Sunday, May 16, 2010

I can't believe I'm doing this!

I think I may have addressed this thought briefly in another post, but I just gotta say it again. I cannot believe I am actually doing this...I cannot believe I am a blogger! Whatsupwiththat?! I am not totally sure why I started it...well, I am...I started it because I could no longer contain the stuff swimming in my brain day in and day out, and I feared I would explode if I did not start writing it down. But now, when I say the word "blogger" out loud, I feel as if I must fit into a dime-a-dozen category. While to me, the concept is fresh and brand new and exciting, I suspect that to many others, this concept is already old and worn out. At any given time of any given day, there are people blogging about weather, people blogging about news, people blogging about diaper changes, people blogging about blogging...and on and on and on. What makes any blog any different than the rest? What makes any particular blog stand out as a shiny penny amidst a pile of dimes??

No idea.

I am realizing, however, that I do want my blog to stand out. I mean, why stay up extra late a few nights a week espousing on all my thoughts, if it were all to amount to nothing? I do, in fact, want a reader or two. Or ten! Yeah, twenty, I'll take twenty. Make that 50. No, 100. OK, I'll take....I'll take whomever God leads this way long enough to catch their attention.

And therein lies the crazy part. And the key. I want whatever and whomever God wants and chooses to use in and through this blog. Sound vague?? No, not really. It is God's blank check. And it has me a little freaked out. "OK, Lord, do whatever you want." Did I really just say that?? Am I giving Him free choice to do whatever He feels like with me?? Am I nuts?? Oh, wait, yes, I am a nut. (Says so in my title.) And a dork. (I have known that for years. I embrace it without fear.) So I might as well put myself out there for the world wide web, and leave the rest to God, right? Right.

I realize, however, that every time a dear friend tells her friends about the blog and to add me as Facebook friend...or when a senior lady friend actually quotes me in a mass e-mail to everyone she cares about...or when a respected elder at church asks me when I have time to blog, thereby giving proof to the fact that he actually reads it...or when a gentleman 15 years my senior quotes me back to myself, commenting that I am "so right".........I realize that no only am I loving this more than I had dared to hope, but that suddenly the pressure is on.


Lord, just use me. I want to be used by You. I honestly cannot tell you how many times I have prayed that prayer. Too many to count. So many times that I wonder if I even notice any more when He uses me in some "small" way, as if the only way He should use me is in some big way...
Lord, just use me. I want to be used by You. "Shelly, smile at that frazzled new Mom over there." {I smile. Too easy.}
Lord, just use me. I want to be used by You. "Shelly, hold your son and sway him in your embrace until he looks up and says, I love you Mommy." {I rock my child and enjoy his embrace. I get just as much out of it as he does.}
Lord, just use me. I want to be used by You. "Shelly, ignore the messy house and bake banana bread with all those old frozen bananas you have so that you can give it away." {I bake bread, give it away, and grumble about the toys all over the floor. Whine, complain. That is so like me.}

I have done all those things. Recently. In fact, they come naturally to me. They are so natural to me--as I am sure they are to all of you--that I frequently fail to notice that in and through simple acts of kindness, I am being used by God. And perhaps you feel the same way. You see, when you get used to being a nice person, a good Christian, and a kind soul, simple acts of kindness just trickle out of you like a leaky faucet, without a lot of effort or planning. Sure, God is guiding and directing, but it is so simple to be nice that the simplicity somehow removes the perception of Heavenly power. There is no "ah-ha" moment. No cheering crowd, no life changed, no awards bestowed, or even an afternoon nap as a reward. It's as if God is not really using you much at all, and you yearn for the big gushes of inspiration and usefulness. Or at least I do.

That last section sounded braggy, but I was not trying to. Not at all. It, in fact, is my own personal reminder to allow God to freely use me in the smallest of ways, knowing that there is not such thing as a "small" way in the Kingdom of God. And, I suspect that if you are actually taking the time in your day to read this blog, you, too, are a nice person who takes for granted that you are nice. Hats off to you! Here is your reminder that NO MATTER HOW SMALL, ANYTHING DONE IN LOVE FOR ANOTHER, IS YOU BEING USED BY GOD.

All that said, I do pray frequently that God will use this blog in whatever way He sees fit. To those of you forwarding it on, I am grateful. To those of you receiving encouragement, I am both humbled and honored. Give God the glory.

I had thought when I began tonight that I might tell you a bit about myself and the craziness that is my life, but God led me in a different direction. It's His blog, written by His Nut, so why shouldn't it swerve all over the place?? Instead, I will close with the lyrics of an Amy Grant song that years ago shaped part of who I am today.

When the weight of all my dreams
is resting heavy on my head,
and the thoughtful words of help and hope
have all been nicely said,
but I'm still hurting,
wondering if I'll ever be the one I think I am.
I think I am.
Then You gently re-remind me
that you've made me from the first,
and the more I try to be the best,
the more I get the worst.
And I realize the good in me
is only there because of who You are.
Who You are.
And all I ever have to be is what You made me.
Any more or less would be a step out of Your plan.
As You daily re-create me help me always keep in mind,
That I only have to do what I can find.
And all I ever have to be...all I have to be...all I ever have to be...
is what You made in me.

Thanks for this honor. Good night, Lord. I love you so much.

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