Thursday, July 24, 2008

Falling Forward

I seem to be at somewhat of a turning point in my life. I've been out of school for several years now, but I'm about to be going back. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous about this. I'm excited about it, because I have been wanting to go back, but I guess I'm nervous because it's a new school (I'd went to a different one previously) and I'm still not convinced that the degree I'm going back for is the one I want. As if that wasn't enough to cause me some doubts, I may also have to quit my job in order to go. All of my classes will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I know I'll be able to change my work schedule to be off on those days, but that also means I'll have to work the rest of the days of the week and will have no days off for at least two or three months this fall. I think I can probably handle this, but I know I'm usually at my weakest when tired. It's when I'm tired that I most often give into temptations. I'm not trying to be pessimistic or negative in my thinking, but prepared. So, I've sort of mixed feelings about getting back in school.

Another turning point may be a little more spiritual in nature. I've given a lot of thought about stepping aside from a few of the leadership roles I've had at my church. I'm not yet convinced about doing this, but it's just something that's been on my mind for a while now. I get so frustrated with working on certain matters alongside some of the people at my church. I've found that when there is a conflict, I have trouble separating that from what should be the true purposes of church. I let the conflict consume me more than I should and cause me to have harsh feelings for what truly are really good people. I guess I hold a grudge. Because of that, I've seriously considered stepping aside. I've thought a lot about what church should be about and what my focus should be while there. Lately, I don't think I've been thinking of church in the right way. I've been thinking too heavily upon some of the conflicts and blocking out true worship of Jesus Christ among fellow saints. I've been thinking too negatively about the church. And so I know I either need to step aside, or figure out some other way of putting aside those negative feelings. Either choice is a hard decision to make. I've struggled some with knowing what God wants me to do about this. I feel like if I stay in the leadership roles I'm in, I'll be able to make a positive difference for a lot of people, but struggle to keep my focus on Jesus. But if I do step aside, I feel like I might feel closer to Christ and those in my church, but that I won't be able to do as much for others. So, there's my dilemma. I'm not sure which decision would bring about the most good. I just know I can't stay in this current state.

The last few weeks I have struggled a great deal with anger. Not just anger, but stress and worry as well. I've been bothered by things at church, at home, at work, and it's just all sort of overwhelmed me. I feel like there's no refuge or place I can get away. A friend at work recently told me that I'm one of those people who just bottles everything up and then finally explodes and goes off on everyone. I can see that in myself. I do tend to bottle up my emotions a great deal of the time. It's hard for me to let others know how I'm thinking or feeling. This blog has been an exercise for me in overcoming that. But I do tend to hold onto my emotions a great deal more than I should sometimes. I get frustrated with people who make dumb decisions and won't listen to any reasoning, and it angers me when their wrong decisions effect me in some negative consequence, or effects others in the same way. I find it so hard to give these sorts of feelings over to God, or to express them in healthy ways. When I get angry or frustrated or stressed, I tend to find myself not caring so much about what sins I commit. I begin to distance myself from God and others. I begin cussing like a sailor, which is something I really detest. I can't stand hearing that sort of talk from others, and it kills me how often I tend to just blurt out one of those little four-letter words without even thinking about it. I cringe practically every time I do. And I find myself giving into so many other things as well. It's just that I have a hard time working through my emotions. That's something I'm certainly going to be working more on. But in working through these things I'm hoping to improve my spiritual life some. I don't want to be holding any grudges and distancing myself from the church and those in it.

So, in short, I guess I could say that life is tough and sad and exciting and joyous and all the rest. I don't imagine that's a surprise to anyone reading. There are ups and downs to everything in this life. I guess the trick is to keep falling forward and to always place trust in God. I'm sure if I let Him, He'll lead me exactly where I'm supposed to go, and everything will work out as it should.

1 comment:

Mikey said...

It's funny how, when something's "not right" in one part of your life, that dissonance bleeds over into other parts of your life. The unfortunate thing is, you can't "stop the bleeding" until you've figured out the "not right" part and made that right again. But you have to remember that, in time, you will be able to get that all right again. Best of luck.