Thursday, April 4, 2013

Rando Thoughts

God whispers because if He spoke any louder, He'd kill us. 

Shout it
Go on and scream it from the mountains
Go on and tell it to the masses
That He is God

We talk really nicely. We wrap everything up in a nice, neat package. Do we actually feel that way? I think we're full of it. 

Hints only grow the darkness.  Generalities never exposed the darkness to the light. 

When are we going to choose differently?

When am I going to choose differently?

When am I going to choose excellence?

Monday, March 4, 2013


A while back, a friend of mine gave me an ebonics bible. Yes, lowercase b on bible. My favorite verse in it comes out of James...

Normal translation:

Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.

Word on the Street bible:

Guys, are you taking notes? Get this down: How many ears you got? Two. How many mouths? One. Two to one's about the right ratio. Listen twice as much as you talk. And put an extension on that short fuse of yours, 'cos losing your cool doesn't help you live right as God wants.

When it is put in terms like that...I am convicted about how much I love to open my big, fat mouth and talk. Sometimes, I can be a really bad listener. Sometimes I can have a short fuse. I do my best to hide those facts in hopes of being perceived as somebody who is a good listener and really patient...but most don't know what's going on inside my head.

While you're sharing, I can be reminiscing over a past memory, figuring out what I'm going to eat for lunch, and singing a song in my head all at the same time.  While you vent to me about the same thing for the 3rd time because you need to sort out what's going on and need the verbal process time, my eyes are rolling inside my head.

I promise that's not me all the time...

but it happens a lot more frequently than I would ever like to admit.

I want to be a good listener. I want to be patient. I want to be the person Christ has called me to be. It is a lifelong challenge I am going to fail at constantly but am willing to pursue diligently.

Sunday, February 24, 2013


While I was living in Colorado Springs, I was told this story about the Moravian movement:

There were two young men from Hernhut, Germany who found out there was a population of about 2000-3000 slaves who never heard the Gospel preached.  It wasn't allowed on the Caribbean island of St. Thomas where they resided. Distraught by the news and wanting to be obedient, they sold themselves into slavery for the price of a one-way ticket to St. Thomas.

Their friends and family came to see them off knowing full well they would never see each other again.  As they set off, one of the young men yelled to them, "May the lamb that was slain receive the reward for his suffering."


Am I willing to sacrifice myself for the sake of what Christ did for me? Do I feel the sense of urgency to reach out to those who don't know His story?

Scale it back a little bit:

Do I even have an inkling of the sacrifice Christ went through to make a way for me?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

For Today

The charismatic gifts of the Spirit are for today. I'll just boldly put that out there.

Where did this come from?  It came from one measly sentence in a short chapter on the New Testament in this really dry book I'm reading for class. it! It says this: "Paul did not instruct the Corinthians to stop speaking in tongues; he simply asked that they recognize the proper place of tongues in worship..."

It reminded me of a class I had while I was living in Colorado Springs...a class designated to debate on the issues that divide the Church. The issue we just skipped over because we were all "pretty much on the same page" was the debate on whether or not all tongues shall cease or the charismatic gifts were meant for today.

I think 1 Corinthians 14:15-17 is a good example to follow:

15 Well then, what shall I do? I will pray in the spirit, and I will also pray in words I understand. I will sing in the spirit, and I will also sing in words I understand.
16 For if you praise God only in the spirit, how can those who don't understand you praise God along with You? How can they join you in giving thanks when they don't understand what you are saying?
17 You will be giving thanks very well, but it won't strengthen the people who hear you.

Charismatic gifts are not a bad thing at all...if in context of what is most edifying to the Body.  When we engage in worship God drenches us in His love, and all He asks in return is for us to respond.  That could be in our natural tongue or the intimate, supernatural tongue.  

Now, if this is not a gift you posses, does that make you any less spiritual?  Heck no!  That was something I struggled with for a long time.  Interning at a very charismatic church where many other interns were very vocal with their prayer languages made me feel small at times.  It's not that they frowned upon me for not "speaking their language" but in some ways felt like they elevated themselves.  

Spiritual gifts are only effective with Christ in the center of it.  Without Him, without love, we are the resounding gongs Paul talks about in 1 Corinthians 13:1

1 If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn't love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Initiation

God is an initiator.

