge. I pray out loud. I say all the things in my heart that I am afraid of. All my doubts. All my insecurities. I pray for my friends. My family.  I call them by name.  There is no better way to realize how big your mess is.  How much you cling to that isn’t Jesus.  How much of a mess you’ve been making of yourself instead of letting Him remove your clutter.
Today I cried.  I am not unaware of the fact that I am train wreck without Jesus.  But it really hit me hard this morning.  This week has been the toughest of the challenge.  I’ve been trying to believe more than I ever have.  Trying to hold on to the promises more than I ever have.  I lost sight of that somewhere along the past couple of days.  It felt like they were never coming.  That there wasn’t really anything else to believe in.
What a fool.  To not believe that the promises are on their way.  To not trust that His ways are so much higher than mine.  To not trust that everything has already been planned out, and that it is for my good.  To not believe that God has already gone before me and set everything out in its time.
Here’s a secret: He hears us.
I always knew that.  I’ve experienced it before now.  I’ve had it spoken to me, over me, drilled into me since I became a Christian.  But y’all.  How quickly we lose sight and grasp of the truth when things aren’t going according to OUR plans.  Do you know what happens when a mess of a person makes life plans?  More mess.  Bigger mess.  Catastrophe.
I can’t even imagine how horribly things would turn out if they went how I wanted them.  But God, thank you Jesus, knows what I need–not what I want.  He gives the things we need, I need, to make this story all about Him.
Because He is worthy of all the stories.  And then some.
I read an article about a football team that  had a theme for the season. The team walked around with shirts that had the letters “INAM” all over them.  INAM–it’s not about me.  The more I think about it, the more I want that be a summary of my story.  “My” story.
I want the story I get to tell be less about me and more about how He saves me, walks with me, guides me, hears me, answers my cry, delivers me, fights for me, frees me, etc.  The list will never end.

My prayer is that as my list gets longer, my praise is louder.  And that it drowns out the lies of insecurity, of insignificance, and of the need to keep it to myself.  And I pray that for you, too. 

Because every story where God is involved is a story that deserves to be told.  So let’s do just that.


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