A Sure Thing {Knuckleballs, Normalcy, & Something Bigger}

I’ve been falling back on a sure thing.  You see, the last couple of months I’ve experienced more than my share of uncertainty.  I have a boy who will graduate high school next week.  Today will be my last day at a job I occupied for nearly five years.  I have a mom who is fighting cancer, a nephew in Afghanistan, and a father-in-law recovering from a brain injury.   Everything in my life is changing.

Like stepping into darkness, change is unsettling.  Disruptive.

Change has thrown a knuckle ball to all I call ‘normal.’   In place of normal there are only more questions than answers.  Yesterday’s certainties are today’s  unknowns.  My kid throws a knuckle ball and when I sit in the stands during a game, the one thing I hear when he throws that pitch is, “Nasty junk.  What was that?”  The pitch rarely gets hit.  It just leaves everyone standing there looking dumbfounded.  Kind of like I find myself in life at the moment.

Yet here is what I know, disrupted doesn’t have to mean disturbed. 

There’s a calm; an assurance that everything is okay.  Well, more so, there is a confidence that I will be okay, even when everything around me is anything but.

Instead of fighting or failing, I’ve been falling back on a sure thing:  Humility.

Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you…Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.”  Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow.  You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.  Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this and that.”  But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil.  (James 4:10, 13-16)

Here is how humility has been a serving me as a sure thing in the midst of much uncertainty:

  • There is very little that I am able to control at the moment, but I can choose {a thousand times a day, if need be}  to acknowledge that God has complete control.  I am “in the presence of the Lord” who is not only big, but is large and in charge!  He has everything handled, and isn’t needing any assistance from me.
  • My plans have changed, but God’s plans for me have not.  Humbly, I accept, He has a better plan.  Only the proud insist on their own way.  Pride will scream, “Hurry!  Figure this out!”  Humility calmly counsels, “Wait on Him.”  Surrendering my way to His way is a daily infusion of humility.  God is bigger than my normalcy.
  • God never inflates His perception of who I am; only we humans are inclined to make more of ourselves than we ought.  There is a keen perception alignment that one in humble circumstances experiences.  When God stirs up ‘normal’ and scatters it with the one brush of His fingertip, humility helps you accept that this things called ‘normal’ wasn’t of your own making and you’re not entitled to keeping it.  Rather than making much of self, humility reminds you it’s best to make much of the One who never changes yet who is always changing us.
  • Humility makes space for me to be thankful for what I have {and had}.  A high view of God, and a sober view of self, is protecting me from resentment, regret, and ingratitude.  That I have had anything “to lose” at all is a testimony to God giving me something in the first place.  Thanking Him for these things doesn’t let me forget {as we’re apt to do} that I didn’t earn them–I didn’t deserve anything I have.
  • Most importantly, humility has put me in the right position for worship.  In scattering all that was ‘normal.’ is it possible that God has actually been clearing away all of the distractions to a single-hearted worship?  When all the trinkets you’ve been desperately grasping fall away, you may just find the greatest treasure of all.  Humility is free of entitlement, greed, and over-inflated self-worth.  Humility already has me on your knees,  empty hands opened.  Might as well worship while I’m there.

Disruption can make way for devotion.  When something falls away something bigger, something better, can rise to a greater place in your life.  Every act of worship begins with an acknowledgment that there is something/some one greater than the one worshiping.

Is your life disrupted?  Are you, too, needing a sure thing?  Humble yourself.  Acknowledge a big God.  Let Him be bigger than your circumstances, bigger than the changes, and yes, even bigger than you.  Embrace humility today.

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