Today I got my first ever spray tan. I'm still feeling a little sticky and the spray artist said the full tan color develops as the day goes on so I can't say yet if I love it or not. But I WON the tan in a 'like my facebook page' drawing so I was thrilled with that just to start. Nice to have it happen just 2 days before my class reunion. If I can't instantly drop 20+ pounds in the next 48 hours, I'll go with glowing and healthy!! (fake tan or not)
Now the subject of FAKE has been on my mind all week. Our pastor drove home a mean message Sunday and talked about the Fakes and the Flakes, neither of which could EVER be applied to Jesus and the life He lived. I've been chewing on this for days and realize I don't want to be a fake Christian; saying one thing and letting my actions prove otherwise. I don't want to be a flake either. And I know I fail in this regard from time to time. I make a commitment to something or someone, planning with all my might to see it through with everything I've got. And something happens to derail me and I feel like such a loser for not completing the challenge or for letting someone down.
Probably one of the best examples of my flakiness has to do with prayer. Awful thing to admit but I wonder if I am the only person who does this.... how often do we hear about a struggle someone is going through, an illness or any PRAYER REQUEST where we say "I'll be praying for you." A lot I am sure. And I always am sincere when I say it. But honestly? If I don't pray right then and there, I know that prayer request can get lost in the shuffle of my brain and then I feel like such a FLAKE for not following through! For awhile now, I have been trying a new angle where I try to pray right on the spot. Not an "I will pray for you" platitude, but a put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is sort of thing and offer a prayer right there. I am making a point now when I read a facebook status that prompts me to comment "praying" to be preceded with a prayer for that need before I even post my promise.
I think too often I get steamed up about situations and it is so much easier to vent about what is wrong with things than to take it to the Ultimate Authority and pray about it!! Our nation, our leaders and using Facebook to vent comes to mind.... yet fervent prayer is what a Real Follower of Jesus would do first and foremost.
The Participation Factor is the other thing that has me examining the fake and flake danger. Is it enough to just feel bad about a situation? Shouldn't we be also motivated to DO something? Get involved somehow? Write a letter? Send financial contributions? Join the cause? This is another area I am feeling challenged in. I'll be the first to admit I'm not passionate about a lot of causes out there. Yes, I sponsor a child in Africa, I donate to charitable organizations and I go on mission trips when I feel so led. But I'm not a political animal and I don't want to be. And that's okay because we are all called to different things. I'd much rather skip over certain news headlines and ignore the crisis but there must be something that stirs my heart to compassionate action. I guess this might be an area where I can invite the Holy Spirit in to stir something up in me.
So, my 2 challenges for myself are to
2. Participate more.
I invite you to hold me accountable.