Issues Anyone?

There are very few people who don’t have issues. Well ok, ALL people have them at times. And one way or another, for good or ill they “share the wealth” of those particular issues. “Good”? From rotten stuff? How does that work? Compost comes to mind, but heh, read on if you please.

Some call them “hang ups”. Some refer to them as “life-dominating sins”. Some call them “my demons”.

I’m convinced all of those can be accurate descriptions but however you try to ignore, downplay, defend or wrestle with them as sure as the earth revolves around the sun these “gravitational pulls” show up.

Some surface daily, some maybe weekly or less but like holidays on the calendar you can pretend are not there, people around you notice what time it is.

Many years ago I had come to hate me. In a song lyric I wrote “Hating who you are and what you’ve made of yourself, not forgiving yourself for you. What was I trying to prove, running from You.”

A much older song, in my view one of the most honest ever sung in any church congregation states “Prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love”. Those lines appear in the 18th century “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” -but this humble confessional admission doesn’t show up until halfway through the fourth verse. It often takes we proud, distracted, even tunnel-visioned humans a long time to confront our unfaithfulness.

Yet “There is a Friend that sticks closer than a brother.” There is a “Hound of heaven” Who pursues us, like it or not, believe it or not. There is a Father who searches the horizon with love for the prodigal.

I find my issues are a very real part of what propels me toward Him.

Sad and sick, sometimes even disgusting how it takes issues we can no longer avoid to bring us to our knees but there it is.

But there’s good news, even in the practical:

The back door will still get you inside the house!

Today, if you like me and the rest of humans on the planet are sick and tired, have had enough of yourself and are ready to surrender I suggest surrendering to the One and Only risen Savior Who alone conquers issues, the first and most monumental being that we are loved and desired whether or not we believe it.

I know “it’s impossible to please God without faith” as the writer of Hebrews says, and I also know Paul tells us “every person has the measure of faith” and elsewhere that even faith itself is a gift from God. Yet there is a sense in which whether or not you have faith you are loved and valued by God, HE STILL LOVES AND VALUES YOU.

I fully get giving up, throwing in the towel, just deciding “I just cannot change” and that for example, “My addiction/s, my nature, personality, dna is killing me and self-destruction is my true and inescapable destiny”. Believe me, I’ve been there, done that.

So what’s the second most amazing reality in this thread?

There is no issue God is incapable of helping us overcome. One day at a time. One choice at a time. Each new day, fresh mercies- and therefore I have hope.

For all the messes I made prior to my walk with Jesus right to this moment I continue to face sin and temptation and at times stray. Thoughts at the very least, words next, behavior and relational blunders, what the Book of God calls “sin”, wrong-doing. Certainly non-positive stuff, issues that I like everyone reading this faces are part of our life journey. But they don’t have to be (nor determine) our destination!

He calls us to “Follow” HIM. As we do, the issues become stepping stones on our path to God.

As always, thanks for stopping by! -Glenn