Sunday, February 28, 2010

Good Words...

Today was a great day... mainly because it started out with a great message both in Worship Service and Sunday School. I want to share as much of it with you as I can here, and my thoughts on how it relates to my life. There are 3 particular things I want to share with you {sounds a bit like a sermon doesn't it! :) }

1. The following song, to me, explains one of the blessings of being a part of the body of Christ. To be in His sanctuary surrounded by your brothers and sisters in Christ that care, support, and encourage, even if they don't necessarily know you. I have been in church all of my life, and I've gone from growing up in a church where there is 150 in church on a Sunday morning to 1500 on a Sunday morning... and both places, big and small... God works in a big way if the body is broken and open to His work and movement.

God Is Here by: Karen Clark-Sheard

There is a sweet anointing in the sanctuary
There is a stillness in the atmosphere
O come lay down the burdens you have carried
For in the sanctuary God is here.
He is here, God is here
To break the yoke and lift the heavy burden
He is here, God is here
To heal the hopeless "Heart" and bless the broken.
O come lay down the burdens you have carried
For in the sanctuary God is here
Speak Lord, Speak Lord
Speak Lord, Speak Lord
During church this morning the part of this song that hit me hard was O come lay down the burdens you have carried... We all have these burdens, and they are different for everyone. Some people choose to carry their burdens and NOT ask for help even though people are available for support. Some people choose to carry their burdens publicly for all to see and use them as a conversation piece to call attention to themselves. And sadly, some people keep burdens to themselves so much so that they become overwhelmed and allow that yoke to break them down. If you are one of those people who keeps your burden to yourself, please please please (!!!!!!!!!!) don't let it get the best of you... ask for help, ask for prayer, ask for support. I truly believe that one of Satan's biggest weapons is Pride... so please don't be too proud to ask for help... ever... because God has placed people in your life for a reason... to be a support... to help you carry your burdens to the Sanctuary.
2. Dr. Ergun Caner spoke at church today from Ezra chapter 3. (Check him out and listen to his story: He said a lot of great things throughout his sermon about making noise for the Lord, tithing what you love God with not what you "owe", and finally the part that impacted me the most... our scars.
Dr. Caner used an example of comparing his kids with himself. Helmets vs. no helmets, knee/elbow pads vs. skinned knees, and padded playgrounds vs. asphalt. He said, "I am who I am because of my scars." This statement is so true. We make mistakes in life, big and small. I'm personally the type of person that when I screw something up... I do it real good. For example: I've never really had a little fender bender, nope... instead I flipped a car over. I will never forget walking through the woods with Daddy when I was little. He taught me a lot about God through nature... and one time in particular I remember him pointing out a tree, which was twisted and bent and unlike the others around it (probably a result of a tornado during its early years). He told me that tree had a "rough childhood," but went on to explain that it was that way because God allowed it to be. So... no matter how many scars we have, we are that way because God allowed us to be. And if we don't learn from those scars... they are a waste...
I'm not a parent (though I hope I will be some day), but one of the things Dr. Caner talked about in regard to these scars can physically relate to kids but can metaphorically relate to us all. By wearing the helmet, elbow pads, knee pads, and shin guards a child is less likely to get those scars, which means he less likely to learn certain lessons. Now relate that to yourself as an individual... By wearing the helmet, pads, and guards... whatever those may be in your life, not taking chances, not being open to God's plan, giving the bare minimum in life or in faith, whatever it is... that protection that you are putting on yourself is preventing the scars that you can learn from. So you have to make a decision... face your life guarded and not be open to the possibilities of God... or standing on the edge of the cliff waiting to see what happens. Both are a little scary... but I'm challenging myself to walk toward the cliff and be ready to see what's over the edge.
3. So, if you are scared of the cliff, and I think we all can be at times... what do you do? Another good word came from Sunday School today from Ben Pilgreen who is moving with his family in May to San Francisco to start a church. (Check out for info on their mission) Two major points to share from Sunday school, the first of which relates to the cliff... and the fear of it:
Now, I'm not saying that if fear didn't exist I would go and hop into a pit of snakes... cause though fear may not be there... that's just not a smart decision. But think about how this statement practically relates to your life. What would I do if fear didn't exist? Well, I would apply for any job in Higher Education that interested me... no matter what corner of the earth it was on. What's my fear? That tragedy will strike my family again and that I'll be too far away to be home when needed. That's pure honesty coming from me right there... that's my fear right now... that God will take another family member Home and I won't be available to my family when the time comes. If it wasn't for that fear, that concern... I wouldn't be limiting myself geographically when searching for jobs. I'm praying about that a lot right now... that God will give me peace about where to go and what to do... and for peace for my family too... my mom at least, because I know that if I moved further away it would affect her most of all. This is my burden, so please pray with me about this.
Finally, I want to leave you with the challenge that Ben left for our class:
Your dreams should be big enough so that if God does not have to act, they will not come true.
Think on that... you know what your dreams are... but are they big enough??
Please join me in prayer for all of our missionaries in the world, and more specifically for the Pilgreen family and their team who are packing up their lives and walking over the cliff... ready to see what God has in store for them in San Francisco, CA.
Love you all,

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