Shabby

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

faithful


In my small group, we are going through an overview of the Bible.  It has been quite eye opening to say the least.  I really feel like we are all learning something new.  I've often been intimidated by the Bible...I've felt like I wasn't smart enough to understand it...I didn't always know why it was important to know things like Noah and the Ark etc...and I didn't understand the words!  (Partially because I grew up reading the King James Version).  I've learned about it all my life and can recite verses here and there.  But, its never come alive to me in this way before.  I thirst for it...and it is so satisfying when I get to drink it up.  

Okay, so sorry for the Christianese metaphors...what I really want to say is that God is faithful.  Do you know this?  Do you feel that he is faithful?  Maybe not...but he still is.  Why?  How do I know?  Because it is true of his character and he demonstrates it time and time again in his word.  

As we're walking through scripture, I continue to ask myself, why did God want this in the Bible?  What does he want me to know and understand?  There's a man named Abraham (Genesis 12-25) who God asks to do some pretty hard things.  He also tells him that he will bless him more than he can ever imagine.  The guy is faithful...constantly obeying and praising God until he gets scared and tries to help God fulfill his plan.  He takes a second wife, he lies, he worries, he doubts that God is who he says he is, he lacks faith constantly, he laughs at God, and the list goes on.  Does this sound like you?  Someone you know?  God continues to remind Abraham that he WILL bless him greatly, and while he experiences consequences for his choices...God remains faithful.  He takes what may have been meant for evil and uses it for his glory.  He blesses the child born to the "other woman", he redeems the lies and walks him through the times of worry and doubt.  He even gives Abraham the opportunity to petition God not to destroy a city where his family lived.  

God continually reminds Abraham of who he is, and renews his faithfulness and covenant despite his decision-making.  He does this because he ultimately had a heart that desired to please God.  That's it...he was just trying!  He acknowledges when he screws up, takes responsibility for his choices and then tries again...

This should be a comfort to you...because it means that you too can experience God in the same way.  I'm pretty sure this is why God wanted these stories in scripture...so that we could see people like us doing amazing things through the power of God.  

God's word is alive...it is applicable for all time.  God doesn't expect perfection-in fact, he knows that we will screw up perhaps in a really big way-but his promises are true and he will redeem the screw up...all of them.  He just wants your heart.   He just wants you to try.  He's there to help and guide you. He will ask you to give up everything and suffering will most definitely come because we live in a messed up world!...but he is FAITHFUL!  Always...Do you see it?  Or are you giving up on God because he's not doing what you think he should?  Perhaps a change of perspective is what we need...to view our situation with the lens of who God is.  

How has God been faithful to you this year?

Until the next time :-), C

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Joy in the Journey


Today I am feeling an excitement like I’ve not felt in a long time.  To be quite honest, things are a bit bleak…the bank account is drained, friends are hurting, and there is a lot of work to do…but I am excited.  God has chosen us to sell out…to give it all up.  We are slashing bills, giving things away, and learning to live with much much less.  We are taking risks…jumping off of metaphorical bridges…and I’m excited!  There truly is joy in the journey.  

We want to walk with you throughout life.  If you need someone to talk to…Dan and I would love to meet with you as couples or as individuals.  Not because we’re perfect…because we’ve tasted God’s grace…his mercy…and we love walking with those that want to go deeper.  

We’d also love to teach you more about Jesus.  Check out our website to join one of our 5 small groups or join us on a Sunday evening.  

Come and see...

until the next time :-), C

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Let's talk about church baby...


Let's talk about church.  THE church...not A church.  There's a difference...did you know?  This past year, Dan and I have been in a lot of churches, staff meetings, interviews, and just meeting a lot of ministry leaders.  I have been impressed by the presence of a kingdom mindset.  The Kingdom of God...all of those who have put their faith in Jesus Christ and surrendered control of their lives to Him.  We may express ourselves in different venues...some wear suits, some wear cut offs.  Some have sleeve tattoos...some like solitude, some prefer hymns on an organ, some like the loud crazy dance around music.  Some like grape juice, and some like WINE.  Some hide underground and drink in the words of the Bible like their lives depend on it...some are tortured and imprisoned for their faith.  Some fight over the color of the carpet...(hopefully they repent).  All in all, we are all a part of the Kingdom of God.  There can never be too many venues.  Shoot...let's have a venue in every house right?

I've learned so much.  My comfort zone has been a small speck in the rearview mirror of my life.  And, it is good!  We're planting a church.  A different kind of expression of the Kingdom of God.  We believe in real life church...meeting people's needs...keeping it simple.  It's not THE right way...it's a specific expression of the Kingdom of God.  Sometimes there are kids running around like crazy...sometimes two of us are crying in a coffeehouse together.  Sometimes there are hard conversations...sometimes there just isn't enough money.  God has called us to a life of unknown...but it is real...it is fresh...it is good.  It is an adventure.  Our church has already begun...come pray with us.  Come and get to know Jesus.  Come and learn to build relationships for God's glory.

Until the next time :-), C