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Showing posts from July, 2009

Jesus looks good on you!

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A woman approached me yesterday and asked if she could tell me something. So vague, I hesitantly said, "yes," (you just never know...) But what she wanted to share with me was that I seem different. She wanted remarked that I had changed, in some way that she couldn't quite articulate, but that I was calmer, more content, more at peace, more joyful and she thought I should know that others are seeing it.


I awkwardly thanked her for the compliment, not sure what to say, but as I walked away the words of Peter came to me...


Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. 1Peter 3:15


There are many things in my life who have contributed to creating the woman I am today, but none like God who used all things for my good.

It made me think of my baptism. Under the water I was so conscious of the choice I was committing myself to and then coming up from the water, drenched with Christ, I began a new life.

I prayed for my…

Monday QB

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Yesterday's text was from Isaiah 6:1-8.

Our study continues in Embracing the Mysterious God with the holiness of God.

We get pretty comfortable with the idea that God listens to us, participates with us, hangs out with us. As Kirk pointed out in his message, this is only one side of God. The other side is characterized by God's transcendence, His infinity, His indescribable hugeness, His beyond-our-understanding. Makes me think about Jesus being fully God and fully human. Sometimes I see people who are definitely more at ease with the divinity or humanity but they struggle to put it together. Or, the struggle between the physical (body) and spiritual (soul). We seem to be, not just a stiff necked people, but also pretty black and white in our thinking.

To me, there are 3 parts here. There is the topic of God's holiness, the state of out hearts, and then the response of our hearts.

The passage started with a king who thought he was equal to God, but Isaiah sees God as king in…

Honestly!

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Years ago there was this guy in the recovery meetings that would share and his trademark thing was, "The troof will setcha fwee." Of course, he was saying was, "The truth will set you free." It is still a favorite around my house (just the way it is written). Now sure, this guy may not have had all his teeth or perhaps just poor pronunciation, but today my husband and I will say it to each other and giggle if we are caught in a half truth. Half truth? Isn't that the same as a half lie?
Sadly, I must admit I didn't know it was a quote from the Bible for many years.
But the Truth has been kicking around in me, bouncing off my behavior at work, the way I relate to my husband, my idea of my plans for my future. One thing that has been revealed is that truth is not the same as right.
I am an eldest child. I have a strong personality. I am pretty intelligent. I have some education. I have been around the block a little. I think I know what is "right," but…

Monday Morning QB

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Yesterday we started a series entitled, Embracing the Mysterious God, by looking at God's triune nature.


It started out a little dry for me. My mind wandered. Was it because it was our week to watch the video feed or because I grew up making the sign of the Cross...In the name of the Father, I touch my forehead, in the name of the Son, my fingertips tap my chest, in the name of the Holy, over to the left shoulder,Spirit, right shoulder, Amen...or because I had already transcribed the bulletin's notes to my personal notebook? It doesn't really matter. I was missing the point anyway.

God's 3 Persons/1 Essence, His triune nature, makes Him a community.

I am not a community, altho there are sometimes enough voices in my head that I begin to wonder.

Can you even picture it: three unique persons with such deep admiration and trust in each other that they submit to each other, are mutually dependent on each other, and honor each other without fear? A community of Love that spilt…

I AM

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It occurred to me during my reading that I am grateful to have a God like I AM.
Since many thousands of years BC, I AM has been. Thousands of years after I AM became man to show His love for us, I AM is. Forever, I AM will be.
Last night I was privileged to witness the baptism of 2 new Christians. Well, actually 6, tho I knew 2. It is always exciting and joyous to me, as they come up from the water, with their humble yet triumphant countenances praising God. Our section of friends cried and cried with each baptism, those we knew and those we didn't, because in each testimony our Lord was given the glory for changed lives, for hope restored, for love replacing fear, because in each testimony our Lord is active and moving today when so many think He is silent.

Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. Luke 15:7 ESV

A-ha moment

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So many times in our lives we are so uncertain about God's interest because we have so much "evidence" of His indifference that it never even occurs to us when God is looking at us and talking to us... -Erwin McManus

Listening to a Mosaic podcast last night and this quote just slapped me upside my head and nearly knocked me outta the computer chair...ok, I exaggerate, but I am serious when I say this was an "a-ha" moment.

I don't hear God NOT because He isn't talking to me, but I don't hear God because I don't really believe He WOULD talk to me.

Is it ok to say that out loud? Why doesn't anyone else say that? I want to desire the "burning bush" moment, but part of me worries what He would say. Then, there are moments that I gather up every ounce of courage I can and take a peek, only to be disappointed.

Of course, as those who know me would agree, I believe that God has spoken to me in those odd, soft proddings of my spirit. Not …

New series-Monday QB

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Altho some of my blogger friends are pastors, I decided to create a series based on the armchair quarterback. My husband is one of those. I, on the other hand, am one of those people that like to chew on the sermon with others-a Monday QB. My husband and I often discuss the sermon on Sunday afternoons while there are times our small groups are still doing it on Tuesday nights. I figure it is my grandfather's fault, him being a preacher and all.

Just in case you were worried, Pastor George, and all the pastors whose sermons I may discuss, no disrespect will be tolerated here. I give y'all props for preaching the Word of God because I know how hard it is to be the face that everyone wants to talk to (or about), complain to (or about), and challenge.

We have been in a series about Journey. This being Pastor George's first sermon series as the new senior pastor makes it a very appropriate topic. We started several weeks ago by discussing the journey from "outward …

Freedom

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Today is the day we celebrate our independence and our freedom. (For my international friends, I know this is an American holiday but play along, ok?) My father served during Vietnam. My grandfather was in WW2. My brother in laws and nephew served. I am grateful for the freedom I enjoy as an American citizen, particularly when I am exposed to the workings of other governments from my international friends.


Today I could write about freedom from lots of perspectives, the political (I am grateful to live in a country where I allowed the right to disagree with my government.), the social (I am grateful to have the freedom to move about in this land so that my family is gathered today.), the economic (I am blessed to be able to have choices in what to wear, what to eat, which car to drive, if I want to go to the doctors for my illness and I am acutely aware this week that so many in our world do NOT have this freedom.), but I chose to just focus on grace (Thank YOU for freeing me!). I am g…

Social Gospel or Gospel?

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I grew up in a Catholic household so social justice issues were commonplace. Catholics aren't so outwardly evangelistic as most Protestants, but they definitely support missions and justice like helping the poor, rights of the unborn. So, some of the hoopla about "social gospel" is just that, hoopla to me. Still, a book I recently reviewed, The Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns, made me question what the distinction was between "social" gospel and Gospel. Is there a difference or does one flow from the other or does one obscure the other?
Truly the tone of the book could lead one to believe that becoming active in social outreaches, feeding the hungry and such, bring about God's kingdom on earth, that our practice of caring for the least of these is the gospel.
I hesitate with that. To me, the Gospel is the amazing good news that God loves us so much that He made a way for us, a people whose hearts are infected with the disease of sin which prevents us fr…