*It is with incredible pleasure that I present, for the first time in Resisting the Winds’ history, a guest post. The following post is the work of none other than my younger sister, Lyndey Brooks.
Do no for a moment mistake this as a case of nepotism. Lyndey is secondary English teacher who holds a bachelors degree in English Education. That, coupled with her incredibly theological wisdom, makes her more qualified than myself to display her work for all the public to see. Lyndey is not only a fantastic writer and thinker, but has been and continues to be emblematic of theological, spiritual, and emotional maturity.
I have been encouraging her to write for some time. Although I believe her skills and thoughts deserve a platform of their own, a guest contribution is certainly a good place to begin, and I for one, am honored to present it.
This post is sure to encourage all young-adult Christians, and as well be enlightening to the older generations of believers as well.
In Psalm 57, David sings out to God a plea for mercy. Despite being unjustly forced into a cave, he responds
not with anger or resentment. He does not lash out at God for his circumstance, nor does he claim that he deserves better.
Tonight I feel an overwhelming sense of conviction.
My “cave” has taken the form of loneliness for quite some time. My response has taken the form of blame.
If other Millennial Christians would just get their act together, I wouldn’t be so isolated. If other Christians would stop living like the world, my life would be easier and better. I’ll spend a Friday night at home while other Christians compromise their convictions for the sake of a cute Instagram post.
At many lonely times in my life, being a Millennial Believer apart from the world had felt like a curse. I felt punished for living a Christ-centered life. I saw peers who claimed to be Christians drag His name through the mud during their bar hopping weekends Downtown.
I saw Steven Furtick buy a new mansion
preaching pastors took on part-time
jobs to merely survive.
I felt other’s actions burden me with loneliness and despair. As I work through Psalm 57, I am so humbled and freed from this error and fault.
Inconsistent Christians did not choose my loneliness. Steven Furtick did not choose for me to not stay home alone every weekend; God did.
God’s sovereignty has brought me to this cave in my life. I have been brought low enough to admit it was easier for me to blame the mistakes and failings of others for my loneliness than to face the reality of my dissatisfaction of the Lord’s will for my life.
I could easily talk others out of their cave:
“One year will not even be a blot in perspective of eternity.”
“When you’re 80, you will likely not even remember this season of your life.”
“Keep your mind not on things of the world, but on things above…”
In true sinful nature, pride and anxiety allowed for me to lose confidence in my own advice, in Paul’s advice. While most Christians recognize that Paul tells us to not be anxious about anything, we forget that this extends far beyond stressing out about tomorrow’s spelling test. Worrying, a lack of faith, shows true lack of trust in God’s sovereignty. My own lack of trust took the bitter shape of finger pointing. Despite difficulty that has been wonderfully designed by His purpose, I struggled to find constant delight in Him. I struggled to find stable humility in the idea that a lifetime of solitude would still be far better than what I deserve.
Philippians 4:6 is such a popular verse for most Christians. However, so many fail to also memorize the beautiful verse that immediately follows. Paul explains that the peace of God surpasses all understanding, and guards our hearts and minds in Christ. In application, I am not owed anything, certainly not when my confidence in His sovereignty wavers. My flesh has so many desires that constantly fight my desire to please Him. This fleshly pull shows I am less like David and more like the world than I’d like to admit.
When the Lord mercifully brings me from my cave, I will surely find another. I pray, aim, to be more like David. When I am sheltered in cold and darkness, will I too sing for mercy?
Jeremiah 32: 38 – 41,
“And they shall be my people, and I will be their God. I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. I will rejoice in doing them good, and I will plant them in this land in faithfulness, with all my heart and all my soul.”
In my finger pointing, I was convinced the Church was dead and that my generation was lost. I recently heard a sermon by Paul Washer that “gently” reminded me that the Bride of Christ is not Joel Osteen and his church.
I have been reminded of the distinction between “big C” and
“little c”. If the Church is lost, if the Church is not one, then a prayer of the Son is unanswered. The Church will continue to be one whether Lakewood Church grows or not. The everlasting covenant described in Jeremiah 32:38-41 is a passage that should comfort Believers as we are in our caves. God has not turned His back on His Bride. Rather than grumble at nominal Christianity and how it affects my life, I should rejoice in God’s promised faithfulness.
True conviction motivates me to not let the shortcomings of other Christians dictate my own walk with the Lord. As David said, our souls find refuge in the shadow of His wings, and it is only by His mercy that we are brought out of destructive storms. As Believers, we have to work hard every single day to decimate our own selfish plans for our lives.
Charles Spurgeon eloquently said that the sovereignty of God is the pillow upon which the child of God rests his head at night, giving perfect peace. This sentiment perfectly sums up the ideal and overwhelming comfort in our salvation. Even if my pillow never leaves the cave of solitude, I will sing with perfect peace.
What felt like a curse was my refusal to acknowledge my own shortcomings. While I certainly deserve the former, His mercies are new every morning. Even if I continue to live the way God designed, all the while having no fruitful social life, I strive to put the finger away so that I can sing out to the Lord.