Saturday, February 19, 2011

Something's gotta give (and no, this is not a reference to that really awkward Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton movie)

This last month of school, more specifically the last 2 weeks, has been really busy. 5 exams and one full-metal gold crown later, I've made it through unscathed. (At least I hope...still waiting to see how one exam and that gold crown turned out, haha.) I'm really thankful for a break, even it is a short one. I'm glad I can have one weekend where I don't have to worry about studying or about an impending project due date. Last week on top of studying for a Pathology test, I came down with a cold, the likes of which my immune system hasn't had to battle in years. So as you can imagine, with the hours spent buried in my notes and the hours spent working in the lab this past week, I haven't had time for much else.

Unfortunately much else includes time spent with the Lord. It amazes me that I can still get so busy that I just brush off spending time in the Word when I get up in the morning. Or before I go to bed at night.  But I won't think twice about staying up until 3:30 learning a list of hundreds of drugs and what they do, only to get up less than 3 hours later and head off to take an exam on said list of drugs. I won't think twice about skipping a morning of class for the sake of my body fighting off a cold, but I still have trouble getting up a mere 30 minutes earlier than I normally would and opening up my Bible or spending time in prayer. Something's gotta give, and God doesn't like it when that something is him.

This is something I've battled time and time again, but it's a battle that I've got to keep fighting if my relationship with God really is what matters most to me. I did really well last summer and last fall about getting up 2 hours before class and spending time with God every morning. Somehow, the weekends slipped through the cracks, but for the most part, I began every day in the Word. Even this semester started off well, but then it was so dark when I woke up and it was so cold, I just couldn't make myself get out of my warm bed. Enough with the excuses. Maybe I need to switch to nights and give that another try. I'm much more alert at night and more likely to stay up later than I am to wake up early. But where's the real sacrifice in that? I've just gotta figure out my new battle strategy and roll with it. I don't want these last few weeks to become the norm for me. So if you're reading this, I would really appreciate your prayers. I'm open to suggestions too. Accountability and encouragement have always been a vital part of my walk with Christ, and I'm so grateful that God has blessed me with brothers and sisters who have been there to help me fight. You all are awesome. Anyway.....just wanted to give you a piece of what's been on my mind this week. Get it?? Piece of my the title of my blog, only different?? Clever, right?? ;)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I'm not ok with ordinary

My world got rocked tonight at the Post. I love it/hate it when that happens. Kyle Idleman spoke to us about "Advancing the Kingdom", which basically boils down to missions. I can't tell you how many times I've heard sermons, devotions, and Sunday school lessons about missions, but tonight God decided to grab my shoulders and give 'em a good shake. Tonight I realized that I've become complacent with just living an ordinary life, or the American dream if you will. There's nothing wrong with wanting to help others and provide for my family that God will hopefully bless me with someday- those are both really noble goals. And I also hope to use dentistry on mission trips to help reach people in need someday as well. But why have I been so concerned with the future? I often find myself asking God what His will is for my life....will I get married? Who will my wife be? Will I have kids? Where will I end up practicing dentistry? Notice a theme? Those are all questions that deal with the future. So what about the here and now? Everything I pray about right now deals with school, family and friends, people who are sick, relationship stuff....pretty typical, everyday stuff. My life right now is just ordinary. I'm not ok with that. God's not ok with that. Why am I not actively seeking opportunities to minister to my classmates and the other several hundred students at ULSD? Why am I not sharing the Gospel? Why am I ok with being ordinary when God wants me to be extraordinary? Why am I not willing to do what it takes to be the person God wants me to be? Why am I not praying that God would use me however He sees fit? Why do I put limits on what I ask God so that I get the answers that I'm ok with? Why am I asking so many questions? Haha....moving on. To be honest I think I'm scared. I'm scared that God might tell me to pack up and move to Asia. Or Africa. Oh, I'd be ok with going on a mission trip for a couple of weeks. The point is, whether or not God is calling me to move overseas, I should be willing to go if He wants me to. I should be willing to do whatever it takes for the sake of the Gospel. That's what it means to be extraordinary. Now, it doesn't have to be something extreme, like moving overseas. It could be as simple as asking my classmates how I can be praying for them. That simple question could open so many doors. God can use me in so many ways here in Louisville. After all, He has me here for a reason and I believe that reason is to share the Gospel with the people I live life with everyday- friends, classmates, future patients. God may not want me to move overseas, but I should be ok with that possibility because God will break me down until I am. I don't want to miss out on the work that God is doing or the work that he has planned. I've sinned for too long by not truly living out His will. It will take some time I'm sure, but that's something I'm going to change. Ordinary just doesn't cut it anymore.