Monday, November 19, 2007

Honestly Here

"O Lord, be gracious to us; we wait for you. Be our arm every morning, our salvation in the time of trouble. At the tumultuous noise peoples flee; when you lift yourself up, nations are scattered, and your spoil is gathered as the caterpillar gathers;as locusts leap, it is leapt upon. The Lord is exalted, for he dwells on high;he will fill Zion with justice and righteousness, and he will be the stability of your times,abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge;the fear of the Lord is Zion's treasure." ~ Isaiah 33:2-6

He is worthy of all honor, glory and praise. Nothing else. No relationship, no life course, nothing. Only Him. And it is by His mercy that I finally understand that in a way that rings true in my spirit. I've spent so many years entrenched in this cyclical obsession with all that is not Him, but now...and joyfully I sing this...I am free. To be free in Him is to be free from self. Free from the manipulation of sin. Free from our own understanding of "who we are". Once we receive His freedom...and we have been called His children...we have truth.

Recently, I've had many conversations with people about separating what is true from what we feel. Days come when I don't feel free from sin, I don't feel alive in Christ, but does that mean this impacts the truth of the matter? Of course not! And such FREEDOM reigns in that lack of power! My heart rejoices in this: on the days when I feel unattractive, unwanted and unloved...and they can come every now and then...I know what is truth. I am beautifully and wonderfully made by YHWH, Himself, I have been and am being pursued by the Lover of my soul, and the ultimate expression of love- namely, the cross-was done so that we might be with Him. See? Truth/feeling distinction is so crucial.

Another truth/feeling- we are a part of the Body of Christ-the mission of which is to go and make disciples. Whether it be in the local scene or the global one. This is truth. Don't believe me? What does the Great Commission say? So...then we have this Church. Members of which "do not feel called into the mission field." Really? My brothers and sisters...we ARE called to reach and touch those around us. A life in Christ consists of so much more than a Sunday check-writing, a good sermon, and a good luncheon following. So, I am a part of two churches-one from my original state and one here-both of which have an INCREDIBLE amount of resources in PEOPLE. Not in money-though that is present as well, but in people. The one back home has over 200 people each Sunday and the one here maxes at about 800 a Sunday. A LOT of people. But you have an outreach...in both cases...and less than 20 show up. Where's the disconnect?

Christ has called us to action. Are you ready? Or are you still trying to figure out if you're called to move? If so, let me help you...

Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. ~ James 1:27

If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. ~ John 12:26

For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them.~1 Corinthians 9:19

Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.~ Philippians 2:4-7

Countless other verses talk about what we should do...so, I ask again. Are you ready?

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