A "Radical" Life
Striving to live a life less-ordinary.

picking yourself up

If I'm honest, I'd have to admit that I'm a lousy follower of Jesus.  "Inconsistent" doesn't even begin to describe me.  One week, I'll be so fired-up and confident and passionate about all that God has done and is doing in me, and two weeks later I'll have become so bogged down with "life" and busyness that I'll be feeling distant from God and worn out, trudging through life.

There have been multiple occasions in my life where I have felt as if, in that moment, I am becoming a true follower of Christ for the first time.  Crazy, I know.  After all, I grew up in a Christian home.  I was baptized when I was 12.  I was a leader in our church youth group, went to a Bible college, earned a degree in youth/music ministry, and have now been in ministry for about 13 years (yeesh...is that right?...wow).  You'd think I'd have a pretty good grasp on the whole God thing.

And yet, I have these moments (like today) where suddenly, things click, almost as if it's for the first time.  It's all so clear.  The story of God and, more specifically, Jesus, makes more sense than ever.  It's a "aha!" moment that translates into a deeper, more mature and much more bold faith.  A faith that radically alters my prayer life.  My family life.  My ministry.  My relationships with others.  My finances.  My possessions.  Everything.

So things are great right now.  The reason?  God continues to pursue and wreck me, even when I push Him to the side.  That, and I refuse to stay in such a place of dry place.  When I'm there, I feel as if I've been hit by a linebacker in the chest, and I'm lying on the ground gasping for air.  I have a choice in that moment to keep lying there, hoping for the best, or to fight to pick myself off the ground.  Allowing God to be anything but central to my life leaves me feeling weak and lost, wandering around like a lost puppy. I lose all sense of direction and purpose, and I HATE it.

So lately, I've been taking more time to study and think and pray, even if I haven't felt like doing it.  And this morning, I took about 3 hours to shut up and listen.  I got away from the noise and stared solely at Gods creation and didn't say hardly a word.  Turns out, God wanted to talk.

It's inevitable that if you pursue God, you'll find Him, because He's pursuing you too.  It's not as if you start chasing Him and He runs the other direction.  If you're bogged down with life right now, start fighting to get back up.  Change some priorities.  Create some time to breathe and think.  Pursue God...He won't ignore you.

Bro, awesome thoughts! Sometimes I think that even as ministers we are the worst at taking personal retreat days. Having been in church ministry it is even worse. I have had Sr. Ministers tell me that I didn't need to go on a personal retreat (or spiritual retreat if you want to use the terminology). Now that I am with Impact Campus Ministries, it is expected and required that we take a "personal retreat day" to rest and be still, allowing God to talk and renew our spirits. I still wrestle with it at times, blocking things out. Interesting that I would read your post today.

Thanks Tom! Yeah, we do the same thing at Live Oak with the required spiritual retreat days. LOVE them! I wish more people would do it. Miss you Neyharts!

Jeremiah Smith

Jeremiah Smith


I'm striving to live a life less-ordinary. As followers of Christ our lives should not look like everybody elses. We should be more giving, more loving, more passionate, more sure, more...radical. But we're not. We blend in and desperately want to fit in. This blog is my journey toward to a "radical" life that doesn't look like the rest of the world.


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Atlanta, Georgia, United States
A Hoosier, a Buckeye and two Rwandans out on a mission to serve the world. Missionaries for Rwanda through AFRICA NEW LIFE MINISTRIES. We are entirely donor-supported, so if you'd like to partner with us through prayer or finances, we would LOVE to set up a time to chat!