Friday, July 27, 2012

Missing Person

I’ve been listening to the words of Michael W. Smith’s song, Missing Person. These words have dissected my heart and laid it bare before me. I looked at it and I couldn’t find the missing person. There is a boy I am looking for, and either he grew old or grew wings and flew away.

There was a boy who had the faith to move a mountain
And like a child he would believe without a reason
Without a trace, he disappeared into the void and
I’ve been searchin’ for that missing person
He used to want to try to walk the straight and narrow
He had a fire he could feel it in the marrow
It’s been a long time and I haven’t seen him lately but
I’ve been searching for that missing person

There are times, like now, that I miss God. It’s not because I have sinned. I sin all the time, and I have felt him closest to me when I was committing some of the worst sins imaginable to man. It has taught me that sin never makes God withdraw his Spirit from me. He himself said he would never leave me nor forsake me. (Hebrews 13:5). I simply don’t know what’s going on.

But I still miss the boy that I was. I miss the blind faith and the exhilarating assurance of supernatural miracles. I am in a desert and I don’t even know how I got there. The thirst and hunger eat at me. I am totally exposed.

I am searching for that missing person.

I feel all alone, but I know I am not. So I write this to ask, is there anyone out there like me? Anyone tired of the emptiness that is so alien it causes you to dread yourself? Please call me, text me or send me an email. I know I was never meant to travel this journey alone. I don’t really need encouragement, because I know all the right words. I need someone who’s been there, or who is there. Someone who knows what it feels like to know something in your heart that doesn’t make sense to your head.

So I don’t know whether I’ll find that missing person who used to be me. I don’t care if I never find him, as long as I find someone better. But right now, I am looking back at the past, and wondering how I could leave it without erecting a monument. I sometimes love deceiving myself that the past is better than the future. 

Listen to the whole song, Missing Person here:

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cartoons For My Book!

My friend, Eric Keba has drawn some interesting cartoons for my upcoming book, What If God Doesn't Really Love You? I want to show off some of them, so you can laugh as hard as I also laughed. I also want you to know that these cartoons alone will be worth the cost of the book when it comes out.

Click on the cartoons to enlarge

Thanks a lot Eric. You are an angel.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Chocolate Vs Christ

I have had a rough day today. A lot of things have gone quite well. For example, I talked with two of my long-lost friends that I’d almost forgotten about. But some bad things have also happened. I won’t give examples lest you laugh at me. It is not the bad things that have made my day rough, but rather the combination of the two. My heart feels like it has been dumped into a running food processor, with the good stuff getting mixed with the bad stuff and messing me up.

So today, on my way from work, I visited a bakery and bought myself a chocolate cream cake in the name of counting it all joy when I fall into various trials (see James 1:2). You see, at church we say, “When you are faced with trials, throw a party.” And this was my way of throwing a party, or so I thought.

So I am seated at the dining table, taking an occasional bite on my chocolate cream cake, and asking myself some serious questions. For starters, if this is a party, it is a pity party. And I feel like an alcoholic turning to his bottle to drown out his problems. I am almost sure that the pleasure I am getting from the chocolate cream cake will not last long.

While it is good not to take life too seriously and to laugh at some of our problems, where do we draw the line between being carefree, and turning to something pleasurable to fulfil our deepest needs? I have come to realise that in this life, nothing really satisfies. Most times when we decide to get born again and clean up our lives, all we do is exchange bad behaviours with good ones, thinking that it will bring satisfaction in our lives. We need to realise that anyone can become good out of their own will-power. I know many non-Christian friends of mine who behave better than me.

I know it is pretty obvious that bad habits like smoking and drinking never satisfy. But I want to tell you that even the good ones also never satisfy. Even as I eat this cake, I know it won’t satisfy my deepest desire.

Only Christ satisfies.

Many times God has to knock us off our high horses so we can realise that him, and him only can satisfy. I sometimes turn to chocolate to drown out my pain. Another person turns to television, another to work, another to gardening, and most Christians turn to charity work and ministry. But all of these leave us empty and feeling dejected.

Only Christ satisfies.

I’ve only eaten half of the chocolate cake. It has lost its appeal because I know that compared to Christ, this chocolate is no match. It cannot bring lasting satisfaction.

What about you? When you are drowning in trials or problems, when you are wallowing in guilt or doubt, what do you turn to?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Valley of The Shadow of Death

I’ve been to hell and come back. I don’t know your definition of hell, but my hell was loneliness, agony, depression, guilt and condemnation. The world has come crashing down on me before. But I am still alive.

I don’t know whether I am any stronger, or wiser. But who cares? I am still alive. And I am not alone. I have someone by my side at all times. He loves me, accepts me, and delights in me.

Over five years ago, I wrote a song. I was in the pits, the kind that David described as the valley of the shadow of death. At that point, I got to know that even in the valley of the shadow of death, He never left me. He still loved me.

He was always there, even when I didn’t feel him. That was why, in the middle of my pain and confusion, I wrote these words:

Before the world began
Before shape was formed
When sun, moon and stars
Never lit the sky
You were there

Across the firmament
Skies and heavens formed
With the spoken word
Unquestionably superior
You were there

Our forefathers saw you not
Prophets only dreamt
Archaeologists searched
But none could see that
You were there

Before your plan was fulfilled
Before I was thought of
In my mother’s womb you knit
And before she knew it
You were there

Out into the world I came
No silver spoon in mouth
And I could not see you
But in a glimmer of hope
You were there

My tears could forever flow
Agony, loneliness, ruin
That was I
Forever out of sight you seemed
But you were there

When I cried and wept
When I suffered loneliness
When nostalgia crept in
When hopelessness reigned
You were there

At first I never knew
But then your word said so
You are there in our hardest times
That is when I saw that
You were there.

That is when I saw that
You were there.

Are you in your own version of the valley of the shadow of death? He is there.