I’m taking the time to write this because I’m quite bothered by some of the messages I’ve been receiving and some comments I’ve seen regarding the articles I wrote. I write these articles to help remind us, including myself, to focus on the valuable things, on what are truly important, and not to aim our attention, our thoughts, our affection, and actions, on shallow, meaningless, and ultimately unfulfilling pursuits. I would hate for my readers to enjoy a post, feel moved, have butterflies in their stomach, and be inspired – for a moment – yet miss the point of the message.
I don’t want you to have a good meal, not chew it properly, and wonder why you have digestion problems. I’m hoping you’ll catch the message, think through it, even think critically of it, and, if you agree, use whatever emotion it has elicited to motivate you to action.
If I conjure emotions in our souls, that we are valuable, that we are loved, that our lives have meaning, yet do not urge us to fight for our treasures, to stop trading away our love for pride, for religion, for rebellion, or for validation, I would be doing a disservice.
Principles must be applied for them to take effect. Emotions must be channeled toward truly valuable things for beautiful things to bloom.
So when I write about crushes, and about how creating unrealistic ideals and fantasies are dangerous, what I’m really saying is this:
You have something amazing waiting for you to fight for. Stop trading them away for the vicarious, for the temporary, for the easy pleasure. You’ll ruin your ability to enjoy the real thing. You’ll be too full with junk to accept good things. Worse, you’ll be so used to junk you won’t be able to recognize a good thing even if it’s right in front of you. And even worse, you’ll actually have an appetite for junk.
When I talk to people defending fast-food over a healthy meal, I just stay quiet. I cannot convince someone who has an appetite for junkfood that there’s healthier and more satisfying food out there.
In the same way, I’ve found it very very difficult to convince others that many of the songs, movies, books, and mindsets our culture has adopted is crap. It’s rotten crap. The reason why it’s difficult is because there’s an appetite for this, and very little appetite for the noble, for the praiseworthy, for the excellent.
No wonder we have so many issues. Eat junk and your body will get sick. Fill your soul with junk and you’ll have a sick mind, sick emotions, and a weak will. You’ll be spoiled.
If we are spoiled, if we’re full of junk, we will spew junk on our relationships. From the abundance of our spoiled heart we will speak and act filth.
Most of the ugly stuff my life has produced was born out of planting the wrong seeds in my soul. Seeds of bitterness, of pride, of anger, of lust, small, tiny, unrecognizable seeds, taking root in my heart and blossoming into piranha plants wanting to chomp me. I do not want to intentionally plant anymore seeds. I do not want to leave the garden of my heart vulnerable to just any gardener.
When we consume media, we consume messages, we plant seeds in our soul, and depending on the gardener, you’re either going to have a beautiful garden or a dry, dying desert.
So let me give you the simple points of my last few blogs:
1. The Crush – STOP setting up false ideals. Start pointing your energy, your thoughts, your emotions, and your actions on the truly valuable people in your life, particularly your family and the people who live in the same house as you. That actor or actress, that “hottie”, that superstar, that athlete, that writer, that speaker, they have not done an ounce of what these people in your home have done for you. So start giving credit to where it is due and start serving them.
I’ve gotten some messages saying “I love you” or “you’re my crush” or my “friends have a crush on you”, and it irks me that after working so hard on that post, you go and make me the unrealistic idol. I know myself better than anyone, and there’s nothing impressive about me. I use the toilet just like everyone else, but bomb it unlike anyone else. I’m prone to the same temptations as any other guy, and as any other human being. I know how ugly I can be, and I’m telling you now, making me your crush shows lack of intelligence.
The real reason why I don’t want you giving me your affection is because I’ll fail you. I can’t save you. I can’t feed you. (I can barely feed myself.) I don’t even know your name. How am I going to validate you?
Instead, throw everything you have at the One who loves you completely, who knows your name, and who can save you. Give your mind, will, and emotions, your strength to Jesus.
2. This Is Who You Are – Come see what I see clearly. I wrote this to define a new identity for a woman. That a woman is beautiful, special, wise, strong, irreplaceable, priceless, free, and loved, and I defined in detail what each truly means – which is very different from the definition of popular culture which was reflected in another article of mine Don’t Be A B!tch.
Today’s woman is pressured to walk a tightrope between being bitchy and slutty enough to be sexy yet sophisticated, dignified, intelligent, strong, and purposeful. But you can’t be both. I simply wanted to say, “Get off that tight-rope.” Everyone falls at some point, and it’s either they fall into rebellion and live the “slut life” or into cultural respectability which is a nice word for the pride of life. Either way it’s an insecure place to be. Besides, what makes one a slut? One partner? Two partners? 3? 10? 20?
Actually, technically speaking, anyone one who trades themselves for another value (such as money or position) is a slut. And we’re all guilty of that.
Instead, there’s the way of love. What’s the way of love? It’s not so much a path, but a state of being. It is walking anywhere and everywhere embraced by the One who loves you most. Who cares if people think you deserve Him? He thinks you’re the greatest. Who cares if people think He should be chasing someone better? You’re already His best. Who cares if He seems far away or hidden? You already know He’s planning your next monthsery. (I seriously dislike that word.)
So don’t live in the pressure that marketing tries to put on you. That’s their job, and your job is to be wise. Your job is to run to your Lover and let Him fill you. He will fill you with more than just butterflies, He will fill you with purpose, with life, with joy, with strength, and with love.
As a guy, writing this series helped me learn something that is natural to girls, to desire to depend on the One who loves you. It helped me see what God sees clearly in me, the person He loves.
I hope I didn’t sound too harsh. But more than that, I hope you don’t miss the points of my articles. The point is this, value the right things. Chase the right things. Stop trading away your life and the treasures of your life, especially your most important relationships. You don’t have to wait for your parents’ funeral to realize you should have served them more. Serve them now. You don’t have to wait for a divorce to realize you have to work on your marriage. Work on it now. You don’t have to wait for your friendships to collapse, or for your employees to leave you, or whatever. You don’t have to wait for loss to realize you shouldn’t have taken things for granted. You can really chase and protect truly valuable things now.
Don’t miss the point. The point is a WHO not a what. It’s not a principle. It’s not a place. It’s not an achievement. It’s a person. That person is God, yet more amazingly, His point is a person as well: it’s you.