Why do I wannabe content?

For a follower of Jesus, contentment is a litmus-paper test for Jesus-dependency. Why do I wannabe Jesus-dependent? Because I know it’s right, and I wannabe a good follower of Jesus. Why do I wannabe a good follower of Jesus? Because I wanna feel good about myself. Jesus and His imputed worthiness are not ENOUGH for me. I ALSO wannabe a good Christian. No such thing as a good Christian. We’re all bad Christians. Jesus came for the likes of US. Grace flows DOWNhill to the failures, losers, needy ones, at the bottom. We don’t like the lowly bottom. We don’t like being great examples of bad examples. We wannabe on TOP. Admired by all for our wonderfulness, our outward obedience. So we live in denial of the depth of our prideful self-absorption, hidden from others, and from ourselves.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, preaching Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness to Christians — especially DAVE, hoping the Spirit will be poured out on all believers in our day, so Christians are like Jesus to surrounding seculars

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The only Christians who experience contentment


are the freshly humble — the freshly Jesus-dependent — the freshly dead to self.  Impossible to experience contentment without the convicting work of the Holy Spirit, opening our eyes to see how DIScontent we are, with who we are, how we are, what we do, where we live, what we drive, what we can afford, and with our health.  Everything around us in this world woos us to malcontentedness, looking for some way, shape or form to IMPROVE our lives so we are happIER.

The enemy of contentment, is agenda, rooted in confidence-we-know-what’s-best for us and those we love.  Only the content are curious/expectant to see what SovereignShepherdJesus does NEXT, in us, others, circumstances.  Only the content experience happiness. Only the content are thankful for everyone just as we are, and everything just as it is.  Only the content love like Jesus. Only the content reproduce — are fruitful with nonChristians. Only the proud do not reproduce — are like seed sown on thorny soil, choked by the cares of this world so we do not reproduce.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, Christian malcontent, freshly grateful that Jesus came for sicko’s not the healthy, that grace flows downhill to sinners, failures, at the bottom — the proud who know they are proud

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If you’re going through extreme suffering

you can either wallow in self-pity, or you can live in denial of the suffering with a positive mental attitude, focusing on the positives, ignoring the negatives.  OR.  You can THANK Jesus for the extreme suffering.  My flesh likes either self-pity or denial, but my flesh knows NOTHing about delivering happiness to Dave.  Jesus uses extreme suffering to retrain me in a much-better way to live: as a Jesus-dependent, clueless-I-know-what’s-best, trusting that He’s in charge and is delivering precisely what is best, so I’m curious/expectant to see what He does NEXT, in me, others, circumstances.  Ahhh.  Extreme suffering is paaainful, costly, but when it comes from the hand of a Loving Savior who knows exactly what we need, it’s a BARGAIN.  The happiness flowing from fresh sanity doesn’t last long, however.  I’m in constant need of the Spirit’s fresh work in my life.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, being grown by Jesus as a thank-er for evathang, wondering if the seculars around him are noticing the difference

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This is only for Christians in rugged circumstances.

I feel ENTITLED to easier

when I have fresh suffering on top of extended suffering.  Unless.  I’m freshly convicted by Jesus’ Spirit of being confident-I-know-what’s-best, wise in my own eyes, leaning on my own understanding.  Then, it’s, “Give me whatever is best, Jesus.  Don’t give me the easy my flesh demands.  I believe a little bit that You’re in charge, know exactly what you’re doing, love me immeasurably, are worthy of my trust, but help my unbelief, and please forgive my unbelief.”

Bigtime sufferers are frequent strugglers to believe.  And our flesh HATES weakness, HATES us struggling.  If everyone else were bigtime sufferers, it’d be easier.  It’s pert-near impossible to not feel ENTITLED when others seem to have easier, normal.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, a struggler to believe, especially when he feels lousy

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Jesus is Lord of the Waves.

And when we take our eyes off Him, and look at the waves, we momentarily lose two huge benefits of Jesus in this life —  joy and peace.  He lovingly controls the waves of our lives — the circumstances we face each day, in such a way that we sometimes get fearful, or frustrated, or discouraged, and have great motivation to turn our eyes back to Him.  Ahhh.

