Carlos Whittaker is a worship leader out of Atlanta who just released his first album. And it's awesome. It's called Ragamuffin Soul. Click here for the iTunes link.
In his song on the album, "We Will Worship You," Carlos quotes a beautiful and powerful puritan prayer. It goes like this:
Save us from these comforts
Break us of our need for the familiar
Spare us any joy that's not of You
And we will worship You
I love it because this prayer talks about being uncomfortable. And I'm finding that to be uncomfortable is a good, healthy thing. It forces self-examination and brings change that's more than just a buzzword. In the midst of uncomfortableness, real, powerful, life-giving change rises.
What makes you uncomfortable? I can't answer that, but I can tell you what makes me uncomfortable.
1. Grace. Grace is loving your neighbors no matter what. If someone hurts you, you love them. If someone lies to you. You love them. This idea makes me extremely uncomfortable. Because it doesn't seem fair. But grace isn't fair... God's unending love isn't fair. Jesus dying on the cross isn't fair. But boy am I glad it happened.
2. Giving money to the church. There's so much I could be doing with this money... but alas, God gives so much to us. So we should give back.
3. Mission work. Just being honest here. It's the ultimate way of stepping out of my comfort zone for me... but it's a big step. For some reason it scares me. John Wesley invites us to serve with a warm heart and active hands, but for some reason, I just get really uncomfortable when I think about helping the homeless or traveling on a mission trip to an unknown place. It's something I intend to do a lot of this year, though, with RISE. Because I want my heart to be warm and my hands active. (Hold me to that, okay?)
I'm just going to keep praying that prayer. "Save us from our comforts and break us of our need for the familiar..."
I can then change myself, the community, and be a small part of changing the world.
I'll leave you with this video featuring Carlos Whittaker and a new friend singing his song, "God of Second Chances." It was probably uncomfortable for a moment for everyone involved, but so powerful...