I'm doing Beth Moore's Daniel study right now, and she always makes me face up to some of my "junk." It's a love-hate relationship because on a good day it's encouraging and motivating, but some days, when self-condemnation and hopelessness want to creep in, it's a little discouraging to see how far I still have to go. I love that she passionately teaches the truth in a way that makes me want to seek after Jesus more wholeheartedly. I hate that her teaching always reveals something more in me that needs weeding out!
In the most recent video session I watched, she pointed out that we are "image builders" (or to put it in plain language--FAKES!) if we're any different in the dark of night or privacy of our own home than we seem to other people.
Ouch. Who isn't? Is there anyone who is always as kind to their family as they are to others? Is there someone out there who consistently looks to the good of others before thinking about themselves? Yes, I know that with Christ's help many people are truly authentic and transformed, and I am deeply changed in many ways, as well, but it's still a struggle for me. Why do I continue to think one thing but say another to avoid conflict? Feel self-righteous about the way I do this or that? Spill critical words about someone else to a friend or even just think them in my own mind? Yuck. Doesn't sound very likable.
Mostly it's frustrating because I know who I long to be, and I don't live up to that, ever. But partly it's convicting when I recognize that I often allow myself to dwell in those ugly thoughts rather than taking them captive and combating them with truth (more about the dry spell I've been in that contributes to that in a yet unfinished post). And partly, it's tiring because it is a lifelong journey to become more Christ-like, and I would really like to be perfectly like Christ NOW! Anybody with me?
Another truth Beth Moore pointed out in this session is that the one way to avoid being "burned" by life's trials is to "bathe" in God's presence. So today will be a day for reflection and prayer. I really need Jesus to speak into my heart about what the root of these sin struggles is, because the one thing I know is that I don't want to remain unchanged. I don't want to waste any opportunity He gives me, through the promptings of Beth Moore or otherwise, to be more fully made like Him. Really, I just feel like a good hug from Jesus would make it all better. I think I'll go take a "bath."