[noteworthy] “Trademark”

In honor of Relient K’s newest album Collapsible Lung, I’ve been rocking some classic Relient K tracks. One of my favorites is “Trademark” from the album Two Lefts Don’t Make a Right…but Three Do. It’s one of those songs where every time I hear it…it’s all I can think about for a while. One of the lyrics that plays on repeat in my head is, “It seems if my ties with You get severed I can’t seem to hold a thing together/I just fall apart, ’cause that’s my trademark.”

I have a really bad habit of doing this yo-yo thing with Jesus. That sounds like some kind of fun game, but really it’s a miserable cycle with lots of me disappointing myself. I get comfortable and complacent with where my relationship with Him is, then it’s like I forget that faith is a work in progress. It’s like any other relationship – it takes nurturing and time…time spent together…time in confidence. When I get in the place of realizing that I’m slipping away…I always think, “There you go again, Caitlyn. Classic you.” It’s my trademark move.

“It’s my, my trademark move/To realize I should improve
And sometime soon after that You’ll see me come crawlin’ back.”

Sing it, Relient K. Sing. It.

I always catch myself in a moment where I don’t feel like myself. I realize I can be better…that I AM better and go crawling back. I have this image of God standing there with His arms out and this look on His face. The look isn’t disappointment or annoyance…He’s not angry with me. It’s more like a “we’ve been here before” look. I don’t even know how to describe it.

So, what is it?

“I’ll kill the thing that turns me away/Amputate the arm that will disobey/Withdraw from everything that’s hurting me/Until You finish Your work in me”

There comes a point in everyone’s faith walk where they can identify what it is that pulls them away from God. It’s different for everyone. Sometimes it’s temptations and addictions. Other times, we find idols and other ways of trying to replace God in our lives. We realize that there’s nothing big enough to outweigh the place God has in our hearts and lives and we run back home. There’s this stuff that’s weighing us down and pulling us away from Him.

So, we cut it out. When I was a youth intern, we talked about cutting out the bad influences (music, movies, TV shows, etc.) Sometimes these things are hard to quit cold turkey. Been there, my friends. Sometimes we tell ourselves that we can handle it because it’s just that entertaining. This is something I cycle with, too. If I’m listening to music and watching movies or TV shows with bad influences all at the same point in my life it can be overwhelming and I have to cut a few things out. Again, that’s something that’s different for everyone. I have friends who won’t watch anything that’s not honoring God and I have other friends who don’t even understand the concept of honoring God with what you watch. I’m not going to tell people that God doesn’t want them listening to bad music. I don’t know what God wants. I think it’s what we do after we listen to it or watch it that matters…the effect it has on our minds.

So, that’s my trademark move. Slip away, come back, repeat. Sure would be easier if I could cut out the slipping away part, huh?

Work in progress. No one’s perfect.

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