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Tindell Baldwin »

I am Not a Dancing Monkey

hes just not that into youPINIMAGE1 Corinthians 1:26

The Message (MSG)

26-31 Take a good look, friends, at who you were when you got called into this life. I don’t see many of “the brightest and the best” among you, not many influential, not many from high-society families. Isn’t it obvious that God deliberately chose men and women that the culture overlooks and exploits and abuses, chose these “nobodies” to expose the hollow pretensions of the “somebodies”? That makes it quite clear that none of you can get by with blowing your own horn before God. Everything that we have—right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start—comes from God by way of Jesus Christ. That’s why we have the saying, “If you’re going to blow a horn, blow a trumpet for God.”

We are all called to something, for me I was called when the wounds were still very real from my past. I remember thinking, God you have to be crazy I haven’t even been sober very long. I was 20. I remember though, I remember his voice saying “I can use this for my glory”. When I was 20 it was easy I knew how much I needed God but then I started thinking I had it together, I could play the part, I knew enough scripture, knew how to act, and it started becoming really fake. Looking back I see that I really thought God wanted me to perform, like a dancing monkey he had just hired and him and I were doing ok if I could keep up with the music. For a while I danced and I smiled and he was my master, not my father.

Then life got really hard, personal tragedy threatened to rip apart my perfect world and I couldn’t perform. I was all danced out and when I sat down and cried out to God I realized he was never the one asking me to dance. He was asking me to draw near, learn, come and sit. He wanted it to be personal. So I got angry, asked the tough questions and we started forming a relationship like we had when he first redeemed me. He started calling me, asking me, telling me, it was time. So I wrote and I answered and he was faithful and here I am.

I am back in the place where I want to perform, I want to say the right things and act the right way instead of being real.  I start wanting to lead out of ability instead of brokenness and when I lead with my ability I am performing. See I have nothing, I am nothing, I am a broken down human who needs a perfect God to save me every day and when I start to believe differently I am lying to myself and God. The only ability I have comes from Christ and the only success I have had in life is from him.

I think when we start to forget this, when we start to forget how much we truly need saving we are in dangerous territory. No matter where you are coming from the story for you and I is the same, we both needed the cross. God doesn’t use a sin scale to define our lives he looks at our broken world and says “you need me” and no one is exempt from that “you.” I don’t care how many prayer groups you have led, how many hours you have spent volunteering, or how many Christian books you have read you still need him every day because knowledge doesn’t change condition. My mom has been sick for a long time and she knows a lot about health and medicine and doctors but she is still sick, because knowledge doesn’t change a condition.

Our condition is the same every day until we head to heaven, I am a sinner and I need a savior and the best thing I can do every day is wake up and remember that because that changes everything. I no longer think I can be the perfect mom, I need Gods help. I can’t be the wife I’m called to be, I need Gods help and I can’t write words about him, I need to know him.

So let’s all stop dancing ourselves to exhaustion because I think if we were really real we are doing it more for each other than him anyway.


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  • Jan Fowler - Tindell, it was so nice meeting you on Sunday. I love reading your blog and I know God has “BIG” plans for your life! I know he will use your journey and authenticity for His glory.
    Keep sharing!
    Jan FowlerReplyCancel

    • Tindell Baldwin - Thank you jan it was so wonderful to meet you as well! Thank you encouraging me!!!ReplyCancel

  • Heather - I received a complimentary copy of your book for review purposes and really enjoyed it. I thought you might be encouraged to read my 13 year old’s review as well. Our “Mother-Daughter Review” is posted here:

  • Renee Parris - I just discovered your blog and am very excited about your new book. I love your heart. Your message resonates with so many of the teen girls that I mentor. I have shared your facebook page in hopes of leading other teens to your page and blog. Blessings to you for following your heart and listening to the still small voice over the other loud voices around you.ReplyCancel

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