Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Radical: Ch 1

I struggled with this book, and not because my heart was pricked with empathy for the lost of Asia or Africa, not because I felt God leading me to give away my most prized possession.

I struggled because this first chapter didn't touch my heart. It didn't rock my world. There was no fire lit.

I was considering not blogging about chapter 1, because of my heart's lack of response. I wanted to give it another week. I didn't want to be a Negative Nelly, I didn't want to take away from what God might be saying to someone else.

Then this morning I read Marla's response to chapter 1. And I felt...a spark. Because my kids, my husband, my family...that's what speaks to me.

This Sunday, our preacher taught on idolatry. He asked several questions to help us identify things in our life that could be potential idols...something more important to us than GOD. One of the questions he asked was, "What is your greatest fear?"

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, I know that my greatest fear is losing my husband or one of my kids. The thought literally paralyzes me.

On the practice Mr Linky yesterday at Marla's place I linked to a post I'd written 3 years ago this fall. A precious family that we know and love was going through a health crisis with their college aged son. They were living my worst nightmare...the possible imminent death of their child.

But that was three years ago. Now? Everyone is fine...stronger, intimately connected to God, but fine. God healed Jerrod. Their family is intact. To my knowledge, everyone is healthy and happy. And I didn't know until this morning why they had been on my heart this week, the same week we studied about idolatry at church, the same week I started Radical.

Jerry, the dad, tells about a time at the beginning of the health crisis when he heard God speak to him while waiting at the doctor's office. God asked Jerry, "Will you always love me?" and over the course of the next few weeks, Jerry was forced to answer that question.

"If I allow your son to die today, will you still love me?"

"Eve, if I tell you not to eat the fruit on that tree, will you obey me?"

"Abraham, if I ask you to kill your son to honor me, will you do it?"

"Jesus, if I ask you to allow yourself to be brutally murdered so that Jenni can have forgiveness from her sins, will you do it?"

That's the radical question God has been asking all along, isn't it? That's the point Jesus was driving home in Luke 14, and in John 6, and in Mark 10.

"I know you will obey me when it is easy, but if I ask you to do something hard, will you still obey?"


Betsy said...

Thanks for sticking with it with me! :)


Misty said...

that is my greatest fear, as well, so i totally understood this!

Lori @ The Davidson Den said...

I am with you. Those are my biggest fears, too. I can literally make myself SICK imagining something fatal happening to one of my children or to my husband! Sick. Crippled with fear. Trusting God through the toughest of times is so hard to wrap my head around sometimes, even as I'm going through the tough times!

Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama said...

I think that you are in the same place as many of us going into this book..comfortable right where we are and afraid of what God might ask of us if we completely surrender. It will be interesting to see where He leads our hearts these next 9 weeks.

Shelly@Sweet Journey said...

Lately, God has been hammering home the idea that we don't seek Him in vain, that we can know Him. When those biggest fears become reality, all the time we have spent knowing Him, and seeking Him will not be in vain because we know that He is faithful and His love endures.

I'm not doing the study, but thanks for the thought provoking discussion!

Anonymous said...

I appreciate your thoughts. I am a fellow read along participant!

I understand your fears! I think every mom fears losing one of their kids or a spouse. I was just at a funeral where one of my friends was burried leaving her husband and four small kids.

I am thankful that NOTHING passes into our lives enless it has been filtered through God's hand.

Marla Taviano said...

Okay, wow. I love that God took you from a point of semi-apathy to really being struck by a truth he had for you. Thanks so much for sharing so honestly, Jenni!