Our flesh is convinced we need easy circumstances, but easy just motivates us to be control freaks, INdependents, orphans.  So Jesus sometimes thwarts the plans of our flesh for easy, and lovingly gives us scary, frustrating, discouraging waves, and after fighting the waves, trying to control the waves, we see the futility of our INdependence, and have great motivation to turn our eyes back to Him.  Ahhh.

And it’s only when our eyes and thoughts are fixed on Him that we are channels of grace into the lives of others, especially nonChristians.  Seed cast on fertile soil that reproduces a hundred, sixty or thirty.  WOW.  Not mere human power.

What helps ME fix my eyes and thoughts on Jesus?  Sovereignty-awareness.  Seeing Him behind everyone and everything, so I’m able to enjoy each of His creations, instead of judging them, competing with them, finding fault with them, being irritated with them.  I can’t seem to graduate from needing to be reminded of His total sovereignty.  All day long, I’m confessing my unbelief in His sovereignty, when convicted by His Spirit, and then I’m blissfully Jesus-dependent.  For a bit.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, fixated on the waves, except when freshly convicted of the sin of INdependence

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Physical pain is a channel of grace,

but only for humble Christians — those experiencing sovereignty-awareness, thankful for everything just as it is, including the suffering of pain, believing that suffering produces perseverance, then character, then hope/faith/dependency.  Jesus USES pain to woo us back to Himself from functioning as atheists.  Impossible to be thankful for suffering unless freshly convicted of being wise in my own eyes, leaning on my own understanding, feeling ALONE and in CHARGE, as though there is no CreatorSustainer of the Universe.  Same is true for emotional pain inflicted by other humans, or by circumstances.  Only humble Christians are thank-ers for suffering.  Because only the humble REALLY believe Jesus reigns sovereignly over everyone and everything, implementing His genius plan.  Only the proud feel alone, in charge of our lives, confident-we-know-what’s-best, so we’re irritated or discouraged by any pain/hardship/suffering we experience.

All the people who love us best would vote for no pain, no suffering for us, but they only imagine they know what’s best for us.  Only Jesus knows what’s best.  And He loves us way-more than our best friends love us.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, knee-jerk proud man, except when freshly convicted of confidence-he-knows-bestTo receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com

Is a Philly-upset-win in game 7

in Toronto, the best thing?  For the Sixers team and owners?  For Philly fans?  For Dave?

I dunno.  But the Sixers know, and Philly fans know, and Dave’sFlesh knows.  In professional sports, and in life, winning is everything.  But what’s the BEST thing?  Depends on what Jesus’ genius plan is, for the team, the fans, for Dave.  I know this — no matter how much my flesh wants an upset win, I will be happiest, if I leave the outcome to Jesus, see HIM as Lord of all.  Otherwise, a win — OR A LOSS, will simply strengthen my confidence-I-know-what’s-best, and that does not nurture happiness in Dave, but nurtures circumstance-dependency, INdependency, in Dave.  Dave is happiest when he’s Jesus-dependent, and most miserable when he’s circumstance-dependent.  Will my watching the game Sunday night on TV, strengthen my INdependence, or my DEpendence?  I dunno yet. 🙂

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships

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The happiest Christians,

are thank-ers about evathang, because they’re content to be clueless-about-what’s-best, dunno what’s thankable and what’s not, trusting their SovereignShepherdJesus to know, and trust that He’s behind everyone and everything, so they can relax and enjoy the ride.  No frustration, discouragement, anxiety.  Problem is, this happiness doesn’t last long, and depends on the convicting work of the Holy Spirit.  Happiest Christians get zero credit for when they are happiest Christians.  All glory to Jesus.

By contrast, we circumstance-dependent-for-our-happiness Christians feel all alone, feel the pressure of our lives being up to US, just like our atheist friends.  We do not experience the benefit of Jesus in this life, except when freshly convicted of the sin of INdependence.

 — Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, promoting Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness to Christians — especially DAVE, hoping seculars are drawn to an overflowing Jesus in Christians

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