"In order for God to entrust a person with their dreams coming true, an awful lot has to take place in their character." Eldredge
John Eldredge said this in a Ransomed Heart podcast this morning and it clarified many things for me. If I am completely honest, I find that I am constantly flirting with a blend of:
- narcissism - inordinate fascination with oneself.
- hedonism - devotion to pleasure as a way of life.
I was created to clearly communicate a diluted and confused gospel message to generations of discouraged and disillusioned men of God. I want the freedom from all encumbrances to speak and write at my leisure to fulfill what I know God clearly put me here to do. I spend a lot of energy and time fantasizing about what a life would look like where I was permissioned to do only that.
I used to dream of my marriage being a certain way. A life where my children and wife would all behave and appear in a way that I believed was right. In reality, wounding and motive completely clouded my good heart for them. I needed them to look and behave in a way that would bring me glory, make me feel successful, and right all the wrongs of a destructive and unfulfilling childhood I had experienced. Not only is that impossible, the real work that needed to predate all others, was on my character and heart.
Facing a failed marriage and family, I turned inward and allowed him to do a deep excavation of my heart and soul. Focusing on God's refinement of my identity as a man and learning to seek only His validation, changed almost everything in the way I lived and loved. His restoration of my family and marriage has a cornerstone firmly planted during that season. While that will always be a work in progress, our family continues to experience an incredible tailwind of His clarity and favor.
Back to current state. I want to rescue the hearts of men and bringing clarity through communication is clearly the call on my life. But rather than focusing on character restoration and allowing Him to do the deep work of ransoming my heart and soul that would unleash opportunities to do just that, I find that I spend too much time focused on my own fulfillment, crafting experiences and desired adventure in my mind. Like an unbridled child, I want what I want when I want it. I really desire to be fulfilled more than I desire to be restored.
Father, give me a restoration mindset.
Let me operate more fully in the tyranny of the transformed life.
Give me a heart for character refinement.
Let me rest in your good heart and your timing.
Calm the less wild lovers that my spiritual hedonism has me lust and long for.
Break and remake me into the man your desire.
Give me the joy that only comes from the fulfillment and validation you provide.
Help me to find You as my "more than enough."