Friday, January 19, 2007

Masks

Just had a very disorienting, uncomfortable conversation with a friend. She has been reading my letters to you. She was shocked that I swore and hated social groupings. Her good opinion of me changed on a dime. My whole Christian life has been filled with these minefields. When we become Christians we are made new creatures, but not overnight. In fact for me it may take a life time. "Growing in grace" is one of my favorite terms. So...since I am still growing I will always have a lot of the old nature left in me. And... my old nature swears, gossips, is judgemental, has a nasty temper and has had more sex than a hooker. I am not proud of these sins and have, and do, ask for forgiveness. But, I am getting sick of hiding them. Do I wish they were not there, yes. Can I pretend to be "Sister Super Christian" anymore, no.

In our conversation I revealed my desire to beat the sh*t out of half the people I know. She said shocked, "Oh Bea you are not like that." Kind of a stupid thing for me to have said if I wasn't "like that." She had a notion of who I should be and did not want to see who I am. Made me mad. (Big surprise.) Mad at me.

I am the one who led her to believe I had only one facet. Why? I value her good opinion. So I became who and what she valued. A lot of her values are also mine so I guess I became what I value also. But then I was/am stuck in the small christian box. How to be in the world but not of the world is very confusing/confining for me. I get sick of an all "light" life. My personality has some very dark patches in it which I am loathe to give up. Why? Because the creative side of my life seems to flow from these patches. I think this to be blatant nonsense as I worship the "Creator." But my feelings tell me differently. I thank God for the blessings in my life and then yell the f word when I get mad. I need your prayers. I do not know how to reconcile my dark patches with the Light. "Ask for forgiveness and give them up" feels like death. Which I suppose it is in a way. Death of the old sinful nature. The "old sinful nature" dances, and drinks and flirts, is irresponsible, vain and selfish and generally looks to be having a good time in life. Sister Super Christian ( thanks Joyce) smiles and works and is responsible and looks miserable most of the time. She is sure boring.

I guess my basic question is, "How to be a creative Christian without tapping into the dark patches?" If you have answers to any of this please send it my way.

Take care of yourself. Love Bea

3 comments:

Charity said...

Great post...I think it is important that we don't try to pretend to be "super Christian" because sometimes that leads to pretending with God to and then He can't do His work in us to transform us. Unfortunately there are some people who judge us and think less of us because some of our old self has not been transformed. There is nothing we can do about that (because it is about them, not us). We must rest in the grace of God and patiently wait for His transformation while at the same time being willing to obey the next thing He asks of us. Sometimes there are behaviors that God has told us to give up, but that others continue to do. We must be careful not to judge others on their behaviour because God may not have asked them to change yet.

Last week in our small group we studied an excerpt from Mere Christianity that talks about "Giving All to Christ." It is in the book Devotional Classics and you can actually read this section online at amazon. http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0060777508/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-7604597-8317702#reader-link

Cindy184 said...

When I became pregnant at 34 out of wedlock with a baby girl and a drunk and drug addicted biological father who wanted me to have an abortion (that's quite a mouthful, isn't it?) I decided to join the church after many years of spiritual progress in a 12 step program. For one reason, I wanted my daughter to be part of a church and not have to hit bottom and go to a 12 step program to learn about God. For another reason, I had been meaning to do it for a while already. I had several years of thinking I had to be a certain way and trying to grapple with some of the things I heard in church and also trying to be much better than I'd ever been about cursing and other stuff. I was living a clean life with only a few vices left. I think I turned more to food then because it seems to be an acceptable vice, especially at chruch where there are lots of doughnuts and stuff like that. But as the years have passed I have come to terms with having a darker side. It is part of me just like all the rest. It is there for a purpose, I just rarely act upon the thoughts that come from there. And I know what you mean about that side being linked to your creativity. But I am slowly getting a new view of myself as years go by. We are human beings, and never meant to be perfect. But we grow. Sometimes our "dark sides" are of much use to God because they help us understand others and relate to them, gain their trust because we are not Super Christian. I could never relate to the Super Christian at all, those types were people I avoided. I needed a more middle of the road type to be my witness to the love of God. I love reading your posts. I feel a kinship with you.

Ann said...

I am a fan of Stargate SG1.
Quote from an episode:
Oma DeSala (an Ascended Being): "The universe is vast, and we are so small. There is really only one thing we can ever truly control."
Daniel Jackson: "What's that?"
Oma: "Whether we are good or evil."

Another quote:
Shifu has the genetic memory of all previous Goa'uld that came before his parents, Apophis and Amonet. He says that Oma Desala, on Kheb, taught him how to suppress this knowledge.
Shifu, quoting Oma, says the evil in his mind is too strong to resist so, “The only way to win is to deny it battle.”

Pick up any of John Rosemond's books on family and child rearing. He will help you to realize/remember, even God couldn't get it right the first time with Adam and Eve. They didn't obey and we have it in ourselves to be disobedient as well. Our only recourse each day is to 'deny it battle.'

We will never be perfect. Just ain't gonna happen.

Are you acquainted with www.flylady.net? Perfect is a dirty word there.

Love your blog.

I am soon to be 52 and feel much as you do, so often. It's difficult for our family and friends to discover we aren't who they thought we were. Too funny really.

At times it's been difficult to realize who I am, flawed, flawed, flawed. Yet, it's actually quite freeing.

I found your blog when you referenced Linda Moran's book How to Survive Your Diet. Check out the support group. You don't HAVE TO post. You can just read. IF you are interested.

Ann