I hope she doesn’t mind me doing this but I needed to respond to one of her podcasts.
Erwin and Kim McManus run Mosaic Church in LA. It is a Christ centered, Spirit filled church whose podcast has lifted me up more than once.
To those who have been following my blog, I am a lapsed agnostic turned born again evangelical Christian who still is saddened by the hypocrisy of the American Church and this past year was a real tough year, this summer it just got worse and worse. Thinking why am I doing this? I am nobody and it is just a waste of time. Then I listened to Does God Speak, the Mother’s Day Sermon given by Kim McManus. It was like she was speaking directly to me and I had to write a blog about it.
My depression and anxiety makes it had to read scripture, pray, and even listen to Christian sermons. That is why I am writing on a mother’s day Sermon on September 24th.
I love her style. It is humorous. It flows naturally, and is full of the Holy Spirit.
At the 6:06 marks she starts to talk about how she was getting the feeling from God that in this sermon she is speaking to someone, maybe in the audience, maybe listening on the podcast. That she is speaking someone to tell them what God’s told her. In all modesty, I believe that I am that someone. Be it a couple months late.
At the 7:12 mark she quotes Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
It is very hard for me to do that. With my shame and anxiety, and depression. Confidence is the last thing I feel and grace and mercy the last thing that I deserve. I eat self doubt for breakfast and I shampoo with self loathing. (Listen to her podcast and this might make more sense)
She then talked about King David in Psalm 17. The Psalms and the Prophets help me so much because i am reminded that I often feel like King David felt and that I feel how Isaiah and Jeremiah felt, and that I feel how Kim McManus feels, I am not that alone no matter how bad I feel. I do like King David call upon God For I know that He will hear my prayers. But I still sometimes don’t think he answers me. And it is because of my anxiety. This anxiety I have suffered from since I was a kid, this helps blind me from seeing God’s wonder and love.
I know that God sees through all my anxiety and fear and yes I do believe that it is phenomenal. Although I never had the experiences that Kim has had. I do write my blogs and make my videos. I have preached at the Capital. I have felt God working through me so much it scares me. But yet at other times, I feel so alone like I have let him down and sometimes in my darkest moments I feel like He is stringing me along and the I feel guilty for those thoughts.
I am not 58, I am 40. Although those 40 years were not the most productive ones. Most of those years I have been bogged down in anxiety and depression but God found me and lead me to Him 9 years ago this month. I made a couple movies, I went back to school and got a bachelors of science in Psychology and am a productive member of my church.
But I am still single and never had a serious girlfriend. I don’t have a career. I feel adrift. And that scares me. The feeling that I am not putting enough faith in God.
I have struggled with wickedness, a wickedness that is so common among both men and women’s that lead me into darkness. I have ignored what he speaks, not all the time but a lot of the time. It is not actively saying “NO”. It is more passive “Not Right Now.”or “leave me alone.” It hurts to do what I think God wants me to do so it is easier either t watch TV, surf the internet or look at porn.
I am paying attention and my life isn’t not always like this, there are moments when I feel like i am doing what’s God had planned for me and those moments are glorious and I feel utterly happy. But those moments have become few and far between
25:26 I don’t want to turn a deaf ear to God. I listen and I believe but I don’t understand. And my sin does slow down my reflexes so I am not as strong a fighter against the darkness of our age and I get overwhelmed by them.
Practicing over and over and over takes energy I don’t seem to have but I let God know that’s He is welcome on my life. Stillness is the most difficult discipline for me to learn.
Kim and I are a lot alike and her sermon helped me because I feel the same way. Again the energy it take s to be obedient is hard. It is also hard to tell what is coming from God and what is coming from my OCD.
The discipline of rest is so hard for someone whose fight or flight response is always on.
Several people came into her life to urge her to write a book that she was having problems writing because of fear and anxiety. Kim said at the 36 minute mark again that God was telling her that this is for someone on the margin. Someone who is feeling like he or she might give up.someone who might leave. I am that person. I have been thinking about giving up th fight against the hypocrisy, the fight to show the world that Christianity is not what they thing it is. (You can learn more in more of my blogs)
9 years ago God came into my life and gave me a mission and the mission has been hard. I wrote letters to newspapers, I try to reach out to Franklin Graham urging him to speak up against the greed, the hate, the hypocrisy, the bigotry of our current political system to no avail. I was about to give up the fight. And then heard this podcast.
Kim, I am glad that you girded up your loins and made this sermon. God wants to bring me back on the path. He wants to use me. He doesn’t want me to give up. He doesn’t want me to leave the game. HE WANTS ME TO WRITE. His words will guide me. His words will help me get the discipline that I need.
But I am still afraid that I will let God down. But I would rather try and fight the good fight with God because when God is guiding my heart, it doesn’t matter what exactly I do, I can not let God down because it is God that is working through me not me.
May He make my light brighter and brighter. May the Lord use my writings to help bring people like I was. Cynics who thought that Christianity is a hypocritical faith is love and strength.
God you are a loving, protecting, and hopeful God who will remove darkness and blinders. God help me heal and be the Max you want me to be.
if you read this, thank you for listening to God and helping me. It will be a long road but I won’t be on it alone. God Bless both you and Erwin.