There is this local radio station that I listen to sometimes that plays games from time to time with callers who compete to win prizes. One such game they play is called “Country song or it isn’t?” The premise of this game is the person calls in and they are given a song title. The caller then has to guess if the title was made up by the radio personalities or if indeed it is an actual recorded country song. It is a lot harder than you might think. There are some really interesting titles to country songs out there.
The thing that made me think about this game and want to share it with you was this thought that kept going through my mind the last week or so as I answered people’s questions about how life was going these days. The more I explained things to people, the more I began to realize that my life sounds a lot like a bad country song. These last few weeks have been a time of a lot of letting go. We gave away our dog, I finished my job, we moved out of our home, we sold pretty much everything we own, loaded up the truck I drive that I’m borrowing and don’t own, and made the first of probably 4 moves for us in the next 6 months. See what I mean?
However, as I was telling people about this, I always finished this list of seemingly sad things with a statement that usually caught people a little off guard: “I feel so blessed!” Don’t get me wrong. There have definitely been some moments in the last few weeks of a lot of tears and sadness. Most of the tears have been over missing our dog and times of struggling through my worth and identity. However, lately I have been just overwhelmed with the presence of God. I have grown so much and experienced Him so much in our giving things up that it is really beyond description.
In John 3, John the Baptist explains to his disciples how his goal in life is for him to decrease and for Jesus to increase. His disciples are really confused. I’m sure they didn’t sign up to follow someone who talked like this. To follow a rabbi or teacher of that day was a very prestigious thing and they wanted the respected life they signed up for but John said that is not what it is all about. John explained to them that in losing ourselves, we find joy—we find Christ.
I’ve always heard this concept and preached it from time to time but I can honestly say that the more I seem to turn my life over to Christ, the more I feel like He fills it up. Now please hear that I’m far from figuring all this out and I have tons still to give up that I hold on to. I still love my pride and trust way too much in my expectations and myself. However, this life is requiring a lot of trust and it is stretching us in new, and at times painful, ways but the more we submit and give up things for Him, the more we just keep getting overwhelmed by Him.
I’m not telling everyone who reads this that the secret to life is following in our literal footsteps. For some of you, maybe it is but I know for some it isn’t. However, what I am telling you is that I’m learning some of what John was saying. I’m learning that we can trust Him. I’m learning that He is always calling all of us to give up our lives to Him in some new way and He is right there ready to fill us as we empty ourselves out. Taste and see that the Lord is good.
My “country song of a life” is beginning to sound like the greatest praise song I’ve ever sung. All glory to God.