Why I Write These:
These are written in honor of my grandfather, Leon Milton Buttermore, who has a memory that I am envious of, and I hope that by doing this I am able to be the kind of man who starts to treasure the things given him.
Godly thought of the day:
Psalm 1:3 says: “That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers.“
It hit me as I was reading this today. This psalm isn’t about the wicked man or the blessed man. It’s not about the fruit or the tree or the leaves. It’s about the stream. Read throughout Scripture and you find that being led by streams of still water is a sign of covenantal blessing. Read the end of Ezekiel and see the river of life flowing out from the temple. See the river in Heaven in Revelation. See the Lord declare himself a fountainhead of life all over Isaiah and Jeremiah.
The Lord, the stream of life and fountainhead of prosperity, he is the central part of this passage. And ultimately, it is being firmly embedded and planted by this stream that makes all the difference in the world. Trees never stop thirsting. So let us delight in the word of God, the roots that connect us to this fountainhead. Let us have an unquenchable thirst for this thing!
Favorite meeting of the day:
Met with John Mueller today and it was really, really encouraging! I felt like I was able to share some things on my heart and received good counsel back. We spent two hours talking about life and God and how to live the Christian life well, and I frankly could have done that all day.
Hardest part of my day:
One thing that was difficult in my meeting with John was this very blog. It’s come to my attention that I’m very raw in this blog post. I guess I knew that, but I also hadn’t really played forward what that could mean. It’s not an issue yet, but there’s some indications that sharing some of the things I go through, particularly sexual struggles, would come across poorly. For example, I do help with youth and there are potentially young ladies reading this. I had never thought that I may be the first person exposing some of them to certain things. I had never contemplated how that would make a parent feel. Not only cheated of what, hopefully, they would have explained in their own time. But there is also potential that I would be viewed poorly by someone who does not understand the heart of why I write these. I never meant for them to be “public” per se. I do share them with my family so that they could keep up with me somewhat, but that is the only “audience” I ever intended to gather on here.
While I hoped that this would make me a more empathic, understandable figure, I think there are opportunities for this to be a more divisive platform to write out very raw, very honest struggles on than I first imagined. So, I may be changing how these daily journals work. I’m not sure what I will do quite yet. But I think something needs to be changed. I am learning more and more that I am a fire hose. If I’m on, I am on. And, frankly, I feel very odd compared to many people and I’m realizing that most people do not genuinely appreciate fire hoses. I fear that, despite claims that the world just wants people to be raw and genuine, that this is not as nearly often the case as so many people would claim. I believe that fewer people are really comfortable with this notion than would say they are. So I need to figure out what I am to do, but I must be sensitive, particularly to my brothers and sisters in Christ. Ephesians 5 says to submit to one another out of reverence of Christ. While I feel no shame in what I’ve done, if what I do plagues the conscience of anyone I hold dear, then so help me I can give up my liberties for those around me and I shall. That does not necessarily mean that it is always easy to do this when I feel confident in my position, but I trust it will be rewarding in terms of honoring God and others.
Favorite moment of the day:
Not a “moment” per se, but today was moving from a discipling relationship to talking with John to immediately sitting down at work only to talk to one of our other church members about an equally weighty matter. It energized me greatly to experience this. I literally could do that all day, every day. I love it. I love being in the mess with people. I don’t love the mess. But people are there, and I want to be with them. I’ve been in the mess. Really, I am part of the mess. So how can I turn my back on those seeking solid footing in the quagmire of sin that seeks to ensnare us?
What was the weather like today?:
Gosh, it’s been humid and muggy! I don’t like it! I hope it rains soon so that it will be over.
Most unfaithful moment of my day:
Today is just one of those days where you learn how you can accidentally hurt people without even thinking or wanting to. John helped me understand that. I’m far more careless with my life than I’d like to think I am. I do and say hurtful things without ever desiring to be hurtful. I hope people will be charitable with me in all my passive sins that I commit against them. They are many and I grieve over them even as I realize that this is exactly why Christ is so necessary and I cannot be crushed by this realization. But hopefully as I strive towards Christlikeness, it will happen less and less, though I may not know if it is true or not.
What am I currently reading?:
Daily Bible Reading – Nehemiah 8-10
Church History by Eusebius – No reading for this today.
On the Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther – No reading for this today.
Holiness by J.C. Ryle – Going to read some of this tonight.
Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper – a life lost is better than a wasted life. A compelling premise for the book. I am curious to see how he plays this out. I have heard the sermon that it is based on, and so I have a solid understanding of the general premise of the book. But we’re reading it for youth, so trying to keep up with it.
Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis – His philosophical musing on how planets are the empty thing compared to outer space is very compelling. Particularly how he highlights the heavens being so much superior the dimness of earths. But then what he does where he says that where light runs out, what if that is similarly the dimness ending in light of something greater. You can feel C.S. Lewis wanting to hint at what this character will come to recognize in time. It’s very good writing.
I also am intrigued to get some cultural commentary. He describes Ransom to be far less heroic in his mind than he actually is, and that is because the clash of the dreams of what war would be vs. what he actually experienced in war diminished his view of himself. I wonder how many times that is true of us. How many times did we have great dreams, but the reality shook us and now we are hunkering down, cowering in fear when in truth we have far greater capacity for courage and power than we really believe?
What was for dinner?:
Nothing. Going to the drive-in with people tonight and saving some room for candy and drinks there!
Song of the day:
Cannons by Phil Wickahm – Honestly, just got won over by the drums. I need to listen to it more to get more depth of insight on why I like this song.
Quote of the day:
“Sensitivity is a man’s calling.” — John Mueller
Summarizing a much larger point that I feel that John was making. You don’t hear people counsel men like this very often, and I am grateful for great pastors at my church.
Prayer of the day:
Lord, make me sensitive. Make me like your Son, Christ Jesus. Help me to be this way because I am firmly planted by the stream that helps a tree bear fruit and produces leaves that never wither.