Thursday, May 24, 2007

breaking blogfast - in search of a new context

I'm formally breaking my blogfast this morning. It's been a good thing for me to pause. Very good. In fact, it's a bit hard to begin blogging again. There's the desire to be completely solid before I speak here again. And I'm not. But I do feel less opaque than I did at the beginning.

When I began this fast on 26 March my primary purpose was to learn more experientially what it meant to have strength in Christ. To this end, I have primarily been focusing on the following passages during my hiatus:

One thing that I did that has been very helpful was to create an MP3 of just these passages (and a couple of others) and to create a playlist that I have listened to over and over again on my Nano, mostly while driving.

As I indicated at the beginning of my interruption, my fast was precipitated by a foxhole - one I've been in for nearly 4 years now.

One paradigm shifting moment came when I was at a concert that I really wasn't enjoying very much. But because of the change of environment (I guess), suddenly I experienced a paradigm shift where more deeply in my heart I realized that God is my primary context and not my foxhole.

I realized that I need to reframe - to reorient to what was real rather than merely my perception of what was real (I'm fully aware of the fact that sentence is subject to serious postmodern deconstruction). My default setting was to focus on my foxhole circumstances as the most significant in my life. This was imbalanced. Though this has long been something I knew in my head on this particular evening it reached my heart.

That lasted a couple of days. :) But it was good to touch it, to experience it, to feel it, to know that it was possible. It made it more believable and more attainable. It was and is encouraging.
I believe strength in Christ is attainable through faith and the power of the Holy Spirit. I'm not just throwing out phrases - I really do believe this.

And so in faith in Him I break this fast and choose to move forward.

I plan to add at least one more installment to the In the Foxhole series to summarize some of what I've learned through Psalm 39 and David Wilcox.

Thanks for reading. I write these things for two reasons: 1) to remind myself and 2) to hopefully help someone who might be in their own foxhole and needs a fresh perspective.


Noel Heikkinen said...

Welcome back, bro. Missed you a ton.

Steve K. said...

Welcome back, Stephen! I'm especially interested to hear about the things you've learned from the music of David Wilcox. My wife and I are big fans.

brad said...


your second reason for posting..."to hopefully help someone who might be in their own foxhole and needs a fresh perspective"... has at least been helpful for me. thank you.


Stephen said...

noel, steve, and brad:

thank you very much for your supportive words! It's much appreciated.

Rick said...

Glad you are back and thanks for sharing insights about your journey.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Mr. Stephen,
His grace be with us all...

I visited Grace Church about a week ago. What a big

Maybe breakfast sometime in the future.

Peace to you.

Matt Oskvarek