Monday, June 07, 2004
I stayed up too late last night, and it's all my wife's fault. Not that that's a bad thing - but as my mind was re-engaging, hers was whirring down for the night. We talked a little about growing deeper, getting more intentional, living less superficial lives. I tend to think too much, something that's often mistaken for "depth" - but at times it helps to really meditate on something in order for it to become a part of me and not just "something I know". I want to help her grow in that, too - meditating on a topic, a scripture passage, a charge from the sermon, in order to be imaginative and obedient to what it's revealing about what God's up to.
My idea: read a "non-fiction" book that will stretch your mind if you let it. The one I've picked out, STRONGHOLD OF GOD by Francis Frangipane, is really good, really deep and really short. I'm asking her to read a chapter a day, to think about that chapter through the day, and then when the next day's reading time comes, try to think about what the previous chapter said before moving on to the next. I've found that meditating on something like that, instead of hurriedly going through a book or devotional, is that best way for me to process something and retain it in a way that actually changes and renews my mind/will/emotions.
Most of us hear a sermon, and it doesn't impact our lives because we don't meditate on what the pastor said, on what the message revealed about God, on what the challenge was and how it's supposed to impact and transform our lives. We hear, but we don't intend to obey - and we lose it. Happens to me still, but when something actually takes root and grows... there's a freedom in that, when real change happens.
I need to find her that book, though. Might be at home somewhere, but probably at church (she's already looked through the bookcases in the house). That book opened me up to recognizing how my own through patterns, developed over time, were hindering the way I was trying to serve God. But then, getting rid of old patterns required (and still requires ongoing) new strongholds to be built. Foundationally, it's all Jesus. Everything else can be deconstructed and reconstructed to suit as God reveals Himself in the process.
It's really good, this "growing together". We have been all along, but it was good over the weekend to be challenged to "go deeper" together, too. Too many marriages don't have that. With all the struggles and all the other things we deal with in our married lives, I'm glad this one can come to the surface from time to time to challenge us both in Christ.