Saturday, September 19, 2009

oh for grace

Game night just ended a little while ago, and apart from a slight shortage on sodas toward the end of the evening, I think it was a success. Chris and I had people over from Sunday school to play games and had a great time. We were both kind of nervous about it since neither of us is very outgoing or extremely excellent at playing host/hostess, and one of us (moi) has a slight, general phobia of having newish people over to her house. I'm a bit self-concious about having people over, I guess because of a lack of confidence in my house-keeping abilities, but I think it has been really good for me to push myself just a tad bit outside of the borders of my comfort zone. I've realized that being self-concious often keeps me from stepping up and taking the initiative to get to know new people and get involved in their lives, which indicates that I am being too self-focused. I feel that God has been working in me, convicting me of this and showing me that I need to get beyond myself in order to make myself available to others. How can I do the main work Jesus calls us to do (loving others) if I am not willing to know and love the people He so graciously places in my life for such a time as this?

My new job and membership in our new church present opportunities for me to "get over myself," so to speak, by setting aside my self-centered self-consciousness in order to reach out to others. The funny thing is, although I am striving to serve others, I feel that I might be getting the better end of the deal; opening up to others and letting go of some of my silly worries and fears in the process has been such a rich blessing and has allowed me to enter into deeper relationships.

So in addition to loosening (slightly, at least) my grasp on my need to think through and control every possible problem of which I can conceive (When we have people over, what will they think of our house? When I cook dinner for a mother with a new baby, will my cooking be all right? What if I put my foot in my mouth? What will I say if we don't have anything in common to talk about? What if I unintentionally offend someone? And, horror of horrors, what if the time I spend with my students is not productive? Will they be any better off after having me as a teacher for a year?), I also get the benefit of getting to know and becoming attached to some pretty great people. I pray that God will continue to help me "get over myself" and let go of my need to control. When it comes down to it, I think it's a self-centered issue (all of these what-ifs center around me and my pride) and a trust issue (if I can't trust God to accept and make something of the unworthy offerings I offer up to Him, whom can I trust?).

I will close with part of the song "Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus" (words by Louisa M. R. Stead, 1882, music by Will­iam J. Kirk­pat­rick) that seems an appropriate way to conclude my thoughts this evening:

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him
How I've proved Him o'er and o'er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus
Oh, for grace to trust Him more

1 comments:

mattflo said...

Game night was awesome. The things of this world constantly try to steal our attention but are ultimately meaningless. You should check these out. I think you will really like them 1) Gospel Conference pt1 3/29/09 http://is.gd/3BLPa 2) God of Worship and 3) Heart of Worship 8/5/09 and 8/6/09 (only works in itunes) http://is.gd/3BLVF

Let me know what you think. Thanks again for hosting game night.