Posted by: zephaniah317 | December 22, 2009


Well, it’s been a long time since my last post. There are reasons for this. These reasons might be explained later, in other posts, but in the meantime, I have something to talk about, it feels, for the first time in a long time. I have taken the two weeks surrounding Christmas and New Years off from work to relax and recharge and undo the damage done when all I did was xbox it last year at this time. One of the first steps I did this morning was pick up “The Way of the Wild Heart” by John Eldredge, which I had laid down sometime in the past year, possibly even in ’08. The reason I laid it down was because I had come to the next to last stage that he describes in the masculine journey, The King. I believed, at the time, that I was not ready to read this section because I believed that, emotionally and spiritually, I was still back in the Cowboy or Warrior or even Beloved Son stage, which precede the King stage, in some cases by a lot. But then I read an article on ESPN this past week by Gene Wojciechowski about Tiger Woods (we all know what’s going on there), and “who do we believe in now?” in sports:

Someone will fill the void left by Woods’ indefinite self-exile. His return to a tee box, perhaps sooner than expected, will be a mega-event, but never again will I look at him the same way. He was different, but now he isn’t.

So who takes his place? LeBron James? Sure, but do we know The King better than we did Woods? Maybe. His on-the-court and commercial personality is more open and playful than Tiger’s. Does that translate into character? Hope so. Think so.

Peyton Manning? Sure, he seems as genuine as anyone in sports today. Intense and demanding, but not afraid to mock himself on an SNL United Way parody. Approachable in ways that Woods never was.

Tom Brady? George Clooney cool.

Drew Brees? Stand-up guy Velcro’d to the hip of his New Orleans community.

Donovan McNabb? Has withstood the blast furnace of Philly, Terrell Owens, etc., with mostly grace and dignity.

Tim Tebow? An athlete who understands and embraces every aspect of the baggage that comes with sports celebrity. He wants the responsibility of setting a standard.

OK, Tom Brady might be George Clooney cool (I saw an interview with him once where he actually couldn’t define the word “pressure”…that’s awesome), but his infidelity takes him off my list. OK, enough editor’s comments…That last paragraph caught my eye. “He wants the responsibility of setting a standard.” And I realized that my life, pockmarked as it has been, has been more about just surviving and hoping to gain God’s favor than setting a standard. Now, of course, I’m not talking about setting a standard as a sports icon (unless I’m on the xbox WAAAAYYYY too much). But how often do I want to set a standard on being a man of God, or improve the standard of how people should be loved, how relationships should be cultivated, how community should be encouraged? I haven’t done this enough. My heart has not been inclined in this direction. Then, this morning, reading in Eldredge’s book:

It is a matter of heart, my brothers. There are many offices a man might fulfill as a King – father of a household, manager of a department, pastor of a church, coach of a team, prime minister of a nation – but the heart required is the same. “The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases” (Prov. 21:1 NIV). The passage is often used to explain the sovereignty of God, in that he can do with a man whatever he pleases. Certainly, God is that sovereign. But I don’t think that’s the spirit of this passage. God rarely forces a man to do something against his will, because he would far and above prefer that he didn’t have to, that the man wills to do the will of God. “Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve” (Josh. 24:15 NIV). What God is after is a man so yielded to him, so completely surrendered, that his heart is easily moved by the Spirit of God to the purposes of God.

That kind of heart makes for a good king.

And so, I have become aware of how much I have tried to “create my own little kingdom” in my life, more hoping that it aligns with God’s, rather than simply asking the man himself, “God, what do you want me to do ?

I want my heart to be like a watercourse that He directs wherever He pleases. I want to be more than just the beloved son who is loved unconditionally. I want to be a sword in his hand, or a plowshare, or an encouragement, whatever He needs me to be in that moment.



  1. Somehow I missed this when you first posted it. So glad to see you here! Thanks for sharing and it’s good stuff to think about. Really good stuff.

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