Tuesday, August 16, 2011


I haven’t posted anything on here in a while. There are plenty of reasons (excuses) as to why I haven’t, but I think really it boils down to priorities and focus. Over the past year or so as I have written on here it is clear that I am not a fan of allowing my job dictate what my priorities are. However, that is exactly what has been happening over the last few months. Maybe that happened because I stopped reading as much (Bible or otherwise), or maybe I just got a bit lazy/burned out. Whatever it is, I still don’t like it. I know I need to get back to where my beliefs drive my priorities and actions. I know I need to live an elevated life that rises above this planet and trusts in God instead of jobs. So, the next several posts will be focused on that thought: living an elevated life.
I think the real reason I want to write about this elevation idea is how I have felt over the past few months. I knew something was severely off, but I mostly just ignored that feeling, kept my head down, and did my job. I still was busy with church work. I still did some of what I should be doing at home. But, it was just that, doing. The motivation wasn’t what it should have been. In fact, I am pretty sure there wasn’t a true motivation. It really was just getting it done for the sake of getting it done. Yuck!
Now, I want to get out of that funk. I want to get back to the excitement and passion I saw when I reread several of these posts from last year. And it all comes down to living with a God-centered motivation. That then drives my priorities, desires, and actions. I think that’s the simple definition of what I am calling the elevated life: living in a way that your actions and priorities reflect a God-centered life of loving and doing for others. This is then juxtaposed against the culture-centered life where moving up the ladder and getting stuff is the priority.
Alright, as with most things I want to be sure I am grounded in the Bible with my thoughts. In that mindset, I started thinking about all of the examples of Biblical characters who strove for that elevated life. It’s easy to come up with some of them: Abraham, Joseph, Noah, Moses, Joshua (and Caleb), Job, Elijah/Elisha and most of the prophets (especially Hosea), David. Of course all of those are old testament folks, so how about the New? Well, Paul (not Saul), Peter, James, John, the Centurion, Stephen, Phillip, Barnabas, Onesimus, Timothy, and of course Jesus. Those and many others are great examples of living an elevated life in the face of the distorted culture. All of those, except for one, also are examples of striving for an elevated life and yet still being prone to failing. So, they really are good for us to learn from. Then I also want to look at examples in the Bible of those who didn’t strive for the elevated life and instead ran after the world. Adam/Eve, Cain, Lot, Sarah, Jacob, King Saul (and several other Kings of Israel), Jonah, Israel as a whole actually. Add to that Ananias/Sapphira, the rich young ruler, the mom of James and John, Saul (before Paul) sort of, and maybe the easiest example, Judas.
To be sure, there are many more examples of each. And some of the people in those lists could at times be on both sides of the fence, which is why I really want to spend some time on this idea. I can easily see in myself times where I have aligned to an elevated life and plenty of times where I didn’t I want to learn from these examples how to spend more time elevated closer to God. I also want to more easily recognize those times when I am not.
With that, I think I will start with a little dive into King Saul first. The guy started out so right, yet ended so far off the mark. What happened there? How can I avoid that same pattern? Who can I look to for help in calling me out? And can I even manage to put aside the pride that seemed to blind the King?


Leah Pugh said...

I really enjoy reading your blog! I am glad you are back!

Mark said...

Thanks Leah! I cannot tell you how great a release this thing is for me, so I am hopeful to stay with it a bit more for sure.