Thursday, July 24, 2008

choosing sides

I’ve been struggling lately with…less than Christ-like thoughts. I’m not sure what’s come over me, but all this anger and frustration and guilt can’t be good for me. Every day I question what I’m doing and why I make the choices I do, why I give in almost without a fight, and every day I resolve to be better the next day. Then the next day I just get disappointed again. Last night I was reading an old conference talk and the recommendation was given to replace thoughts you don’t want with a positive thought, song, or story. Apparently it’s not enough to just want to think, or say, or be something different—you actually have to replace the negative habit with a positive habit. Novel idea, I know. So I’ve been thinking off and on today about what I can do or sing or yell when I’m faced with a situation likely to bring out the worst in me.

My old stand-by song, the one I use to rid my mind of all other annoying songs when I’m trying to sleep, is “I know you; I walked with you once upon a dream.” I have no idea why that one works for me, but it works like a charm every time I want to banish another tune from repeating itself in my head. Somehow I don’t think that one is going to work for this situation. Nothing seems to fit, actually. And then I read through another church talk this afternoon and came across this scripture:

"Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts…This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; . . . that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel" (1 Samuel 17:45–46).

The talk was about standing up for what is right and always being on the Lord’s side of the line, which, eh, yes, applies here. But for me it was like my own, personal battle cry. Some days I do feel like I’m being attacked with swords and spears and I find great comfort in this imagery that I am armed with the strength of the Lord of hosts. And that I can overcome. And that I can succeed. And that my resolve will be strengthened until those particular swords and spears are more like toothpicks and Q-tips. Today I will be a fighter.


Bart said...

Well done!

The other one I like about choosing sides: "And Joshua said unto all the people [of Israel], . . . choose you this day whom ye will serve; . . . but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" (Josh. 24:2, 15). It's quoted a lot, but it never fails to make me want to be on the right side.

Good luck! You can do it! Janssen & I are here fer ya'!

housewife said...

Wow. That is awesome. I hope things are going well for you (i.e. I hope your scripture is working). I've been having a hard time controlling my temper lately so your post gave me some good ideas.

Britt said...

I love your analogy of toothpicks and Q-tips. I'm glad you found some inspiration to help you out.