Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Breaking Lamps at the Library

Last night in our bi-weekly Men's Group, we talked about avoidance - a problem that greatly impacted King David's family during the latter part of his reign. Despite the fact that his son Amnon raped his daughter Tamar, David never confronts Amnon about this but merely allows the anger and resentment to build. On top of this, when Absalom, Tamar's full brother gets wind of what's happened, he too fails to confront Amnon. Instead, Absalom takes matters into his own hands and has Amnon killed. Afraid for his own life and the rebuke of his father David, Absalom takes off for Geshur and hides out there for three years, again avoiding the need to deal honestly with what's occured.

Not surprisingly, we still avoid things. Personally, I avoid conflict. In most cases, I would rather run in the opposite direction than face conflict head on. Only a few days ago, I was at the local library where I did something that I'm still embarrassed about. I knocked over a lamp, conveniently located on one of the tables, and it shattered into hundreds of pieces. A glass lamp in a library of all things! What were they thinking! After I did this, the little boy in me wanted to run as fast as I could for the front doors in order to get out of there before I was caught. Then, the pastor in me realized that instead of avoiding the fact that I'd broken something, I needed to fess up and go tell someone. I quickly found a wonderful lady named Faith who was willing to help me pick up the pieces while I apologized profusely for my blunder.

All this to say, that although it's tough at times to face up to the situations that life offers us (including those embarrassing situations that happen every so often when we'd rather run instead), one of the core values that I'm convinced that God has given everyone is honesty. If we're avoiding conflict, then we're not dealing honestly with it. So, despite how difficult it might be, face up to whatever circumstances you find yourself in. I can promise you that you'll feel better for doing so.