We have a man at CPx this week who is from Oklahoma….that sad fact aside (; ) ), he has incredible wisdom and I wanted to share some of his thoughts with you. But to make this a bit more enjoyable, I am adding some fun recent pictures of the Proeger family’s time here in Africa.
So here’s what he said today that I wanted to explore a bit….
“God is not as excited about sincerity as we are. He is excited about faithfulness, which is sincerity walked out over time.” Ken Primrose
Wow! I felt this summed up a lie that we so often believe very well.
So I thought of how many conversations I have had with others and with myself about whether or not sincerity was involved in a decision. I remember a college student who said he didn’t want to worship God when he didn’t feel like it because it was inauthentic and insincere. I asked him if this was how he decided whether or not to go to school or work each morning when he woke up.
I understand the sentiment he was trying to communicate because I have had the same holdup so many times. I remember going to church as a teenager and feeling as if it would be entirely hypocritical to worship God next to my mom when I had been disrespectful to her during the week. In some ways, that was a legitimate concern as Jesus himself tell us to make things right with each other before we offer our worship to God. But it is not insincere to worship God just because we aren’t having an emotional feeling which leads our worship.
The truth is that most of the beautiful accomplishments we have in life take LOTS and LOTS of acting out of our faithfulness over time. Prayer, worship, loving our spouses, loving our children and exercise are all things which take consistency separate from emotions or feelings.
My kids don’t need me to “feel” like loving them with my time and attention, they need my time and attention. Certainly the feelings are important and will be there oftentimes, but they are not the critical component we think they are.
Think of how absurd the “sincerity” assumption is for just a second. Do we consider an olympian “insincere” because they didn’t always feel like running, swimming or playing? Do we think of a single mom who provides for her family by going to work faithfully every day as “insincere” because they didn’t wake up every day wanting to go to work?
Why do we take such a bizarre assumption into worship, prayer and service to God? As if it is the one area of life where we must “feel” something before we act in way that is proper?
Do you see what I mean? If we tried to live our other relationships like this, they would all die. If we tried to take this attitude into any other realm of life, we would be seen as flakes who are entirely undependable and lacking in integrity and character.
Isn’t that funny? So obvious once it is exposed eh? Our goal to have “integrity” in terms of sincerity and actions is actually lacking in integrity itself! We don’t have “integrity” by not doing something when we aren’t “feeling” it. It just makes us lazy and somewhat worthless as members of society, friends, sons, daughters, husbands, wives, and employees, employers, etc etc.
Ok, I have made my point, but I have some very good news! Life has a strange phenomenon that manifests itself time and time again. Sometimes we feel something and then we act and sometimes we act in a certain way and then we feel something. That’s it! It is so simple, but we forget it so easily!
Have you ever sort of gone through the motions with your spouse for a date, a holiday or a birthday and found that somewhere in the process of “going through the motions” your emotions caught up with your motions? I know I have! (sorry Ceci, but I have already told you this!)
I hope you see why this is good news! Man, that’s an understatement, it is actually GREAT news! God sees your faithfulness itself as a longterm expression of sincerity! Many of you let the enemy accuse you of “insincerity” because you don’t “feel” a certain way all of the time, but the truth is, you are expressing your sincerity in your obedience!
So today as you go about your work, your time with your husband, wife or children, rejoice that God sees your faithfulness and is pleased! Ask Him to meet you in the place of mundanity (seriously, it’s a word!) with emotions that match the greatness of that in which you are engaged.
Your time of cooking dinner, doing dishes, reading to your children, going to work, shopping for groceries, sharing with an unbelieving friend etc. are all GREAT things! God can meet you there with the joy and glory of that thing you are doing.
But even if He doesn’t, your obedience is pleasing and beautiful. You are investing in a longterm treasure which will bring fruit for generations for eternity!