Monday, April 29, 2013

Full Circle

I was witness
to something
amazingly beautiful
yesterday...

I am not even sure
I can put it into words,
but I am going to try




Part of my history belongs to a church body in Tucson, AZ.
It is where I was first accepted for who I am
the place I met Jesus
the place where I first understood
what living in community looks and feels like
I met my husband there
I met some life long friends there
I met my "in time" sister's husband there
my kids were rocked in rocking chairs there

We were there in what I would consider a high time

But...
things change
people move away, 
people die
vision gets skewed
hearts break
and before you know it
this thriving,
God loving church
is holding on by a thread

How can that be?
It is a lot of big and little things

This process has also given me a glimpse of what a remnant looks like

For although much has happened to this body,
a remnant remained
steadfast
believing that God had not abandoned them
sticking together
continuing to care and love on one another
serving the body and the community around them

Years go by...
faith remains

And then yesterday...
How can I begin?

We weren't even going to go
For we are in the middle of moving across the country
But we felt compelled to be witness to something

It was like a grand reunion, for others like us who had moved on came too.
Hugs, Tears, catching up on the years gone by

And in the midst of it all
there they were
the remnant...
standing strong and tall in their faith

All so beautiful
too beautiful to describe

This remnant,
who refused to give up or give in
who knew that God still had things He wanted them to do

took a leap of faith
they invited a new thing to happen
with an old friend

For you see,
the man they chose to shepherd them yesterday
started his spiritual journey among them many years ago
He met Jesus among this remnant
He began to learn what community means

And then,
He went out into the world to serve the Lord

And now,
He has come home to where it all began for him
to shepherd a people that he never stopped loving

Full Circle
as only a creative Savior could have arranged

What else can I say?









Thursday, April 25, 2013

Change

To become altered or modified

I really don't know anyone that likes change...
even change for the good
even when the altered is better than the original
even when the modified makes more sense

Change is hard  

I personally find that living with what I have
although not perfect
even when it is hurts
even when it keeps me awake at night...

It is what I know
familiar
predictable

What is wrong with that, I say!
Comfy
Cozy
Knowing what is today will be the same tomorrow

How can God be
Sovereign, 
Unchanging
and yet be the God that
moves mountains   
changes hearts
creates a new thing?

He is and He does

Since it is true, I must know and embrace the fact that
Change is one of the ways that
He shows me what He has for me to do
He shows me that He will not leave me the way I am
He shows me that the current circumstance is not permanent

I trust My Lord
He has never abandoned me
even when I tried to run from Him and His ways
He has never given up on me
even when I am in rebellion and do what I know makes Him sad
He patiently waits for me to jump on board with what He has for me

My Abba is good that way

This worlds concept of change is so different than His

May I stay focused on God's way and perspective
and become blind to the noise of the world.
 

2 Corinthians 3:18

New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
Our faces are not covered with a veil. We all display the Lord’s glory.
We are being changed to become more like Him
so that we have more and more glory.
And the glory comes from the Lord, who is the Holy Spirit.
 

Monday, April 1, 2013

What are you wearing!?

This time of year in Arizona
the modesty crisis begins at many churches
Mine included
You see, it is warm here
and when it gets warm,
girls of all ages start wearing less and showing more.

I get it
It is hot
and that little top is soooooooo cute!

The thing is,
church is not the place
to wear a tube top,
or short shorts,
or mini skirts,
or show cleavage
or bare midsections,
or bare backs.
church is not the place
to wear anything
that brings more attention to the person
than it does to why we are at church.

I know, I am way up on my soap box...

But really girls

Why do you go to church?

I go to church to worship,
not to be distracted
by someone practically falling out of their shirt
Or someone who has to constantly pull their shirt up
or down in order not to show parts of their body.  
Or someone who can't bend over or
sit down without exposing their upper thigh region.

Okay, I know, I am getting up in some peoples grill.

Do people say that anymore?

There are those that say,
well....I think I look fine
and I want to look cute
and that is all that they are selling in the stores.....
blah blah blah...

If I say it is distracting,
they say that is not their problem
If I say that we sisters should be willing to protect our brothers in Christ,
they say that is not their responsibility

I understand it is hard sometimes to discern what to wear,
but at the end of the day it is less about that and all about God.

We are there to worship,
to learn about God and His Son.

We are not there to put on a fashion show or attract a mate.

God wants our whole heart.
God wants our motives. 
He wants our focus to be on Him.

Since that is the case,
He must want that for all His children,
so we girls need to do our part
by not getting in the way of someone else 
who is trying to focus on God
 and participate in worshiping Him when they are at church.

I know this means we have to be mindful when we dress for church...
so take another 5 minutes and think of your brothers and sisters in Christ
before you walk out the door.

1 Timothy 2:9-10

The Voice (VOICE)
9 Women, the same goes for you:
dress properly, modestly, and appropriately.
Don’t get carried away in grooming your hair
or seek beauty in glittering gold, pearls, or expensive clothes.
10 Instead, as is fitting,
let good works decorate your true beauty
and show that you are a woman who claims reverence for God.

Amen!





For the last 4 months I have been meeting with the most amazing group of women.
They all come from different backgrounds and are in different seasons of their lives.
We have come together to ponder and discuss who we are as women
who are believers in Jesus Christ and who are involved in our local church.   
It has been great fun every time we have gotten together.
We have talked about anything and everything pertaining to women and "the church".
There is no way that I could possibly write down everything here.
But if you are in town, you can get a glimpse of us chatting it up
this Wednesday at Gilbert Redemption Church.