To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common--this is my symphony.
~William Henry Channing

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

"But Paul, in his humility, saw the Corinthians from a divine perspective, and he allowed this perspective to determine his attitude toward them And let me say by the authority of God's Word that you and I must hold this same perspective toward the believers around us. After all, if Paul can find evidences of overflowing grace even in the Corinthian church, what possible excuse could you and I have for not finding evidences of grace in our fellow believers?
We must remind ourselves, This individual has been previously acted upon by God. That's the divine perspective we must begin with, or else we will be tempted to look for others' deficiencies rather than for the evidences of grace in their lives." ~~CJ Mahaney Chapter 8 Humility

This...this is what I'm after. This is the life I want to live. It's what I want people to afford acknowledge that God is at work in my my church. I want to offer this to others.
Because offering this out even when it seems that all that is returned is criticism, discontentment, and discouragement are what you have to contend with...that's humility.
That is Christ.
May it also be His followers.
This is the end of the struggle I think. My last brings everything back to this. Not understanding, not seeing clearly where and what God is doing? It's okay...because this is what we want. We humble ourselves under God's hand...we trust.
We trust that He is at work in our lives, in our church. We trust that He is at work in the lives of others and we actively seek to find evidence of this. Like Paul, being more aware of God's prior activity than the present failings...real or perceived...of others or ourselves.