Monday, September 15, 2014

Exchanging Selfies for The Kingdom



I knew she was hurting.  I knew she carried the weight of the world, a little extra weight on her hips, and the weight of a growing child.  I knew she was lonely.  But most of all, I knew she was desperate to feel loved.

Her selfie screamed it.  Those eyes, that tongue, and that cleavage broke my heart.  I just wish she knew that she didn't have to put herself out there like that.  Love was already waiting for her.

I closed Facebook and breathed deeply.  I bet the Samaritan woman at the well would have taken a lot of selfies.

In this piece of scripture found in the gospel of John chapter four, Jesus takes a rest from an intense journey near a well in Samaria.  When a disgraced and shameful Samaritan woman approaches the well, she has no idea who she is about to encounter.  I can picture her face as she walks in the heat of the day.  Hot, dusty, and creased with the cares of the world.

You see, she's been married five times and the man she is with now is not her own.  As women, we can surely understand her plight.  We often look for love in all the wrong places too, don't we?  The bible doesn't tell us much more about her past, but I can only imagine what kind of heartache she has brought upon herself over the years.

Today, she would be that girl chasing the married man.  She would be the desperate (cheating) housewife.  She would probably fill social media with cries for attention.  Insecure.

Aren't we all?

Women are like a petrie dish for the cultivation of insecurity.  The sex, the selfies, the string bikinis...it's all a longing for love, isn't it?  An intense desire for someone to notice us, to pursue us, to want to know us intimately.  And if that's the case, then these cries for love are all a longing for God...because God is love.  

The craving for connection is a God-given gift.  It's a part of the beauty of a woman.  The need to be known.  Really known.

Tragedy strikes when our need to be known gets misplaced on men rather than our heavenly father.

You see, He lovingly and gently placed that craving in us.  He put it there.  But not for other faulty human beings to fill.  He instilled an emptiness inside us that can only be filled by Him.

He wants us to crave Him.  As badly as we want to really be known, He wants us to really know Him.  He wants us to seek Him, pursue Him, fall madly in love with Him.  We should never be able to get enough of Him.  Always craving more.

And He's big enough to continue to fill us, time and time again, like a never-ending gush of love and security and confidence in who we are as children of God.

Men have a wonderful place in our lives all to themselves, especially inside a marriage.  But when we take God's pleasure of being our all and all and grant it to another man, we are grieving His heart and ultimately setting ourselves up for disappointment.

Actually, it's not fair to them that we expect them to do that which only God can do for us.

Jesus tells the woman at the well about living water.  A refreshing love that is so satisfying that she will never be in want for it again.  A quench for her thirst.

Could it be true for us today?  Is there a love so big that it quenches the thirsty selfie? Could we find an ever-satisfying love in Jesus Christ that quiets our desperation once and for all?

I think the answer is an echoing yes.

So how do we step out of the shadow of a selfie culture and into the warmth of God's appreciation and pursuit of us? It starts with prayer.

A heart change is a change that can only be made by the Holy Spirit working in us.  It takes a commitment to prayer, asking God to mold your heart after Him.  Tell God about your sincerest desire to throw yourself at Him.  Confess your need for His deepest love and security to be felt in your life.

It moves on with scripture.  His word is filled to the brim with truths that will spur you on to live a life in which you are completely and totally satisfied in His attention, His love, and His safety.

"Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God?  Or am I trying to please people?  If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ." Galatians 1:10

Copy God's words down and post them on your bathroom mirror, hang them from your rear-view mirror, tape them to the back of your phone.  Read and re-read them, all the while asking God to let their healing power saturate who you are.

Finally, we can make a conscious effort to shift our focus off of ourselves and onto His Kingdom.  What a lovely difference it would be to see fewer pouty-faced selfies each week on Facebook and Instagram and more photos of us with our family and friends doing solid work for the Kingdom...loving on our kids, coffee with a mother who desperately needs a break, or a shout-out to our husbands for how hard they work.

Exchanging selfies for the Kingdom...let's do this!

1 comment:

  1. Ugh, this is good. Ripping a band - aid off painfully good.

    ReplyDelete