The Business Card!

It was a cold, rainy morning on a Tuesday when I attended a ministry leaders meeting in Dallas, TX.

I walked into a conference room and sat down with 15-20 ministers

I passed out my business cards to the group including to the one guy that was to my left.

When we exchanged cards, I was humbly surprised by what was on his card.

It simply read: “My card!” I burst into laughter. I couldn’t believe that this guy was carrying a card that simply read “My Card!!”

I didn’t laugh simply because the card hit me comedically. I laughed because I was tapped with a subtle reminder to stay humble and to not think of oneself as greater than anyone else.

Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.”

Philippians 2:3-4 (NKJV)

Interestingly enough, just as Paul was writing about unity in Christ for believers, the lesson that morning during this particular ministry leaders meeting was in fact on unity.

Paul was encouraging Christian believers in Philippi (present-day North Eastern Greece) to live the Christian life through the practical steps of loving one another and looking to the interest of others.

Notice the term, “conceit,” meaning vanity, or empty glory.

The man with the peculiar, yet funny business card delivered an experience that surpassed titles and labels. It was a lesson to remind me that interaction and relationship building with others is more important than just getting my card into people’s hands.


Asking God Hard Questions!

I sometimes catch myself not being totally honest with God about how I feel about Him and my circumstances. And then there are times that God catches me and I have no choice but to be honest.

The second scenario was my most recent experience.

What was a sudden impromptu Bible Study with my wife turned into a very, very long confession that I was struggling to understand something about God that was making me feel a kind of way about my relationship .

Where was God when (insert incident in time) happen?

I could answer that question with ease Biblically and Theologically: pointing out man having a choice, the fallen nature of man, God’s sovreignty, and His ability to take that which was bad to work out for good. But beyond the headiness and academic and spiritual richness of those answers still weighted on me this haunting, glaring reality. It was the question behind the main question.

Why didn’t God just simply step in to interrupt the moment in time? The sexual abuse, the bullying, the toxic family drama, etc?

Again, I remained feeling as though “that’s not good enough.” It should’ve been good enough.

I was angry with myself. I was angry with my mind. I was angry with the feelings and thoughts coming up in my head. I was angry with the enemy using this as a way to throw me off. I was even angry with God.

I was frustrated becuase I thought that I was solid on understanding all of this. How was that not enough.

The hardest choice I had to make was to go to bed that night trusting that God will make it make sense.

The next morning, I woke up, and I began scanning through scriptures. But I was led to do something else too.

I prayed. I put my coffee and tablet down, and I prayed.

I got as honest as I could with God. I confessed that I wanted to have a deeper connection and intimacy with Him. I didn’t want to feel that distance. But, there was more. I even admitted that for the past few days, between what I was reading on Twitter, to what I was watching in the news, the enemy was using it to try and convince me that everything I was believing about God and Christ was somehow foolish. I told God that I was beginning to struggle with disbelief and bitterness. I prayed and told God that I still feel the stings from the wounds of the past.

So…where WAS God exactly!?

Later that day, as I prayed, I decided to simply trust that God would give me an answer, if not now, later. And if not later, or ever, that I would be okay if he simply healed me and strengthened my faith to keep going and not give up.

I even read this blog post written by Kayla Carthel . This quote along with the mention of Isaiah 61:10 stuck out to me:

Isaiah 61:10 is a direct contradiction to all the emotions we experience. When we feel dirty and ashamed, God reminds us that we are clothed in garments of salvation. When we feel exposed and shamed, we are reminded that we are covered in a robe of righteousness. When we feel dirty and ugly and broken, we are told that we are adorned in a beautiful headdress and jewels. Jesus has cleansed us and made us whole. No person or circumstance can change that reality. No person or circumstance can change your identity.”

As I prayed throughout the day, God reminded me of those answers I was easily able to remember but felt was not enough.

I was frustrated becuase I thought that I was solid on understanding all of this. How was that not enough? It wasn’t.

I needed to actually reconnect with God and see Him outside of the box I put Him in…thanks Pastor Parker of Golden Gate church in Dallas for that point back on Sunday.

I was needing relationship.

Then God hit me with something else….

“You have a choice too…you can choose to believe that I will work it out for your good and my Glory!”