I was eating lunch one day and sat beside a number of Church going men (maybe accountability buddies) that were sitting close enough to me to hear most of their conversation.
They had a good conversation. Nothing I would disagree with individually They had what I consider to be a typical conversation for these types of meetings and the conversation turned to politics and how bad the world is. I did not disagree with anything being said whatsoever but I do consider this type of conversation to be pretty typical where we start to critique the world at large.
I realize in the entirety of the conversation I overheard there was not one thing I would disagree with. I was, however, concerned with the general focus of the conversation…. or the centrality of the conversation. Thats why for me the centrality of the Gospel needs to be internalized to me more than externalized.
As I read across several BLOGS and contempalete the conversation I overheard I asked myself why does the conversation always turn external in these conversations. I realize no matter how much scripture we understand there is a large gap between what we know and what do. Here are my theories why this occurs and why we externalize it instead of internalizing it:
1. By externallizing everything it takes the focus off of me and my sins.
2. We just feel better about ourselves when we criticize others or externallize everything.
3. We are afraid of real intimacy and showing people our real selves and we prefer easy intimacy as opposed to real intimacy with people and God.
4. We just like to use the path of least resistance with other people so by externallizing we don’t get our hands dirty with our own issues.
As I reflect on what Paul means when he says that in our weaknesses we find strength I believe that getting “real” about our sin, fears, concerns, etc is the pathway to intimacy with Christ and each other.
As I type this and reflect on my marriage relationship I realize I have been kinda floating relationally with Sue for two or three weeks. Our family dynamic and busyness has changed with our older daughter being home for the summer and the start of soccer for our younger daughter. This long seperation from intimate closeness with my wife (not physical intimacy) has caused me to be short tempered and emotionally tired. A good word is its making me wrestless. I need to have a heart to heart with my wife soon and we need to get “real” with each other. To talk about our fears and concerns and to regain the pathway of deep intimacy and being “real” with each other.