A glance into a mirror that I didn’t expect…

by DanWolgemuth on May 2, 2014

Mack was unwrapping the mess that was his childhood. An absent mother, a robust and destructive gang community, drugs, violence and ultimately incarceration. Without being mean-spirited, Mack challenged the notion that the juvenile justice system as it stands could ever rehabilitate a young law breaker. He understood and embraced both the need for justice and the personal responsibility for his actions, but our current public system empowers hatred. Often being locked up unlocks a pathway to lifelong destruction. His words were fuel on the fire of my soul.

But it was a simple statement of fact that projected a light into the darkest cockroach-infested corners of every community in our nation.

As Mack talked about his father, he unemotionally and non-judgmentally reflected, “My dad was there, but he was working on his own stuff.”

As the words settled on my soul, I realized the amazing unforced indictment. An indictment that was impossible to deflect. An indictment that isn’t narrowly systemic to urban communities, or to impoverished environments. In fact, Mack’s statement rings true in the most elegant homes and in the most affluent neighborhoods.

Way too many of us are working on our “own stuff” instead of sacrificing for Kingdom stuff.

Ironically, Mack wasn’t chastising his father – he was almost excusing his behavior because, after all, we all need the space to work on our own stuff.

These words are like sand in the nicely polished conscience of my soul.

Working on my own stuff is my “get out of jail free card” for selfishness and neglect. The needs of others, even the most vulnerable can, and perhaps should, take a back seat while I get my life in order…

Really? Is this right?

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Philippians 2:3

Mack nailed it. Whether he intended to or not. Until our stuff submits to God’s stuff our communities will suffer and our detention centers will be full.

Until our stuff moves to the bottom of the list, our families will deteriorate, even as our bodies get more conditioned and our minds expand.

When our stuff squeezes out His stuff everything suffers, except perhaps my over inflated ego.

The picture that Mack held up of his own family became a mirror to my heart, and frankly, I didn’t like the image it reflected.

God’s stuff. Always and only His stuff first.

The call to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness…

Not hectic. Not overworked. Not afraid to rest, but always and only His stuff first.

God help me. God help us.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: