Pinterest Perfect Lives
by Jamie Canter on April 13th, 2012

I love Pinterest.  Really love pinterest.  I love all the ideas, the sharing, the organization.  I love feeling productive pinning ideas to my boards.  I love to look at all my pins and think, "Look at what I will someday do when I have time!!"  I love looking at how organized my house will be, what fabulous meals I'm going to make, and how great I am going to dress.

But somedays, I look at it and think, why am I not more disciplined to be able to do all these things?  If I just did things differently, I could achieve pinterest perfection.

But God does not want pinterest perfect lives.  Jesus lived a perfect life and he is our example - not pinterest!  But sometimes its hard to remember when we are surrounded by a barrage of examples of what we could be spending our time on.

But this is self-disciplined as defined by the world.  I want to live a life of spiritual discipline.

Look at I Corinthians 9:24-27:
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. 25 Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. 26 So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. 27 But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

Is Paul talking about a physical race?  No, he is talking about that in life, we need to live like we want to win.  And what are we winning?  We are winning souls to Christ.  Paul says throughout chapter 9 that he doesn’t let anything in his life affect his witness!  He has a goal in mind – to win people to Christ and nothing matters more than that.  In Phillipians and Thessalonians, he says that the believers that he is writing to are his prize.  So, his prize are the people that he is ministering to.  People that have come to know Jesus!

In these verses, Paul is not talking about worldly discipline, but spiritual discipline.  He says that he exercises self-control in order to share the gospel as effectively as possible.

So, when applying these to our lives, do not think of all of the task-oriented areas in which you are undisciplined, like doing dishes, laundry, writing notes, cooking, etc.   Be disciplined for the Lord, not disciplined by what the world says.

The world’s definition of discipline would have you do these things:

Do every pinterest pin you’ve ever saved to do;

                Organizing your house with everything The Container Store and Ikea has;

                          Making a fabulous dinner every night;

                                                 All while staying thin, tan and wrinkle free.

This is not discipline!  Discipline is showing God we love him through our choices and with how we share him with others.  Its being disciplined in our relationship with him.

Discipline and love go hand in hand. The Bible tells us in Titus 2:3-4 that love can be taught.  It says:

3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, 4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children,

Older women are to teach the younger women how to love their husbands. This means that we can teach each other how to love.

There are plenty of people that would not agree with that statement.  They would say love is something you feel.  You just have it or you don’t.   That is not true!  You can’t just love someone – and show them that you love them – when you feel like it.  This is why marriages fail. Because when the emotion isn’t there, people don’t want to give love.

But love requires effort – not emotion.  And so does our love for God!  Loving God means learning to be disciplined in our spiritual lives. If we only show God that we love him when we feel like it, then we’re going to find ourselves not reading the Bible, not going to church and not doing a lot of things!  Because human nature is fickle!  I know I am!   I will do just about anything for a donut!
And I have been known to shove people out of the way to get to a Round Rock donut!

No matter how much we truly love God, there will be days when we don’t feel like it or feel like showing it.

So, here is the challenge for us.  Be disciplined for the Lord.  And don’t get distracted trying to be disciplined about things that don’t affect your spiritual witness or relationship with God.  Paul was spiritually disciplined, but we don’t know what his house (tent) looked like.  We don’t know if he had piles of laundry everywhere.  Remember how Jesus chided Martha who wanted her sister Mary to help her with the household work.  Mary had been sitting listening to Jesus talk instead of helping Martha.  And Jesus said, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary.  Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”    So, let us choose the good portion.  Let us not be troubled by the many things that are not necessary.

One last thing I want to mention.   As we’ve discussed, Paul’s whole life revolved around sharing the gospel.  It wasn’t because it was his job, it was because he believed in the power of Jesus to save lives – and change lives.  And because it was the best news he had ever heard.

Is the gospel the best news you’ve ever heard?
Do you take time to share Jesus with the people in your lives?

Because I know that we share the things we love.
The gadget that changed your life – you share it.
The parenting tip that made the biggest difference in your life – you share it.
The thing that saved your marriage – you share it.

So , if Jesus truly changed your life, or is changing it on a daily basis, then you should share it!
Ask God to give you a burden for his children that are lost.  Then, start praying for the friends and family in your life that do not know Jesus.  He may use others to actually share the gospel with some of them, so pray that God will put people in their lives that will.  And then look for ways to share what Jesus has done in your life recently with those who don’t know him.  God’s probably not calling you to go door-to-door, but he has given you a circle of influence.  So, learn to become disciplined in sharing Jesus with others.  Because we should share the things we love.

We should share Jesus.

1 Peter 3:15 (ESV)
But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect

Posted in Encouragement    Tagged with self-discipline, sharing the gospel


Jana Stohler - April 16th, 2012 at 12:44 PM
Jamie, I have been studying through 1 and 2 Peter. I came across a verse the other day that goes along with what you have been saying here. In 1 Peter 1:5-7 there is a progression there that happens. "Now for his very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." (NASB) This progression builds upon itself and I have been digging into this but the one I keep stumbling over is self-control and what Biblical self-control really is. I loved your blog here because all of this is easy to think about in relation to the world. Paul and Peter are not talking about this type of application for this progression and building. It is building upon the Biblical character. I love your reminder that we are not live spiritually disciplined lives and not the task oriented lives we so often think of. When I went back and re-read these verses after being reminded about living in a spiritual discipline instead of a worldly discipline, it reminded me of so much. Thank you for posting this.
Charlotte - April 16th, 2012 at 11:17 PM
I often times find Pinterest to be overwhelming for there are so many things i want to do that i don't have time or money to do and that's how i often feel about my walk with the Lord. There are so many things i feel i should be doing for HIm and can't seem to do them all. Maybe that is the devil trying to make me feel unworthy but it is often how i feel. I know one of my spiritual gifts is mercy and there are so many needy people that i can see everywhere. I know i just need to keep my focus on what i feel He wants me to do and not what i or even others think i should do.
Carolyn - April 17th, 2012 at 10:22 AM
Jamie, I love your reflection on 'perfect lives' We all try or want to be perfect in all the external ways. "I am always sayIng, "I try so hard to be perfect." It might be a birthday party I am planning or grocery shopping, or loving my husband, children or family.

Grocery shopping for example. I cut out the coupons, I have a list with all the aisles numbered, I mark carefully all the groceries I need to buy. Off to the grocery store I go and as I get out of the car, I realize I forgot my coupons and/or list. The other day I forgot my purse and had to go back and get it. "No matter how hard I try to be perfect, I am faced with the fact....I am not perfect...".God is not through with me yet."

It's good to be reminded "But love requires effort – not emotion. And so does our love for God! Loving God means learning to be disciplined in our spiritual lives. If we only show God that we love him when we feel like it, then we’re going to find ourselves not reading the Bible, not going to church and not doing a lot of things! Because human nature is fickle!"

A part of our discipline is also a caution in the few words at the end of 1:Peter 3:15. "yet do it with gentleness and respect." The discipline God wants from us is to 'walk the walk' in our lives, talk the talk as we move through our life. God wants us to let the Holy Spirit do the wooing and conviction of that person soul. Being passionate about witnessing doesn't mean beating people over the head, hailing about I'm right and your wrong.

As you said in your blog, ...start praying for the friends and family in your life that do not know Jesus. He may use others to actually share the gospel with some of them, so pray that God will put people in their lives that will. Live the testimony...speak God's message and leave the result to him.

I was remembering a young man in my Grandson class in High School. He was sharing some of his problems with Wes. Wes suggested maybe he needed to accept Jesus and led him in the sinner prayer. The young man started going to church and youth program with Wes. The class had a 'secret pal' drawing the other day. Wes got his name. He purchased a bible for the young man. Isn't it wonderful how God opens up the door if we are aware of the opportunities and respond with action.
Donna McNery - May 3rd, 2012 at 8:56 PM
Jamie, Thank you for sharing this Truth with our ladies in the BRAVE Bible study and on your wonderful blog! No matter what age we are, women struggle with the desire to look perfect and to do all of our tasks perfectly. What you share about spiritual discipline is where our focus should be, and then we can be made perfect in His Power when we have His perspective on discipline. Keep on blogging, teaching, and sharing the Gospel. I and many others will continue to benefit from your discipline in sharing what God is teaching you!
laura - May 14th, 2012 at 10:10 AM
hahaha! wow that was awesome! I have a pinterest perfect life in my HEAD...but, in is an I love Lucy episode every day! Great job girl!
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