Insecurity, a GOOD/GOD thing?

One of the biggest obstacles of my growing faith, is an idolatrous worship of exercise. Praise the Lord, that the Holy Spirit consistently, frequently and aggressively, convicts me of this tendency and turns my heart toward Him once again. One of the tools He has used to do this is a book called Pray Fit.  I was in Kansas, and a girl-friend and I had miss-communitcated about what time we planned to get together over coffee. Being car-less and on the opposite side of town from my parents’ house, I meandered across the street to the local Christian Bookstore. 

Bored, cold and feeling sorry for myself, (not to mention feeling cheap since it was just after the Christmas spending season) I found myself in the clearance isle. I gravitate toward all things “fitness,” “skinny,” and “health.” It’s not usually a good thing, but in this case, God worked my sinful bent for His glory. I picked up Jimmy Pena’s book, “Pray Fit,” from the bottom shelf.

I was instantly captured by his thorough and aggressive devotionals. There was no pansy-footing around the God-talk in favor of diet tips and weight loss jargon. Pena is unashamedly about Jesus.  Not to let the diet-starved reader down, at the end of each chapter, Pena includes a progressive, bodyweight workout. I had to have the book. I know that health and exercise is a good thing, but in our culture, frequently perverted into the only thing. I have been searching long for the way to balance my love for fitness with the truth that Jesus is my life.

I have been reading the book slowly, digesting each devo and trying some of the workouts. I joined Pena’s website, Prayfit.com. That is what finally, leads me to my point today (:

A recent entry on Prayfit.com, asks “which Bible character do you identify with?” Since this week we are focusing on Moses, I began to think about him. Do you identify with Moses in any way? Most of this week, we are focusing on Moses’s strengths; the contrast between his growth in holiness and the disobedient Israelites. But Pena points out Moses’s insecurity. I hadn’t thought of that.

I am an insecure person. Most of my life, I have promised God that I would offer myself fully to Him as soon as I got my life straightened out.

As soon as I get over this eating disorder thing, God. Then, I won’t be such an embarrassment to you. Then I can share my testimony and you’ll be proud of me.

As soon as my marriage is a better reflection of Christ and the church, then God, I’ll tell others about the miracles you have worked in our lives.

As soon as I resolve the conflict with my sister, then I’ll tell everyone about your overriding peace.

As soon as I get over this sadness, this loneliness, then I’ll take the mask off and admit my past to others so that they can see and be astonished at the change in me.

Does that sound familiar? As I wrote on Monday, I don’t think Moses held anything back as he scribbled down his complaints, joys, daily duties and God-moments. Obviously, it can’t be denied that God has used all Moses’s miserable, insecure moments just as effectively as all of his successes. Consider.

Want To Read Someone’s Diary?

Most of you may not realize that each time you read this blog, you are flipping through the pages of my journal. Have you ever wondered where Scripture came from? Particularly, the Pentateuch? In the New Testament, on several occasions, God instructs the authors to “write this down.” Peter even refers to Paul’s writing as scripture. It seems clear that most of the New Testament authors knew what they were writing and why.

Outside of the Gospels, the New Testament reads a little like a sermon. It’s full of instruction, admonition, encouragement. It’s the correspondence between itinerant pastors and their churches. But what about the Old Testament? This week we are taking a close look at Moses: the friend of God, the most humble man that ever lived, the stutterer, the shepherd of God’s people, the son of a Hebrew, the son of an Egyptian princess.

I am plodding through the Bible in a year, this time chronologically. As I skip between chapters of the Old Testament, most of the first 5 books are written cohesively, each episode in order. Episode, maybe I mean “entry.” I think the Pentateuch reads like Moses’s journal. Think of it, Moses writes about:

1. What God is doing

2. What his fellow Israelites are doing

3. What he is learning

4. His failures

5. His triumphs

6. His prayers

7. His complaints

8. His travels

9. Illness and miracles

10. His siblings, his in-laws and his wife

I wonder if God told Moses that one day the world would have the opportunity to read his journal?

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4

Being a journaler, I submit to you that we are not the only benefactors of Moses’s journal. It’s obvious in Deuteronomy 1, that Moses is beginning to read out loud his journal entries from past decades. “At that time I said to you…” (Duet. 1: 9) Throughout the Old Testament, God instructed His people to erect monuments, altars, tell their children, remember…

Do I learn from my past? Do I consider the mistakes of my predecessors and learn from them? Moses went from being a murderer and a liar, to being called the “most humble man that ever lived.” He talked with God face-to-face. He was a friend of God.  Moses certainly wasn’t perfect, but how was he perfected?