Conviction. It’s a sweet disease.
Written on 11/14/2010
Pretty much every single day I am faced with some sort of conviction. Whether it be a conviction concerning parenting, selfishness, materialism, not spending enough time with The Lord, etc. I have some questions regarding conviction. I think I understand it, but I don’t know. You would think if you felt badly enough about something you would do something to change it. That seems like the logical thing to do. Not only does it seem logical, it’s pretty much demanded of us by Jesus. Personally I believe conviction is a beautiful way of correcting us and leading us to righteousness. It’s like the dreaded red correction pen every teacher used in school. You’d take a test (or live a day) and at the end of the test (or at the end of your day) you would be presented with your outcome. How’d you do that day? How many red marks (or thoughts of conviction) did you have?
So. My questions are….
How do we listen to our convictions? What are some realistic ways to minimize them? Especially the nagging ones that you seem to face every day.
Why aren’t we changing the things we are feeling conviction about?
For example. I feel a heavy burden for children in need. I mean HEAVY! I shed many tears for children who are sad, hurt, suffering or in need. But why can’t I budge to make a difference? What will it take to pull me out of my selfish oasis and put me in a place of vulnerability and usefulness. How do I even waste a moment complaining about “this” or “that”.
Currently my view as I write this blog is of my two incredibly beautiful, happy, perfect, healthy children playing in my ginormous soaking bath tub. They are warm and clean and playing peacefully. I am typing on my Mac Book Pro drinking fresh clean water and sitting in my new warm clothes (that I didn’t need by any means) I purchased yesterday (because in my mind I felt a little bored and sad, so I could justify my spending). I can hear our TV on downstairs. Wasting electricity doesn’t phase most people who don’t understand what it’s like to live without. We just go on with our day. Wasting everything we can get our hands on. We whine. We complain. We stuff ourselves with things that “make us happy” and completely ignore the things The Lord is asking of us. Sure, He wants us to be happy and enjoy life but in what context? I believe He tells us that our treasures we store up on earth will burn up and disappear. In the end they wont mean anything to anyone. If He is generous with us, He expects us to be generous back to Him. Nothing we have is our own. It’s all a gift from God. How are we treating these gifts? Probably like spoiled rotten children. I know I am.
There are millions of children hungry and cold in this world. It’s easy to ignore this fact because we can’t physically see them suffering. And it’s easy to hear about and feel sad about for a few minutes and then dismiss the uncomfortable thoughts before it starts tugging at our hearts, or heaven forbid convicting us to spend our time or money helping them. Plus. We need that money to buy our kids 5 pairs of new shoes they don’t need because they need shoes to match their outfits. Even if it means using a credit card and putting ourselves into debt. Our kids have got to look cute! And since we’re on the subject. What are we as Christian’s teaching our children? Are we teaching them to love clothes and possessions or are we teaching them to love Jesus and people?
Ask yourself this. How would you do if you had all your material possessions taken away? How would you survive if you didn’t have money? What would happen if you were severely burned or disabled in an accident? What if your child was born with or developed special needs?
Are you sensing conviction as you read this? Are you trying to convince yourself that you aren’t selfish, or you aren’t being disobedient? Are you trying to justify your life and the way you live or the things you do with your time and money? Most likely you need to spend time praying about this area. I know it’s something I need to spend a lot of time praying about and working on.