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Messy Business

Messy Business

“The Lord is a warrior; the Lord is his name.” (Exodus 15:3)

Wyatt is our 14 month old, and when you pieced together the etymology of his full name, he is bestowed with the gallant title of “a warrior who is famous in battle.” We had no idea what we were asking for.

There are times when we would enjoy other descriptors like docile or meek. Heck, there are days when we would settle for just slightly tone down Mayham.

But you don’t raise a warrior by dousing his fire. We might want Wyatt to stir up a little less of ruckus or flirt with a little less danger, but that will not killed the man we hope for him to become. Tries we might, there is no clean or pristine path to bold manhood end or to courageous woman hood. There are skinned knees and broken hearts and overzealous mishaps all along the way. It’s a messy business.
This is a universal reality. As we grow older, we all find that the mess doesn’t diminish. God has hopes for us, to form us into his image, to make us people who are courageously live out our created purpose in our world.

But he knows a bold faith comes only by walking many treacherous miles. So, much to our dismay, we encounter moments of terror, when we hear the dreaded news that our company is downsizing or our fiancé somehow thinks he should move on. And we wonder if we couldn’t settle for just slightly toned down Mayham.

I think Paul would commiserate well with our predicament. He has sacrificed much, given everything for the way. I would imagine he expected some sort of pay off perhaps a facility of his dream to see at least a mild awakening in Rome, a city holding much of his affection and aspiration.

It was not to be. Paul did return to the empires capital, but as a prisoner. Can find a house arrest, Paul’s best days in Rome were spent writing letters. Apparently, God hopes for Paul were something more, some thing messier.

Well we can be certain of the goodness of God‘s heart, certainty of his movements is a bit more slippery. Often times, we have no idea of what we are asking for an end and that is the crux of faith: trusting God with our dreams as well as our disappointments.

To abandon ourselves to God is to abandon ourselves to messiness. While this chaos is never out of his control, it is certainly out of ours. It’s the same-for grown-up dreamers, as well as for little warriors.

Dig Deeper:

Read Philippians 1, 2 Timothy 1:11-13 and Exodus 15:2–4.


God, I’ve been myself to you, even though I know it’ll be messy. I am certain that you are good. I trust you, even if things don’t turn out the way I’m hoping they will. Please take control.


RELEVANT’s “Deeper Walk” daily devotionals are presented by the LUMO Project, a visual translation of the four Gospels developed to engage people with scripture in a new way. You can watch the videos—which redefine the standard of visual biblical media—on YouTube, and find out more about LUMO’s mission at their website.

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