Thursday, March 15, 2007

I yam what I yam

In business, as in life, I am learning that I must train myself to be dispassionate. For a person who is defined by emotions, deep passion and strong reactions to things that come my way, this is a challenge. Somewhere along the line I began to believe that what I feel is who I am. If I feel good, I am good. If I feel holy, I am. If I feel worthy of blessing, I am. If I feel guilty, I'm to blame.

Now what is wrong with this thinking? First of all, what happens in life does not depend on how I feel. It just simply is. My reaction to things is not necessarily based on fact. Many factors come into play here. As a child I learned that taking responsibility for things, even not of my doing or my fault, made people around me calm and happy. Saying "I'm sorry" and acting very sad or guilty for things, even things I didn't do, somehow in the short run fixed it. I learned to become a "hairshirt" on demand. Being self-sacrificing and feeling bad for even drawing breath seemed to be what I picked up from my home environment to the point that I can't even feel normal emotions as an adult.

This is not holy, healthy, productive, even human. I don't know what it is. The Apostle Paul wrote that buffeting the body or withholding things does nothing to help learn righteous living. We need to learn to make decisions based on what the Word of God says, how the Holy Spirit directs and what our relationship is to God, that is, His beloved child and follower. And, for pete's sake, sometimes He simply delights in blessing us. He longs for us to have good things. Life happens for sure. Bad things come our way. But His desire for us never changes. The scriptures say He rests in His love and joys over us with singing. When I think of that I just feel joy well up in my own being, to imagine Him singing over us. The scriptures also say, His compassion is to a THOUSAND generations for those who fear Him. His love is so out of proportion to anything we could ever give Him in return, He can't use our bad feelings or tiny attempts to somehow feel worthy. We never will be. He took care of it at the cross.

My greatest struggle in our new venture is that I don't feel worthy of being blessed, and to consciously and purposefully do something that would enable financial blessing makes me feel guilty. Once again, what is wrong with this picture? If God is directing this, I need to let Him. And whatever we receive, I need to let Him direct the dispersion of...the thing is, I have to realize, He trusts me that much. He trusted human beings enough to take 12 untrained teenagers and shape them into a force that changed the entire human race. That is the truth, not my feelings about His direction. I recently met an artist who does phenomenal work. I kept seeing Darrell's work in our local community college in recent years and absolutely fell in love with it. The last show that was up had pieces in it that were so confident, so completely lovely, I had to have one. I left my name and number with the gallery director, and heard from Darrell weeks later. Turns out he was working on a piece that made the hair stand up on the back of my neck it is so incredible. He e-mailed me a picture of the unfinished piece and I bought it sight unseen. I'm so excited to have this painting I can hardly wait, and it was not cheap, but something I consider a bargain because if he keeps painting like he is now, this man will be so successful there is no way I can pass it up. That is how God looks at us! He is so sure of our worth, loves us so much, nothing was too much for Him to "purchase" us. It feels so good to be excited again!!


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