Thursday, July 14, 2005

Passing on the Left!

That's what the experienced biker said as he passed me by on the trail.

"Passing out is more like it," I thought to myself as I huffed and puffed and pedaled hard to keep up with my two friends.

"Passing," another bunch of riders whizzed by me.

"Help yourself!" I muttered under my breath.

"On your left!" This time it was a dad, followed by a string of little girls who obviously had more muscle power in their little legs than I do in my entire body!

It was not a fun ride. Well, it was in a way. My friends and I laughed quite a bit. The whole time I was thinking how extremely out of shape I must be. Finally we realized that the problem was my knobby trail tires; they create more resistance, making for a rougher ride.

The funny thing was, I've always ridden alone in the past. I never considered that I might be slower than the average biker, or having a tougher time. Alone - I was doing just fine. Along side some friends however, my lack of pedaling power quickly became apparent.

Later tonight, after I caught my breath and cooled off a bit, I saw an analogy between that bike ride and the Christian life. Alone, I think I'm doing alright. My sins don't seem that bad; in fact, I hardly notice at all how they drag me down. I'm encumbered by weakness but I have no clue. Then I spend time with other Christian friends. I see them curb their tongues, exhibit a spirit of humility, and live in an attitude of prayerfulness. My sins are not so comfortable now. I see how my weaknesses have dragged me down, held me back from enjoying the fullness of a relationship with Christ.

I know God wants me to walk with Him . . . to spend time alone in His presence. I'm comfortable with that. But He also commanded community for a reason. Not to compare ourselves to each other, but so that the brightness of another's light might reveal how dim my light is. And perhaps on a day when mine is shining a little brighter, another may see and want that for herself.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Slug Fest 2005

Slug Fest: a period of days on end during which one feels like a total slug, and yet, unable to muster enough strength to break free of the rut, appears to be enjoying this present state

That describes most of 2005 YTD for me.

I feel good when I'm in God's word on a daily basis. I feel loved and secure when He speaks to me through His word.

I feel so alive when I'm exercising and eating right. Nothing beats working up a sweat on the treadmill or an early morning walk that ends with a quart of freshly picked berries.

I'm so happy when I'm writing and giving way to the kajillions of thoughts bouncing around in my brain, eager to escape onto paper.

So why do I stare miserably into my closet each morning at the few remaining outfits that I fit into? Why do I moan and groan about pain, knowing it's mostly a result of poor eating habits and lack of exercise? Why do I deliberately choose to read something else, anything but my Bible day after day? Why do I jump on the Internet when I should be writing?

Tonight it occurred to me this is more of a slug fest than I first jokingly described. It's a true slug fest - a real, honest-to-goodness, knock-down, drag-out battle. I'm right where the Enemy wants me to be: feeling attacked and defeated. But I don't have to live on the losing side. Recognizing the Enemy is half the battle. Knowing victory is secure in Christ is everything.