Friday, July 11, 2008

In my notebook I found this short line that I copied from Amy Carmichael's biography.* I am still finding it true:

"'Home with all its prohibitions and opportunities to die daily.'"

Maybe it sounds negative. There are so many good things about home. But wait - this is one of them. This is one of the good things about home: opportunities to die daily. Daily dwelling with other imperfect people is something God uses to sanctify me. The wait outside the bathroom door, the dirty shoes on the rug, the instrument being practiced while I'm trying to study - these are the nitty gritty parts of home-life. But they are chances to die, to look not only to my own interests but also to the interests of others, to lay down my life for my brothers. Everything can't always be the way I want it, and that's actually good. When I see dirty shoes on the rug, I can mentally take them up like a sword, and instead of pricking the negligent "culprit" with it, I can turn it on my sin nature and plunge it to the hilt whispering - "Die! Die old self that loves clean carpets more than Jesus. Die!" (I am not saying that such things should not be corrected, but sisterly nagging is not the loving way.) And in those moments, I am amazed at the rebellious strength of my old nature. I feel it kicking, screaming inside me, "No don't kill me, you'll be so much happier if you turn and nag them." Sometimes I have listened to its pleading, and let it spring back up and do its thing, and I lose the chance to die and the chance to show love. But I want to die more often so I can say this in truth:

"I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." - Gal. 2:20 ESV

* A Chance to Die - the life and legacy of Amy Carmichael, by Elisabeth Elliot

No comments: