As I write this, I’m in a state of half consciousness. My bleary eyes keep blinking trying to stave off sleep. I know I should though. My precious, sleeping babe is likely to awaken any minute and I don’t know how long I will have before she naps again. Also, we have a birthday party today and I’m not sure I’ll get my usual afternoon nap I have come to enjoy, let alone need.
Anyways, lately I’ve been blaming sleep deprivation for my lack of pursing righteousness. Last night at young adult group we conversed about righteousness vs. meaninglessness. At church we are going through the book of Ecclesiastes. As such, on Friday nights, the young adults discuss the sermon and what we are learning from the Scriptures. I know that sleep deprivation is an excuse. I gloss over my daily readings without meditating on what God could potentially be teaching me, or chastening me with.
However, a greater part of me wonders if I’m not pursuing righteousness because I’m not sure what that looks like right now. I spend most of my time at home nursing. I can’t move while doing so. Each feeding can take anywhere from 10 min. – 60 min. There are roughly 8-12 feedings throughout the day. How do I live out righteousness just sitting on my couch? I’ve whispered prayers and read Scripture verses over my daughter Willow. Yet, how frequently am I to do that in order for it to “qualify” as being godly. If I watch hours of sitcom TV shows is it ungodly? I could say sure it is; it doesn’t promote meditations on spiritual things.
I am then plagued with the question of how much prayer time and Bible reading I should be doing each day. This feels legalistic. God wants me to simply be. To pray continuously throughout the day, but I don’t have to feel guilty when it is interspersed with other activities, right? I can blame church for making me feel this way, but then I’d be sinning because I’d be blaming an institution for my sinful legalism.
I’m rambling though.
Last night I asked the question as to what pursuing righteousness looks like. Is it obedience to the Law? Jesus fulfilled it, he didn’t abolish it. Why do we in the church emphasize the need to adhere to certain rules and not others? Sure, we can sum up the Law as Jesus did in loving your God above all else and love thy neighbor as thyself. What does that love look like though? What does the application of loving God and neighbor look like in life? Is it something I’m supposed to feel? If so, it would feel more like mysticism than Christianity. Is it something I adhere to? That again feels like getting knotted up in logistics and doctrine rather than seeking relationship with God.
My flesh is deceitful. The mind can get so caught up in the endless questions that it fails to pursue the man who is the answer to those questions, Jesus. (A question like, “What does James mean by the perfect law in Ch.1 verse 25 of his book?”) Thankfully, we have a God who lets us wrestle with him and his word, even if some church goers would label us “doubters”, us “seekers”, as heretics.
We are Jacobs becoming Israels and that molds us more each day into the image of Christ.