What makes us sad or glad?

February 6, 2007 at 4:49 pm 3 comments

With time to think about such things I gave some thought this morning to the things that make me sad and those that make me glad and the relative value of each. I participated in the exercise because I thought it might be a fair barometer of where I really was in my relationship with the Father.

When I feel sadness, where does it come from?  Do I feel sad because my love for Jesus is not what it should be?  Am I sad because my prayer life is mediocre at best? Do I find myself sad because my heart is not moved with compassion toward the poor and broken?  Am I down because of the tragic loss of life in Iraq?

Or do I find myself sad because I no longer have the respect of certain people, my financial life is not what it used to be, I am afraid for the future or I can’t seem to lose the weight I need to?

There is a good kind of sadness that has the potential to bring change and there is a sadness that is self-centered and changes nothing.

On the other hand what had made me glad in recent days?  The reality that there are brothers and sisters in the faith that care about me and show it?  Did I find joy in knowing that the Father loves me without condition?  Was my heart made glad through a small victory over inherent selfishness?

Or was the source of my glad heart the Colts victory in the Super Bowl, the great sun we were finding in the California desert, my new Ipod or my trip to Disneyland?  Again, having a glad heart can either be life enhancing or selfish.

Until we as followers of Jesus submit ourselves to the reality that the life we have always wanted comes only though death, that we will only find the light when we are in the darkness, when we face the truth that unless the seed falls into the ground and dies it will not grow, that to lose our life is the only way to find it and that brokenness and failure is the place the Father comes to look for us, our hearts will always be made sad or glad by the wrong things.

The call of Jesus is to break away from the lives we have gotten used to living, lives that are ruled by our desire for security, pleasure and power and into the knowledge that those pursuits are what hold us back from recognizing how desperately we all need the Father’s mercy and grace and how  inadequate these desires are to bring the gladness we want or to drive away the selfish sadness that permeates much of life.

When we who follow Jesus are made sad or glad by appropriate things “then the limitless power of the Holy Spirit will be unleashed with astonishing force upon the church and the world.”  We will be sad and glad for the right reasons and life will have the meaning and purpose we want it to have.


Entry filed under: Christianity, Faith, Thoughts.

The need to always be right. All wrong reasons.

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Unknown  |  February 7, 2007 at 11:17 pm

    I’m glad to see people are forgiving and to see you are doing good. I’m enjoying reading your writings, reminds me of the past and listening to your words. Some type of comfort in them where I know everything is going to be okay. Keep up the words Greg.

  • 2. Sara Hansen  |  February 7, 2007 at 9:17 pm

    when I was reading this I acknowledged several times to myself ‘wow he is a really good writer.’ im using the word writer saying that you have a lot of good things to say, and how you put your words together. and I am now realizing why people always said that you had an amazing speaking gift. I guess I forget that you are a pastor for a reason, and yes, to me you are still a pastor. I enjoy reading your blog.

  • 3. renversgirl  |  February 6, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    such good strong points. i wonder though how do we reconcile this, how do we live this, do we try and figure that is good enough? Do we leave our lives and start anew? how and where do we know how to start? is it enough to just consider it? God wants us to be more like Him and He wants our sacrifice, but how do we know for sure if it is okay? Again i thank you for making us think, and knowing that the battle is not only mine

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