One Step Forward and About 10 Million Back

Nobody gets too far like that.  Or something like that.  I think the song actually states “one step forward and two steps back”, but I feel like I take more than two back sometimes.  In my walk with Christ.  Just when I think I’m doing well and moving forward and congratulating myself on how well I’m doing, God humbles me yet again.

Last weekend my husband and I went to a Christian concert, Chris Tomlin and Rend Collective were playing nearby so we made plans last summer to attend and bought great tickets.  Down on the floor and up close to the stage.  But not so close to the stage that I thought we would be caught amongst the standers.  You know who I mean.  The people who are so into the music, they can’t help but stand and dance a little to the music.  Which is great if you can do it, but I can’t stand very long.  Especially not last weekend.  My back was acting up a little and I needed to sit.  So we found ourselves sitting in these great seats, except the woman in front of me wanted to stand.  So my husband offered to trade seats with them, explaining that I can’t stand very long and we couldn’t see behind them.  The woman became upset at the request and would not switch.  Nor would she sit.  So I’m sitting there contemplating on how a supposedly Christian woman, at a Christian concert who is waving her hands in the air like she’s praising God, can be so un-Christian in her actions.  I also was trying not to be resentful or bitter towards her.  We did have the opportunity to move to seats 2 rows ahead of her as no one was sitting there, and were in even better seats   That helped my attitude.  I also spent time in prayer during the concert for her and other people who were there and I was able to walk away with love in my heart for her.  This was big for me.
I was raised not to let anyone best me and to fight for my rights.  Turning the other cheek really doesn’t come easy for me.  But I want it to.  I want a loving response to be second nature for me.
Since then I have been thinking how glad I was that God allowed me to use this as an opportunity to grow in grace and love.  To be able to extend His grace to another person.  I told myself that maybe this wasn’t her best moment.  That like me, maybe she reacted badly in the moment and when she had time to think about it later, regretted her actions.

I have been working on the inside of me and trying to make sure that when I get bumped, what spills out is something that honors Christ.  So yes, the experience at the concert was a step ahead for me.

Fast forward to this morning when I found myself saying not so nice things to other drivers. In my car.  Not to their face.  This is one area where I really struggle.  I am not a patient driver and I have found myself singing along to the Christian radio station one minute praising God, and then in the next instant cursing the driver who cuts me off, with the same mouth.  “Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.” James 3:10.

I’m instantly remorseful and realize, how far I have to go yet.

Dear Father, help me to keep my focus on you.  Help me to turn the other cheek, to offer my coat if they ask for my shirt, to walk a second mile with them,  to heap blessings on their heads and not coals.  Help me to remember that I need just as much if not more grace than anyone else.  Help me to forgive as I want forgiveness.  Keep me humble and reminded that I am a sinner that has been redeemed by You, and by your Son’s death on the cross, and that not of myself or anything I have done or will do.
In your Son’s precious name I do pray.

Amen.

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10 thoughts on “One Step Forward and About 10 Million Back

  1. You may not like what I have to say, and for that I apologize in advance:

    ANOTHER POINT OF VIEW: That woman, maybe she struggles with selfishness or perhaps she has other things she’s battling (that you have no idea. maybe cancer?) and this was her one day to let go and be free … and they really wanted those seats…then someone is telling her to sit or change spots, when she is praising GOD for her cancer being in remission? Oddly, maybe she found you guys rude and was praying for you in return? She probably didn’t know the extent of your back issues? Just some lady that didn’t want to stand and wanted the better seats? What if she is a blogger and sending out a post similar to this one?

    FACT: People are going to stand and dance at concerts. I like to do both- sit and jump up and dance to a song or two that I like…you can’t expect people to remain seated or get angry if they refuse to switch seats with you because YOU can’t stand for a length of time. Some might view that as selfish on your end? It’s a rock/country Christian concert, not a symphony. People are going to dance and throw their hands up in praise. Accept that, or find a different seat, or don’t go.

    TIP: check with the “security” guys and explain your health/back issues, they might allow you to take other open seats or those nice, spacious “reserved” ones for wheelchairs? Those seats are so nice, although at the back of the stadium sometimes…but still can see quite well. I wanted to sit there at the Pacific Amphitheater for Huey Lewis and the News. I saw someone with a cast on their leg sitting there.

    Maybe you can call the venue and purchase those seats in advance or ones in the front row, before it drops down to the next level. That’s what we do… because I’m short. Once people stand, and I stand…I have to peer through their armpits to see. 🙂 Even when sitting, if it’s a tall person- I can’t see. My husband knows this, I can’t expect those tall people to sit (or slouch) or change seats with me…so we buy tickets at the front of the row, cheaper seating, just before it drops down to the next expensive level. No one is in front me and NO I would not be willing to switch with anyone. We purposely purchased those seats for a reason. I typically sit, but will dance to a couple of songs. People are taller than I, if they stand, they can easily see over me. I would certainly try to be accommodating to a request like yours, but we’d have to find a compromise of 2 dance songs. 🙂

    This is not to be antagonistic, but just a different view? And hopefully, help you find a solution to your next concert seating needs? Buy the right seats for you, before you attend?

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    1. Thanks for the input. It is always good to consider other views. Always. I think I’m just going to stop going to concerts. Just getting too old and with my health issues, it is harder to enjoy. I’ll buy a cd instead and just enjoy listening to the music.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I rarely go myself, because we don’t go unless we can get that one particular row where no one is in front me (in the cheaper section) because it’s getting too costly to go to concerts. Period. Even the “cheap seats” are not cheap. We can barely afford that one row, once a year for this annual concert we like to attend. We have found it’s just not fun for me if I have to watch everything through arm pits. 🙂

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  2. I really appreciate your honesty in sharing what God is teaching you. It is so hard to be patient and loving sometimes, especially when other people seem to be acting unreasonably- you are certainly not alone in that struggle. Well done for being able to pray for the lady at the concert- I love how you saw it as an opportunity to grow in grace and love. (And I hope you enjoyed the concert- I really like both Chris Tomlin and Rend Collective.)
    I don’t think the incident in the car counts as 10 million steps backwards either. We all have things that we repeatedly struggle with but I think the fact that you are aware of it and want to change and that you’re praying about it shows that God is working in that situation too.

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