Skip to main content

And the "plot" thickens!

Have you ever just plotted to do something you knew was wrong?  You know what I mean - rehearsing what you will say, how you will respond, or what you will do when someone does or says something you don't like.  Those are the moments in life I'd like to say I am less "proud" of than some of the others, but if we were to be honest I think we might all have done (or still do this) on occasion.  We feel like some "right" is violated by another - either by their action, inaction, or what they say or how they say it.  Relationships are tough business and it is hard to remain committed to the idea of being entirely genuine within them - because it means you and I will be putting ourselves out there in a rather vulnerable manner.  To do this is kind of scary.  Maybe this is why so many relationships in our world today are nothing more than superficial and why we have a definition for "acquaintance" in our dictionary!  We don't feel comfortable being real, much less do we feel comfortable staying real when we do or say something embarrassing!

It’s a mistake to make evil plans, but you will have loyal friends if you want to do right. (Proverbs 14:22 CEV)

If we consider our passage in light of the other relationship advice Solomon provides in the Book of Proverbs (also referred to as the Book of Wisdom), we kind of see this pattern of being "relationally real".  In times past, people had no social media to keep them "in touch" with the happenings in the lives of those they knew, much less connected to people half-way around the world who they have never met, but who share fun quips or play online games with them.  In fact, they had daily encounters with live human beings - making it a whole lot harder to escape their "up front and personal" scrutiny of the other person's life! Being there "in the flesh" has a much more "personal" focus and can often make it harder for one to "cover up" or "mask" their true emotions.  When we have been active in "plotting" or "making evil plans", it shows!

Likewise, when we are truly working to become comfortable with being "our real selves" (both when we are up-front-and-personal and "behind the scenes" in our lives), we find ourselves entering into relationship "territory" which we seldom get into otherwise.  Maybe this is the importance of being genuine - we get into areas we wouldn't have had access to before in another's life.  In turn, they have access into areas of our lives which we'd not have given them admittance to without this type of transparency.  To truly have this kind of friendship with another is a rarity these days - because we allow ourselves to be one way behind the scenes, but portray another image of ourselves to the "public view" through the filters of social media and the like.

To do right in relationship, one must be committed to this idea of genuineness. There can be no growth if we are superficial and unwilling to be genuine about what it is we struggle with, what keeps us from moving on in life, and the like. We need each other's encouragement to overcome some of these things as much as they need ours.  It is much easier to plot how we will act or respond when someone does something we don't like or which will hurt us.  It is quite another to "plot" to do good in the face of evil, to respond lovingly when another just isn't very loving, and to refrain from pulling into one's shell when the threat of being exposed gets a little too uncomfortable!  If we are to grow in Christ, and in relationship with each other, we need this kind of "good plotting" to occur!  

I don't have many people who are genuine with me in life.  Some relationships I have remain superficial no matter how much I have worked on them.  The other person is just not willing to let their guard down.  It isn't because they cannot trust me, but they won't trust me.  There is something holding them back from being genuine with me.  It might take me a long time to model genuineness in my own life in the face of the other guy putting up all kinds of facades, but if I continue long enough, they will either learn there is no "evil intent" in my actions, or they will walk away.  I pray it isn't the latter, but it is a matter of choice for us to remain genuine in the face of the facade around us.  In time, we don't know what someone will see in us which brightens their day, gives hope where despair has been lingering, or just encourage them to take one more step forward.  Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

Getting at the heart of it all

Have you ever seen someone so good with their skinning knife they can just peel away the hide of an animal without a rip or tear, no waste of any of the meat just below that skin? I have seen some fishermen able to fillet their catch with such skill not even one bone is found in the fillet. How do they learn this skill? I think it comes to them through practice and with the employment of the right 'tool' to do the job at hand. There is comfort in knowing that God means what he says and his Word will come to pass. His Word is like the scalpel in the skilled hands of a surgeon or the knife in the hands of the skilled hunter. As a nurse, I have seen the skillful use of the scalpel - dissecting away the finest of tissue to protect the healthy tissue and to expose the tissue that has become devitalized by disease or decay. I have also seen the damage done by a "blade" in the hands of one not trained or at all skilled in its use. The difference is beyond description.

God m…

Be a little salt

Ever wonder why Jesus left his disciples with the idea of being 'salt on this earth'? We don't fully appreciate salt these days because we aren't as accustomed to how it was used during the times Jesus spoke those words. We often have to put ourselves into the culture where the words are being recorded in order to fully comprehend the significance of their meaning. In the days of the disciples, salt was a basic "staple" of life. It was that which acted as "preservation" for everything. It also was the main seasoning of the dishes prepared - although there were other spices, salt was a 'staple'. Perhaps we would do well to look at some of the other functions of salt in order to see what Jesus may have meant when he referred to our lives a salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of the earth.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltin…

Hey, friend me!

When we really determine to walk the pathway of a disciple, it will cost us. The pathway is not always traveled by as many of those we call "friends" as we'd like to think. Yet, when we find someone to travel with us in this journey of faith, what a blessing it is! We need each other to understand and fulfill God's calling on our lives. We each compliment the other, challenging and uplifting, learning together what is contained deep in the Word of God.

Keep me safe, O God, I've run for dear life to you. I say to God, "Be my Lord!" Without you, nothing makes sense. And these God-chosen lives all around—what splendid friends they make! (Psalm 16:1-3)

David's words ring true in the hearts of many who engage in this walk of discipleship with Christ - without you, God, absolutely nothing makes sense at all. We can attempt to make sense out of tragedy, loss, or even a success all on our own. Without God, and those he places in our lives as fellow travelers…