I talked to a friend the other night that had some fresh and unsolicited perspectives to share. I felt annoyed. I wouldn’t feel angry and defensive if there wasn’t *something* behind the words that resonated with me. So, here are some thoughts after talking this out a bit.
These are some of the questions that annoyed me and challenged me in a good way:
Is this really working for you?
Are you in real fellowship?
Do you really feel bad about that?
How am I supposed to help you?
I realize the questions may not make sense out of context, but that’s ok. These are some answers:
- Yes, “this” is working for me. My relationship with God has been more consistent in the last two years than it has ever been. Today, I am usually in a calm state of gratitude and the highs and lows are less extreme. I really like that.
- Yes, I am in “real fellowship”. While I am not a member of a church right now, I have two gigantic spiritual avenues. Having said that, there are some aspects of church that I am starting to miss.
- You’re right, I don’t really feel bad about that. Sorry I’m not sorry (Thank You Rachel Wilkerson) and thank you for helping me to see that.
- There are 2-8 people that know ALL my stuff and keep me accountable. At this time last year there were so many people that I couldn’t even remember them all. I don’t want an easy out and I don’t want anyone to justify my actions. However, I do not respond well when people tell me what to do. If you care to share your experience, great. If you want to examine/process my life out loud to ME? Not so much a fan. Pray about it, figure out why it’s bothering you, and then maybe your feedback would be more helpful.
While I sometimes make mistakes, I no longer believe I should be shamed or punished. My conviction and the natural consequences are enough, and God patiently guides me. Today I do an inventory and ask for God’s forgiveness and guidance every day. Then rather than dwell on things, I pray that I can help others and then do the next right thing.