Monday, December 19, 2011

Philippians 2:14

I feel like the devil is nipping at my heels these days.

I am irritable, easily stressed, and feeling kind of down. And for no apparent reason*. I'm also going through one of those phases where I am being really hard on myself, and not at all in a productive way.

I've been praying for humility, so that my faults won't cause me such grief. So that I won't focus so incredibly much on myself and what's wrong with me and on vain worries. I really need to look outside of myself more.

Great start, huh? This post is all about me!

Well, since it's already too late, here's something else about me, that really isn't about me at all. I saw a Bible chapter and verse on the back of a truck the other day on I-95 (Philippians 2:15), and when I looked it up I thought it was surely for me! (Because, after all, the entire reason that company printed that verse on its truck was for ME to see it one day..).

So that you may become blameless and pure, "children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation." Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.

At first I thought, how cool! I've been stressed that this culture is going to hell in a hand-basket and this is telling us to hold on and be an example, a shining star! Oh, but not so fast. I looked immediately before it, at verse 14, which is part of the same sentence, and saw this (emphasis my own)...

Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, "children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation." Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.

Of course. THAT is what I needed to hear. I have been doing my fair share of grumbling and arguing lately. I can't seem to stop myself. It really made me realize that grumbling and arguing, speaking negatively, acting ugly, it's all a pretty serious sin. I guess I tend to brush that off as a lesser offense. Not enough to get me in the confessional right away. But no. If doing things without grumbling and arguing can make us blameless and pure in front of God, then doing things with grumbling and arguing must make us impure and with blame. Oh, that is me. I am not shining like a star at the moment. And I'm no better than the rest of the warped and crooked generation. I'm so focused on them that I haven't noticed how much I'm offending God myself.

So I really did need to read that. And while I don't think that Bible verse was referenced on that truck just for me, I do think there's a chance God had me drive by it right then for very good reason. He knows I'm definitely not opening up my Bible lately. He had to plaster it right in front of me one way or another. 

There's really so much to be joyous about and thankful for, and I am. I have so many happy, amazing parts of my day that I hate when the devil creeps in and tempts me into doubt and grumbling and irritability. I've been trying (and usually failing) to be better these last few days. Hopefully I can break my bad habits.

*I'm blaming it, at least partly, on the Prometrium.


  1. Are you sure we aren't twins separated at birth? Wait, I'm way too old to be your twin. But boy, I needed to see that verse. Oh, have I been nasty lately.

  2. Thanks for sharing that! I think we probably could all use that as a reminder now and again! I have been in a little funk lately too.

  3. I needed to hear that. I've been doing a lot of mumbling and grumbling myself.

  4. Not to try to give you a free pass or anything, but when my hormones are messed up or I'm struggling with depression/anxiety, I get the same exact way. It's sometimes uncontrollable. I have found that a good purging confession helps tremendously, because there is almost always some kind of ugly root lodged in my heart somewhere that contributes to the depression and needs to get pulled out. But that's just me anyway!

    LOVE that verse.

  5. Were you writing about ME??? Because I could have posted this same thing. I have so much to be thankful awesome husband of almost 11 years, 2 precious miracles, a house with a roof (that leaks...) and a 2005 mini van (bought because our 2001 died...literally...when we were 600 miles from home over Thanksgiving) and a million dollars in debt to pay over my lifetime.
    Ok, so I started off being thankful and it just goes into grumbling about my problems in the same sentence.
    I need to try harder!!!

    Ok, so I started this post with

  6. I think it's great you are working on this, but if it helps at all, I think most of us are in the same boat! I struggle to be selfless only to realize my "project" to "make myself less selfless" is, of course, entirely self-focused hahaha. I reaaallly struggle with the moods, the grumbling etc. Dh gets the worst of it, so this Christmas I am making a point to truly put him *above* myself (in other words: fairness is NOT the goal - not that he would ever intentionally be unfair anyway but life can be), and it has helped. I am so much more pleasant (because for me, the grumbling kicks in when I don't get what I perceived to be "mine" or yes, when my pride is hurt). Sigh.

  7. That is one of the hardest verses to live by!! I always think "Really, God? EVERYTHING???"

  8. I so know how you feel. I find myself being negative, then I feel guilty for it, then I get angry at myself...and then back to being negative! Grrrr!!! I have seen so many families who need so much this holiday season. I see babies with sad faces, not enough food in their bellies, let alone presents under the tree (and these are the lucky babies who live in THIS country, not to mention those starving and suffering in war torn countries!). I don't know why these images of pain have stuck with me, but I carry them every day with me. And I get sick to my stomach. Then I look at my home, my family, our blessings. And I just can't help but pull myself out of my funk. And then, even more, I want to do MORE and better. Because if not me, with all these blessings, then who? I am trying...I have my moments though, as we all do. It's ok. It's part of being human! The important thing is we stay present and mindful and are always putting energy into become better...and I KNOW that is what you are I hope you can accept yourself as who you are, while also striving to be better. It's a delicate balance!

  9. This is exactly what I needed to read today! Thanks so much for sharing this.

    We went through a rough patch a few months back where there was a lot of bickering and fighting. I was desperate and asked God to help us and I am happy to say things are much better now. Keep praying and trust in God to help you both. It works!

  10. Aaaaand...for that same reason God had me read this post! :)

  11. I have been a long time lurker (since fall 2009!) on your blog, but have only commented once or twice. However, I *needed* this post. I always tend to grumble about everything. You're right, it is a serious sin, at least it is when you do it again and again. Thank you!

  12. Oh yes, I needed this post also! Very inspirational!

  13. What a beautiful reflection and post. It spoke to me! I am also a major grubler and can be nasty at times (especially to DH). I am becoming more aware of it but it is so hard to stop years of behavior that is so ingrained in me. But, I do notice that when I don't respond in a nasty way and just offer it up then life is more peaceful. Go figure! Have a blessed Advent, K!!

  14. Yes! I am one of the ones that needed to read this too!!! My hubby and I have been bickering/fighting over stupid stuff alot lately and I'm guilty of raising my voice and getting irritated. Yeowch! This is my kick in the pants to get my bad self under control. You're motivating a lot of ladies with this post!