Let me rephrase:

God is the initiator.

He is the first to reach His hand out.  He extends the invitation. He gently calls us by name to walk in the most intimate of relationships with Him. He'll meet us halfway...sometimes more if He deems it necessary. He'll never shout at us, never raise a fist in anger, never leave us, never walk away.

And what to we have to do?


That's all it takes. That is worship to our Lord.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

A joint venture...

So Laramie and I are tackling this one together this week.  Since there is no specific topic to blog about, we're just going to rant about super spiritual things we dislike:

I don't like it when somebody I just met jumps into the spiritual deep end within the first five minutes.

"Hey, my name is what is God doing in your life right now?"

No thank you.  I need a little segue. How old are you?  Do you have any brothers or sisters? Where did you grow up?  Those kinds of questions are necessary for creating a baseline for future conversations.  When there is no established relationship, I can't just swan dive into the clear pool of spirituality like they can. No, I don't want to tell you my thoughts on the second coming of Christ. No, I'm not going to start talking about what a Proverbs 31 woman looks like in today's society.  I just want to eat my half-priced appetizers in peace.

Okay, so, just in case anyone reading this doesn't know me...I'm pretty private. I like to keep most things to myself other than my love for Christ and my never-to-be-treated addiction to coffee. One of the things that ceases to catch me off guard is when someone I've just met genuinely asks me how I'm doing...

"How are you really doing?..." "..................................................."

It's like that jelly fish scene in Nemo... I just stare. Then they stare. Then I start to wish I was in the doctor's office counting the holes in the ceiling. But before I send out my SOS, I'm usually able to grab some sort of interesting piece of info to share...that isn't uncomfortably revealing and is hug-worthy.

One thing that absolutely drive me nuts is when somebody is trying to tell me their amazing spiritual revelations...but says nothing.

"God has just been showing me all of these things in my life that are getting in the way.  I have been arguing with Him for so long, but He finally showed me how prideful I've been and took away those parts of my heart.  It's been a painful process, but I'm finally getting to see His glory work in my life and amazing things are starting to happen."

Blech! That tells me nothing!  If you didn't want to say anything, then just don't say anything.  Spiritualizing a conversation for the sake of spiritualizing the conversation is not productive.  What do you want me to do, just nod my head in agreement like I know what you're saying?  Make those weird sounds people make when somebody goes off on a wild verbal tangent? "Mmm..., I totally understand....mmmm..."

Alright. If I could summarize my childhood, these would be the three words that really pull it all together: Homeschooled, Pastor's kid. And really, this doesn't bite me in the butt as much as it did, but I always loved the looks I would get when these two things were revealed in conversation. People either think I was raised by wolves or I came out of the womb quoting scripture and I have a pet giraffe. No, I don't know how to crochet, I don't sew my own clothes, I do know who Obama is, and I happen to like Maroon 5. I secretly love it, but I publicly get offended just to normalize the situation. I loved my life growing up, but it's so hilarious when it's as if I grew up without civilization. Not true, I just read more books than the public school system :)

And as our closing statement: Predestination.

Chew on that.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Lecture, lecture, lecture....

Growing up, my mom had the biggest heart for international ministry.  From first grade on, we had multiple foreign exchange students floating in and out of our house.  Some of them we actually hosted, some would live with us for the school year, some we took to go see the Amish, others we would just fill their hungry stomachs. No matter the student's background or religion, my mom always brought the Gospel to her surrogate children.  Her hospitality brought them in, and her wisdom keeps them asking questions.

That's not me.

I love my mom and support her ministry, but my heart does not lie within international ministry.

During lecture series at school, we had a few missions-oriented individuals come in and tell us about what God has been doing in their ministry. Through avenues of music and creative arts, these guys are reaching and preaching to a demographic that is largely unreached or indifferent. God has been using these guys in big ways through their evangelistic ministry and were encouraging all of us as students to consider serving overseas.

That's not me.

I have an appreciation for their ministry, but my heart does not lie within overseas ministry.

I see such an intense need for keeping people in the Church than getting them there first.  I want to be in community with the ones who've walked in saying "Now what?" If we can't answer that, then why are we in the Church in the first place?