Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Earn Your Downhill - IT'S ALL ABOUT ATTITUDE

No one can serve two masters.
- Matthew 6:24

For me, trail riding initially involved a motor. I had a dirt bike before I had a mountain bike. The uphill and the downhill offered the same thrill. Today I’m still certain the uphill and the downhill offer the same thrill only now I’m peddling without a motor.

I started mountain biking for social reasons. Few people owned or could operate a dirt bike on the mountain bike trails. I admit it never occurred to me to peddle uphill on purpose. I asked, “Why?” I rode the chairlift.

One might surmise I lacked heroism. A hero embodies courage – a willingness to GO even if the success remains uncertain and the potential for danger and pain exist. I can recall thinking I was a hero for dirt biking. The sport often involved pain. But, that pain came as a result of errors of skill instead of suffering to bring about goodness.

When a rider chooses to collaborate with the pitch and undulations of the trail, He becomes like a servant to his master. There exists a willingness to unite with the ever changing terrain and respond with hopeful cooperation.

When I’m riding the trail of life, I have to remember to ask myself often, “Who do I serve?”

To be a disciple of Jesus my attitude must be like the master (Philippians 2:5). I’m not a slave per se but that of friend that sticks close by (John , Proverbs , Amos 3:7). I submit to the Lordship of our King through obedience and trust because I want to – because He is good.

Courage is not haphazard. I act in spite of my fear because the odds are in favor of God. I must submit to His plan and forgo mine.

How much do you trust the character of God?
How much do you trust the provision of God?

I rarely get to know why specific details in my life unfold or delay as they do. But, as I peddle in obedience and trust in His sovereignty I rest in His goodness. God is in the business of redeeming and restoring and wants to use me and you to accomplish His work. That is to say, if my ambitions, motivations, and purposes align to His, when I ask (Matthew 7:7), He always shows up.

The bike symbolizes for me the everyday occurrences of knowing God – it’s a great word picture image. Knowing God doesn’t have to be a mystery.

If I am a slave to the world (1 John ) my attitude is shaped by:

  • money
  • autonomy
  • conquest
  • justice
  • law
  • sexuality
  • survival

If I am a friend of God (James ) my attitude is shaped by:

  • freedom
  • trust
  • mercy
  • truth
  • goodness
  • humility
  • service
  • grace
  • hope
  • love

It seems so much of my current adult life I spend separating myself from the corrupt influences of the world that once dictated my steps. I try to step back and enter the wilderness trail where I smell, taste, see, feel, and touch the goodness of God through His creation and reenter the world with His power and influence.

It’s in the wilderness that drawing upon courage to GO seems pure, innocent like a child (Psalm 116:6). I set aside the outcome and nestle in to God’s plan and His purposes because I know His ways are higher than mine (Isaiah 55:9) regardless of the cost. I trust the Spirit of God to lead, intercede, guide, teach, direct, convict, my self directed consciousness. I become tender, even malleable when under heat and pressure of the “climb”. He is the master.  

Choose life (Deuteronomy 30:19). God gives life hope. God gives life purpose. Let Him set you free.