Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Why Me? (and other musings on the theory of pity parties)

WHY?  Why does it always have to be me?  Why can't I get to spread happy news about myself, and somebody else get to experience the joy that comes with only having sadness to share with everyone?


This is possibly one of my favorite questions!  Consider it on the top of my "questions I like to ask myself when throwing a pity-party".

Now, I am actually sort of serious when I say this, but I think my heart is a magnet.  I mean it!  I'm not talking about those little itty bitty magnets, but the really powerful ones!  Ones that have a really strong attracting force, but can shatter in the blink of an eye.  My reasoning behind this ridiculous hypothesis, is that I feel like I get slammed with innumerable false accusations, every single day of my life!  (*violin music here would be nice*) When I am "pity-partying",  I honestly think that the Queen of hearts from Alice in Wonderland, had a pretty good life.  Being able to yell "off with his head" all day long, doesn't sound too bad; having people actually be afraid of enraging you, would protect one from a lot of heartache...but you know what that would require?

A heart of stone..

"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh."  Ezekiel 36:26

In order to protect myself in a way that my emotions would deem adequate, I would need to give up the very thing that God has promised to give His chosen ones.  And frankly, I am not willing to sacrifice my sanctification and character on the altar of carnal happiness.

So the real question I should ask myself in said pity parties, is "why not me?"  Why should I be the one who never hurts?  Why should I get to escape the pain that comes along with devotion to Jesus?  Regretting the hardships that come with a heart that is being fused to Christ, is conveying the idea that I want to die and go to Heaven, but I am not really willing to sacrifice everything and walk the life of a Christian....and to be honest, that is not how I want to be.  That is not what I want to shout to the world!  I want to tell the world, that I am happy to give up every scrap I could possibly gather and give it to my Savior!  I want everyone to know, that there is a joy that comes with being a Christian, and it is one that can never be equaled.  I don't want people to have the impression that being a Christian is dull and depressing!  But the only way to conquer my faults in this area, is to understand why it can feel burdensome at times.

When my thinking is geared towards how my flesh can be satisfied, I will never be happy!  It is as simple as that.  The only thing that can ever truly satisfy a person, is redemption in Jesus Christ, and being able to relish in that, requires us to walk in the Spirit.  Hence, when we walk in our flesh, we will not ever have our seemingly unquenchable desires satisfied.  

Another why that I find particularly good, is "why am I struggling?"  What is it that is holding me back?  Could it be...peoples' opinion of you?  (*cough* I am not talking to myself here, just you ;)  Now mind you, if you are concerned with the idea people are getting of Christianity because of you, that is a good concern....but that is not what I really mean here, and you know it.  What I am talking about, is thinking that maybe someone won't like you if you decide that you don't want to watch that film with them.  That maybe if you stand up and say you don't support devilish music, someone might dub you the village snob.  But when it comes to a stand for all things Biblical, looking like a snob is the least of our worries.  Being worried about the eternal state of souls, your character and your witness to others is cause for concern.

And now that we are coming to the end of this post, I have come to a resolution!!  (please hold back the applauding, my soap box is not in the closet yet)  I am going to try harder at endeavoring to completely forgive those who seek my hurt, because the reality of it is, when people use their words, keyboards, blogs, lies and rumors to hurt Christians, they are in fact, not really attacking the person because of their eye color or height, but they are attacking the Person the Christian possesses...which is Jesus Christ.  Now, if you had a toss up between being loved and adored by all, and not bearing the name of our Savior; or, being hated by every human being there is to hate you, and clinging to Him for every milli-second of the rest of your life, which would you choose?  

Oh, ultimatums are the worst, aren't they?  But the life of a warrior, I shall choose; because Christ has chosen me to fight a battle to advance a kingdom, and by the grace of almighty God, laziness I shall not embrace!  

"If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.  If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, 'A servant is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.  But all these things they will do to you for My name's sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me."  John 15:18-21

 "Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.  And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you."  Ephesians 4:29-32




Emil Bandy said...

Hearing about pity parties always reminds me of RC Jr and the talk he gave at the Suffiency of Scripture conference....
The primary point was something along the lines of:

"Why do bad things happen to good people?.....

It only happened once, and He submitted to that willingly.... For everyone else, our question should instead be: Why do good things happen to bad people?"

Thinking about that always seems to bring things back to perspective for me....

Shelby Courtney said...

I remember him saying that once, and it is very true. I am so thankful that I don't receive what I actually deserve.

Were you all at the SOS conference?

Emil Bandy said...

No... Sadly not. We really wanted to go, but I'm not quite sure why we weren't able to. We got the CDs though and I was able to listen to them while I worked. (some of them several times over :-) I really liked that conference...... The topics were extremely diverse and thorough as well....

Were ya'll able to go? What did you think of it?

Shelby Courtney said...

We did go and we just loved it! It was the first time I had ever heard Paul Washer. I think the session we went to was Sufficiency of Scripture and the Gospel. It was so good and enormously convicting. I have been a huge fan of Paul Washer's ever since! : )
Have you listened to any of the audio's from the Love the Church conference? I believe that the NCFIC was making them available for free download awhile ago. That was an amazing conference too.

Emil Bandy said...

No I haven't! I will have to download those for sure... I'm always searching for new audio's to listen to! Thank you!! :-)

The first time I heard Paul Washer was when he gave his 'Challenging talk' to the big youth group. (I downloaded it) It was an amazing talk, and I've listened to many, many of his talks since!! (downloading them from SermonAudio.com)

I love how he puts Christ and the gospel at the forefront of all his talks... no matter what his talk is about, he always connects it with the Gospel...... And he KNOWS homeschoolers.... which means he knows what sinful tendencies we have as homeschoolers...

Shelby Courtney said...

I know it. I so appreciate the way he addresses the idols that can be so prevalent in homeschoolers. It is so easy to develop a prideful heart when you think you haven't been tainted by the world, through the influences of the government education system.

mrs m. said...

shelby, this post really spoke to me-----whilst i sit here having a pity party over my demise. :) & emil, love the rc quote---sharing. :)

Shelby Courtney said...

Mrs. Merry, we are praying for your speedy recovery!

(I hope you have made Kelle your own personal slave! : )

Charis said...

Shelby ~ I just discovered your blog and wanted to say thank you for your witness! Thank you also for this article! I needed to read it -- a great reminder! blessings, ~Charis

Shelby Courtney said...

Thank you for your kind words, Charis!

Ashlin said...

I recently awarded you and your blog here! Thanks for writing such biblically sound and edifying posts!

Of A Knight And Fair Maidens 3 said...

Great post Shelby! I was at the RC talk that he said that and yes, he did put things into perspective!

SOS was one of the best conferences yet, we came home and listened to the CDs over and over again!

Love Paul Washer his boldness and love for the Lord.

"I love how he puts Christ and the gospel at the forefront of all his talks... no matter what his talk is about, he always connects it with the Gospel...... And he KNOWS homeschoolers.... which means he knows what sinful tendencies we have as homeschoolers..." Emil, Amen to that!

Shelby, can't wait to meet you at the conference in October!:) If you don't mind I'd like to put a link to this post on our blog.

Connie Mello

Shelby Courtney said...

I agree...that was one of the best conferences ever!! That was my very first taste of Paul Washer, and I have not been able to stop listening to him since!

I cannot wait to see you all in October either!! I am so excited!!

And no, I don't mind if you put a link to this post on your blog! ;)