“If God doesn’t rule your mundane then He doesn’t rule your life, because the mundane is where we live” – Paul Tripp
“I can’t wait to get this off my chest. Just wait until my roommates hear about this!”
I thought as I slammed my car door. I was anxious to get inside and tell my roommates about my frustrating coffee date with a friend. Surely they would relate with my frustration and offer some support.
“It was just kind of annoying, because she’s already processed through this decision a million times. Yet she still felt the need to talk through it all again with me. I didn’t see the point of us even getting together! So I kept my advice short for her sake to help push her towards a decision”, I told my roommates as I started chopping some veggies for a salad.
Here it comes, I thought. This is where my roommates will agree with me that I have a right to be irritated. Surely they would be annoyed too if they were in my shoes! Besides, my roommates knew that I loved this particular friend. Apart from this passing moment, I am overall a really great friend! Who could blame me for some irritation and ‘vent time’?
What I received in return was not friendly validation for my own comfort. No, what I received in return was an opportunity to let God rule over the mundane moments in my life. To rule over the 10,000 little moments that make up my relationships. My roommates suddenly became God’s tool to mold my heart and to put me in the position to experience his sweet grace.
In a tender tone one of my roommates spoke up, “Maybe she’s feeling insecure about this decision and so that’s why she’s feeling the need to talk through it again. It seems like she really wants to do the right thing. When you feel unsure about a decision you talk with us about it multiple times. Don’t we all have those moments where we are hard to handle? Aren’t you hard to handle sometimes too?”
Heat dripped over my face. So many emotions were hitting me at once I couldn’t decipher one from the other. I felt my defenses rising. I looked back at my cutting board to hide my face and resumed chopping.
“Well yeah I see what you are saying, but my circumstances were different…”, I trailed off.
I felt a wave of embarrassment slap me, hard.
I knew my roommate was right. I came face to face with ugliness in my heart that I too often deceive myself into thinking isn’t there. I knew I had a decision to make in that moment. I could either keep my defenses up or I could let down my image and allow my roommates to see the real me. “How could I fail to give her grace when I do the same thing?”, I said, as tears began to fall.
My roommate, sensitive to the conviction and the guilt that was washing over me, moved towards me and said, “Hey, this is why we need the gospel. You and me, Cru staff after all! We’re not perfect. This is why Jesus died on the cross. He died for this moment right now.”
While it was so painful to have my “I’m not that bad” image crash to the ground, I was so thankful that God used my roommate to forbid me to pass over my irritation like it was nothing. This moment challenged me to look at the significant depth of brokenness beneath it. Amidst it all, God was there waiting, just waiting for me to respond to His convicting prick and let down my defenses so He could jump in with His transforming grace and lavish it all over me.
I was reminded of this pivotal gospel moment a couple weeks ago while listening to Paul Tripp speak on relationships. He opened one of his sessions saying, “If God doesn’t rule your mundane He doesn’t rule your life, because the mundane is where we live”. He went on to explain how our relationships are made up of 10,000 ordinary little moments (Which, honestly reminded me of that song from Rent, “Seasons of Love”, anyone else know what I am talking about?). We often quickly pass over some of those moments thinking, “That was just a little slip up, but this person knows I love them so it doesn’t matter”. God wants to rule over these mundane moments of our lives and use them to shape and refine us.
Hebrews 3:12-15 says, “See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end. As has just been said: ‘Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.’”
We are so blind, aren’t we? We desperately need help to see our sin. Without my roommates that day I would have gone on living unaware of my sin and thinking, “hey I’m really not that bad, everybody gets irritated sometimes!” Paul Tripp described the type of community we need to tell us about our sin as an “Intentionally intrusive, Christ centered, grace driven, redemptive, community”.
He left us with the three things he prays each day.
1) God I am a man in desperate need of your help today.
2) I pray in your grace you would send helpers my way.
3) And Lord please give me the humility to receive the help when it comes my way.
Before I go I just wanted to give you all an update on the count down, 275 days left! 275 days until what you might ask? DCC 2013! Think about how many mundane moments you are going to live until then. Let God rule over your mundane moments and pray that He will send you helpers and that He will give you the humility to receive that help when it comes.