Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Beating Complacency With One Word

Yesterday, we talked about the burden of a normal life. Click here if you did not get a chance to read it. This must be a lesson that God is driving home to me, and I know why. I am beginning to crawl from under that rock, that place where life can be overwhelming. Simple acts have become daunting and I, alone, cannot bring my will into line.

I was reading Deuteronomy 4:25, this morning,

“When you have had children and children’s children, and become complacent in the land, if you act corruptly by making an idol in the form of anything, thus doing what is evil in the sight of the Lord your God, and provoking him to anger,”

I like the fact that this verse does not say, “If you happen to ever find yourself slipping a little into a tiny bit of a rut, then maybe, you might have a problem.” Nope, it says WHEN you have been attending to life as normal and you become complacent, you are going to rebel.


A feeling of uncritical satisfaction with oneself.

You might say to yourself, “Well I definitely don’t feel satisfied.” Me neither. I do find that instead of trying to act my way through these times, I resign to do nothing about my lack of inspiration. When I say that my housework can wait, or writing that article can wait, or even that someone else can volunteer for a while, I am choosing a certain level of satisfaction for the moment. I am not doing the right thing, but I am doing what is comfortable and that is satisfying me in some regard.

The worst part is that my idol was me. In these times, there is no end to the ways that my life wants to destroy me. I am the center, and the center doesn’t feel like it. We discussed, yesterday how laundry becomes this monster that continues to gain strength as we struggle through each load. What about dinner time? That means that I have to figure out food, I cook, I put it on plates, AND I clean it up. Note the word “I”.

Is dinner in itself the enemy? Or, is the context of my responsibilities the problem?

Sea of Galilee

Dinner is simply a boat on a lake. Laundry is another boat off in the distance. Telephone calls to friends are a kayak that meanders by once and a while. The lake is the context of these responsibilities. This lake can be stormy or it can be still.

I am not sure what the water looks like in these burdensome times, perhaps sludgy. That is certainly how I feel on the outside. On the inside it is active, though. My heart is in turmoil. That is the ravenous storm on my lake. The water will not be still because I am choosing this momentary uncritical satisfaction over the work of the Father.

Then I remember what Jesus did to the sea. He calmed it with a word, and not only did he calm it but he rebuked it. Rebuke here is the same word used for rebuking demons. Think about that for a minute. Jesus has complete control, and if invited He can still this water. What I am unable to accomplish with my will and emotions, He can restore with one word.

No more rocking, capsizing boats or kayaks. The lake is still and the context of life regains His peace. We have taken His burden. This burden is light. We move like lightening under it. All things are accomplished that need our attention each day, and He works out the unfinished for our good.

I am so grateful for the honest hearts that I saw here, yesterday. I am so glad to know that I am not alone! Thank you for fighting this fight with me.


  1. This makes me think of years ago, my little son would look up to me and say, "take my hand mommy, I won't do it". I would look at him and know he wanted a partner.
    If I "won't do it", I am being complacent or lazy, but if I look up and place my hand in HIS hand all my excuses vanish. Having a partner that can calm those angry seas or screaming laundry piles with just a word is beyond glorious!
    Thank you for this reminder of HIS love, mercy and compassion for the details of our lives.

  2. wow - great post!! I read your other one too, and this is the perfect follow up! Thank you so much for sharing such wisdom ... I definitely need it! :)


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