Friday, September 3, 2010

First let me start

By explaining why I named my blog Temp Work.  Firstly, I'm absurdly horrible about naming written pieces, letters, etc. I really wish I didn't have to write a subject ever time I write an email.  So I decided to name it something I see quite often at school. On our computers there is a folder called 'temp work', that students can put files on to work on for a time; these folders are wiped twice a week.  It's also a reference to my current status in life.  The things I write on this blog will mostly be of things I'm currently pondering, struggling with, or revisiting.  Also I've not been much of a blogger until now, so after a time I don't expect to be writing on here much.

What I've been thinking about lately has largely been triggered by a book I'm reading, Wild at Heart by John Eldredge.  It's brought up a host of questions that I probably won't even get to half of on here.  But for the past few weeks I've been thinking about how I can effectively and rightfully be a witness for Christ in Colorado. 

A brief background as to my current living situation.  Without going too much in depth, I've recently picked up, changed majors, and transferred to the Art Institute of Colorado in Denver, leaving behind the Christian ORU bubble, and a myriad of good friends.  It's been hard, I've struggled, I've taken back some ground, but I'm still learning and overall still way out of my comfort zone.

To give you an insight into my life-I am a follower of Christ, I'm absolutely in love with the God of the Ages; my life belongs to him.  Things I am not: I am not a pushover, I don't over-spiritualise things, I actually don't judge other sinners, and I keep a fairly open mind to how others live without compromising on the way I live.  After all I myself am a sinner, no better, no worse. Now that I'm at a secular school, and through a few revelations, I have come to the understanding that it is my mission to be a witness for Jesus to the lost around me.  Art school in Colorado is certainly a mission field.  Now comes the confession: I don't think, no, I know, that most of the people that I live with or go to school with have no clue that I'm a Christian.  I'm almost ashamed to say that, but I know that shame does not come from Christ and absolutely nothing is gained through entertaining it.  Failures in this life are not final thankfully.

So in short, have I failed? I'm still trying to figure that out. I can list a myriad of reasons why I haven't been the bold, on fire preacher I feel I should be at times. It's the same reason I did it in high school; I don't want to be shunned, discounted, made a fool of.  Except now I feel it's more complicated than that.  I feel that I don't need to be a Paul, preaching the gospel at every turn, to be an effective witness.  But I almost feel guilty for feeling that way.  Because I've heard two different things.  One, is to boldly preach, to be the fearsome lion.  The other, is to be genuine, because people will see anything else as pretense, and people will see right through that and discount what I say.  A good friend told me that one day.  And maybe there's a third option, that I haven't discovered yet.  I have a feeling deep down that there is, and I'm sure I won't know until I've lived it.  Funny how that works.

Why I have acted the way I have I suppose is based on what I've come to believe, and decided to live out. The people of our generation don't need another bible basher to come thump them over the head so they can roll their eyes and check out like youth have been doing for centuries. Nobody wants a self-righteous Christian to point out the errors of their ways, they need someone to guide them, encourage them, give them hope. So I befriend people, try my best to act as kindly as possible within the context of my sometimes sarcastic personality, and if the situation ever arises where I can use my wisdom to maybe shed some light on what's really going on, and get them to ask questions, that's what I want to do.  But is that bold enough?

So to be plain, I'm rather confused, feeling slightly guilty for being a lousy witness, but hopeful. Hopeful that God has a plan for me, that's bigger than anything I can possibly conceive. I know he does. Another good friend told me once that it's foolish to think that we can do anything to alter the plans God has for us. So true, I've always said the same about 'global warming' and how we puny humans couldn't possibly destroy one of God's creations.

I recently was in a big group of people and one girl, rather aggressively, stated she was an atheist; shouting the commonly used phrase "Where was God?" I knew that was an opportunity, but I had no idea how to seize it, because it was a large group, and maybe I was just scared it wouldn't go well.  In retrospect, perhaps standing up to her beliefs would have been a constructive situation for me overall- perhaps then people would have begun to see the full measure of who I am. I believe I'm 'different', and it's my hope that others begin to see that as well. I think that's a huge ministry tool.

What do I do?

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