A guest or not?

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Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong; for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away. Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:1-4 (NIV)

Don’t bother your head with braggarts or wish you could succeed like the wicked. In no time they’ll shrivel like grass clippings and wilt like cut flowers in the sun. Get insurance with God and do a good deed, settle down and stick to your last. Keep company with God, get in on the best. Psalm 37:1-4 (MSG emphasis added)

I have often lived a comparison life. I have looked at what others have and declared myself wanting. I have listened to where others have travelled and deemed myself a country bumpkin. I have observed the accomplishments of others and wanted to hide my scarce list. I have found myself wanting, lacking and insufficient because I have compared.

In those moments when feelings of inadequacy rise up, I have wondered why others succeed and have while I feel like I do not. Listening to my life, when I am honest and I tell it like it is, I am embarrassed that I feel that I do not have. All around me are blessings poured out into my lap! I have health – that is of more worth than I truly understand. My home is warm, furnished and dry. I have a fridge, freezer, and cupboards with food in them. I have a vehicle that works exceptionally well. I have a closet, and even while there are clothes in the laundry, there are other clothes waiting to be worn. I am employed. Not only that, but my job is one that I love and I feel called by God to continue in it. I am able to travel and have had the luxury of exploring the world. I am richly blessed by a community of friends and my church home. I am blessed beyond measure. To think that I am not is to believe a lie. I need to stop bothering my head with braggarts.

When company comes over to my house, it’s always a bit of an adventure. Sleeping quarters are found on the floor of my office or the living room. The bathroom is shared between multiple people. Towels overlap as the hanging space is limited. We hang out in the kitchen over hot cups of tea and a big breakfast. Stories are shared. Laughter shakes the walls and hopefully doesn’t wake up the neighbours. We often stay up way too late catching up on the living that has happened since we last hung out. Company is a good thing. It fills my house and feeds my soul. Keep company with God.

I’m not sure if I keep that type of company with God. I feel His presence. I know His touch. We have been on adventures together. But sometimes in the “to do” list parts of my life, I don’t engage with Him like I would like.

Recently, God’s conversation with me was all about the time I spend hanging out with Him. He was clear, it wasn’t enough. I sometimes treat God like the “special” company. You know that kind that won’t open the cupboard doors and make themselves comfortable. The ones who sit stiffly on the edge of the sofa. I don’t think that’s the kind of company God is thinking of. Rather, He’s the one who snoops in the closet, digs to the back of the cupboard, moves in and puts His feet up on the coffee table. He might just forget a coaster under his mug. He is definitely the make yourself at home, help yourself to seconds or even thirds of dinner, kind of company. He is the guest I want to hang out with because my life is richer and more full from the experience.

I am called to challenge my priorities. I want to be careful about which life I choose. I want a life fixed on God. I want to be so close to Him that I confide in Him without even thinking about it. I want to know His heart. I want my feet to move where He desires them to. I don’t want to think of Him as a guest. I want Him to be a part of the woodwork just like He has always wanted to be. I choose to ignore the braggarts and keep company with God.

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