Jesus, I want to live in Your world,

where I’m a spectator — an enjoyer of everyone just as we are and everything just as it is, not a gladiator like I am in Dave’s world — with the pressure to be better, do better, believe better, achieve, make a difference, establish my own worthiness, feel superior to others.  When I’m living in Your world, I experience an other-worldly peace that is worth selling all to get.  I never live in Your world, except when Your Spirit freshly convicts me of the sin of INdependence/pride/worldliness/confidence-I-know-what’s-best.  Ahhh.  I look forward to Heaven when I’ll live in Your world 24/7, and never again live under The Curse where I care about my own worthiness, feel alone, feel pressure to excel, as though my life is UP TO DAVE.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, promoting Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness to Christians, especially DAVE, that we might actually have something seculars want

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Thank You for the bliss of

cluelessness-I-know-what’s-best, another way of describing dependency on You instead of me, that comes from fresh conviction of sin — especially the sin of INdependence.  Thank You that fresh conviction enables me to CONFESS and be freshly dead to my flesh and its confidence-it-knows-what’s-best.  Ahhh.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, whose biggest need every day all day, is training in cluelessness, that the seculars around him might actually want something he has

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I work harrrd at being a wonderful person.

Why?  I want others to believe I’m wonderful and DAVE wants to believe it too.  But I’m coming to see that it’s not what I DO that reveals how wonderful or horrible I am, but rather what I THINK.  And nobody knows that but Dave.  And Jesus.  Truth is, I’m NOT a wonderful person.  Oh I’ve loved and served many, many people, who are convinced I’m wonderful, because I’m good at being credible, believable.  And while I DO care for others, deeply, and enjoy them, there’s a dark side to my loving/serving them well, that’s rooted in my wounds from childhood that made me feel rejected, worthless, and my subsequent, unconscious strategy to be wonderful to prove to myself and others, that I’m not worthless.

As I’m more aware of the real Dave’sFlesh, I dowannabe working so harrrd to be something I am not.  All my life, I’ve tried to be something I’m not, and becoming a Christian at age 24, just exacerbated the problem.  Since then, I’ve tried even harrrrder to be wonderful — a wonderful Christian.  The bar is higher, the pressures greater.  So it’s a relief to come out of the closet today about who my flesh really is.  I’d like to work less hard at being wonderful, but I’ve been at this for so long, that I’m not even sure where to begin, to change, or even HOW to be different than I am.  Maybe just being more aware of my dark side of why I serve others, will help.  I hope so.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, promoting Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness, that Christians, including DAVE, might have integrity/authenticity with seculars, so we’re not stumbling blocks to them considering/embracing Jesus, and so Christians with unusual self-awareness might feel less lonely — have believing friends to whom they can relate

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The nicest thing Jesus ever does for me

is to EXPOSE my unbelief to me, especially my unbelief in His sovereign reign over every detail of every life.  EXPOSE my INdependency to me — my feeling ALONE, UP TO DAVE.  Ahhhh, so relieving to CONFESS my unbelief.  The pressure I was feeling EVAPORATES.  Jack Miller once told his wife Rose Marie that the starting place for faith, is conviction of sin.  Such a helpful concept to me ever since I heard that, many years ago.  So when I feel stuck, distant from Jesus, it’s so helpful to ask for the Spirit afresh, sometimes claiming the promise in Luke 11, that if we ask for the Spirit, He will give us the Spirit.  I’ve found it helpful to surrender the timetable, when the prayer is answered.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, thankful afresh for the convicting work of Jesus’ Spirit, wondering if the seculars around him are noticing the difference at times

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I feel entitled to an easier life.

As I compare myself to others, they seem to have easier lives.  They can eat whatever they want, go wherever they want, breath whatever they want, sleep soundly through the night, don’t need to do all the extracurricular health regimens I need to do, and they feel normal all the time.  They don’t experience the suffering/harrrd that I face every day.  Why can’t I be LIKE THEM?

If I had an easIER life, would I give a hoot about Jesus, and His imputed worthiness?  An easIER life might work for others, but I don’t think it would work for me, because I’m just not naturally dependent on Jesus.  I need harrrrd to motivate me to run to Jesus, to embrace the suffering that leads to perseverance, that leads to character, that leads to hope/faith/dependency.  My biggest need is yet-more Jesus-dependency, the pearl of great price, worth selling all to get.  But my flesh HATES the suffering necessary to get me there.  My flesh wants painless sanctification, wants EASY sanctification.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, wanting an easier way, except when freshly convicted of the sin of INdependence/confidence-he-knows-what’s-best

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I am PettyDave.

I’m shocked.  I just never saw it previously.  I should change my email address to pettydave@sent.com.  I am consumed with petty issues/concerns all day long, every day, especially when I’m all alone, with no audio input, just silence.  Or out in public by myself, observing others.  Jesus has been EXPOSING my flesh to me.  My life is all about ME.  And the petty ways I attempt to feel superior to others.  Mean and ungenerous in small, trifling things, is Dave.  Except.  When I’ve been freshly convicted of the sin of INdependence/pride/worldliness/pettiness.  Freshly undone, contrite, I’m able to enjoy everyone just as they are, and everything just as it is, for we are all His creations.  So much happier.  He did not create them for me to analyze, criticize, judge, but for me to enjoy.

Jesus, in Matt 25: “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to Me.”  I wonder if it’s even possible to really enjoy Jesus, if I’m not really enjoying all His creations?

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, freshly grateful that the grace of Jesus is for sinners, flows downhill to even the most-lowly-and-petty of humans, having no worthiness of our own

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My struggle to understand Scripture

only bothers, irritates, discourages me, when I’m proud/confident-I-know-what’s-best/INdependent/worldly.  Understanding-idolatry has been a human problem, and an unconfessed sin, since the Garden.  My flesh HATES me not understanding Scripture perfectly, HATES me feeling less-than, inadequate, weak, needy, and LOVES me feeling strong, confident, LOVES easy, HATES harrrd, LOVES when I get my way, reach my goal, feel successful, competent, capable, witty, charming.

But when I’ve been freshly convicted of my INdependence — my understanding-idolatry — my wanting to feel good about myself apart from Jesus — my dissatisfaction with Jesus and His imputed worthiness, I’m liberated about not understanding Scripture perfectly,  I don’t mind at all, being pitied by others for my weakness, neediness, inadequacy, dependency on Jesus.  Ahhh, I’m not alone.  My life and my understanding of things, is not up to ME, but up to my SovereignShepherdJesus.  Ahhh.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, extra grateful right now for the convicting work of the Spirit

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I’m not alone, I’m not alone…

Helps me so much to be reminded that I’m not alone, that Jesus is living His life through me, in total control of every detail, so I can relax and be curious/expectant to see what He does NEXT, in me, others, circumstances.  Ahhh.  Pressure’s off.  But I can’t seem to graduate from needing to be reminded.  I spend forty minutes in a portable sauna, every other day, while listening to an online sermon on sovereignty or providence.  Ahhh.  Maybe one day I won’t be so sovereignty-reminder needy, but I ain’t there yet.  Too much of my life is UP TO DAVE.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, championing Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness, because he wants the Jesus in him to overflow — be contagious, to the seculars around him

To receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com