I want to be like this boat….
It is cutting through the waves to get to more peaceful waters. It is necessary for the boat to go directly through the waves and not be motionless and try to ride the waves. Such inaction could cause the boat to capsize and danger to those onboard.
I had the opportunity to lead the Godly Play session on Sunday with the older children and the theme was the three temptations to Jesus while in the desert. With each temptation, Jesus responds back to the Voice — sharply, distinctly, directly, and in confrontation. He does not let the temptation misdirect him or divert him from his intended mission to show God’s Love in word and in action to a hurting world that needs a savior. Like the boat, Jesus goes directly through the situation.
On Wednesday, March 27, six men gathered in the Princeton Seminary Library parking lot to greet the dawn with an F3 boot camp workout and to talk about the subjects of male depression, suicide, and suicide prevention. I was touched by the level of vulnerability and honesty as men shared their knowledge and familiarity with these very difficult subjects. It is easy to let the Voice inside me tell me that I will never amount to much or that I’ll never be as good as another person. It is easy for me to believe such thoughts. Like the boat, and like Jesus, I need to confront the peril, talk back to it, and move through it to a better place and to peace of mind.
What are the tools that can help me?
I call Psalm 42 my depression psalm. The psalmist is in difficult place, yet realizes that God is his hope. Psalm 42:7b, 9- 1:
All your waves and breakers have swept over me… I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
Also, I like this promise in Romans 8:38-39:
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Consistent, honest, and with space to listen to God’s promptings and insights.
My Brothers & Sisters
It is my prayer that we grow in deeper fellowship with one another, and grow in trusting relationships where we can share our struggles, our doubts and concerns, and that we support one another. I know as a guy it is not easy for me to open up and share what is really going on within.
I am looking forward to the launch of the F3 free men's bootcamp workouts in our area, and I am looking forward to getting to know, as brothers, the men that would get involved in this. There is more on this elsewhere in the ePISTLE. The launch of F3 Princeton will be on April 13.
I remain like this boat, moving forward and through the waves, and as I tell my Level 1 and Level 2 swimming students, I am wearing my life jacket.
Your brother in Christ,