"abide in me as I abide in you..." John 15:4
Today I did lectio with our church staff. This continues to be one of the most fruitful spiritual exercises of my life. I love doing this with you guys! I always appreciate hearing your reactions to God's word.Peace,-t
We had our first Advent meal tonight (should have been last night, but we were at a church party:)) We read Isaiah "Now it shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the Lords house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills and all nations shall flow to it." and then from Jeremiah-"...the days are coming that I will perform that good thing which I have promised..."and even though the kids were being picky about the food, and fighting over who got to light the first candle, I had to laugh and be so grateful that I have kids and food, and candles to light. It is a poignant thing lay our hands on our kids and pray a blessing over each of them. And in the spirit of Advent, I prayed for help to live a life of vigilant waiting…..
I did the Divine Hours when I got up this morning. Then I listened to a Tim Keel sermon - it was really good.
I did some inner reflection today. I heard the song "Amazing Grace" twice today....I tear up every time they do the verse with, "my chains are gone, I've been set free...." I just love that song. My mom always hated Amazing Grace when I was little, as a catholic it was ONLY played at funerals....so I can get why she felt that way. But as an adult now that I get the meaning-or try to get the meaning of the words...it is so awesome. I've been camping out in Luke 2...I need to keep feeling the story and making it real so that this season is for the right reason. We went to the "Journey Through Bethleham" this past weekend and it was so cool....it just added another aspect to the story as you walk through on your way to Bethleham. It is so awesome to do this stuff with family and friends. I think it's the community piece that can really bring Jesus alive or totally wipe him out depending on how you choose to use your time together. Okay, I am officially rambling.
I read Proverbs 3 today because that is what our we are talking about in community group. I was struck by the thought of submission before direction. How we can't ackowledge God with our entire being and expect direction without submitting to him in all ways. I also have been thinking about how easy it is to trust God in things that we can't physically control, like our health or future but how easy it is to hold onto things that we can control, like our finances or how we parent our children. Why can't we submit completely to God in all ways? Wouldn't it be so much easier?
pray for Lewis this morning - he's getting tubes & their cutting the cyst off of his throat.Peace,-t
Okay, I feel like today was such a good day for hearing God. -Let me first confess....I have been doing a terrible job of taking the little things to God in prayer. This is something that usually comes naturally and it's not right now. I am sure that's it's a laziness issue on my part. -I spent a lot of time talking/thinking about our church issues and what's going on with Kevin and our church. I've had thoughts and God is shaping them for me. This has been pressing on my heart and the processing has really started. I keep going back to Kevin's first question, "Are we all on board?" and the fact that we never really directly answered that question even though we all agree that it's a noble notion. -I looked up several "joy" verses today. It seems that often joy verses are imbedded in with trials. I'm sure that to be joyful in Christ is not to be a feeling (happy or sad) but to make the choice.-I wonder why God has shaped me the way he has.....why can't I just be a status quo person? Sometimes I embrace how he's made me and sometimes I just wish I could shut myself up! Ugh!-It's been a good day to walk into some of these issues.
Friday Confessions:- I confess that I was really selfish with my time this week.- I confess that I had little compassion for Kristin several times when I know that’s what she needed.- I confess that it seems like I need good things to happen to me in order to feel happy or content.- I confess that I’m using realities like not having an office or a clear direction as excuses not to be creative.- I confess that my insecurities got the best of me several times this week.- I confess that I didn’t spend really good alone time in solitude and meditation this week.- I confess that I had three times where I encountered the scripture in groups (church on Sunday, staff mtg. & community group) and that all of those were more meaningful than any of my personal quiet times.
sorry i've been mia this week. ben woke up tuesday morning throwing up, and i had it by that afternoon. i was pretty much out of pocket t/w and recovering thursday. as far as disciplines this week, i've been re-reading a book by henri nouwen called 'life of the beloved' in it he writes: being the beloved expresses the core truth of our existence. being the beloved is the orgin and the fulfillment of the life of the spirit. it has been good for me to reflect on the idea that i am God's Beloved, because i have lost sight of that. especially in this season where i feel like i really don't have my shit together, i am realizing how much of my identity is caught up in my job/success/productivity rather than my identity being that i am God's beloved son. its been a great reminder this week.Confessions:i confess that my identity comes from so many different places rather than being God's beloved.i confess that while we were decorating the xmas tree last night, i was getting frustrated with sam and ben b/c they were really excited (imagine that) and screwing around too much.i confess that when i am sick, i turn into an enormous baby. i think that everything should revolved around me (however when allison is sick, my attitude changes to: just deal with it)i confess that i have let my worries about certain things get the best of me.i confess that i really lack faith in God right now.
Confessions--I ate way too much this week, my discipline with food stinks.-Kadi accused me of being to critical of her and she was right! I made her leave for school feeling totally insecure....way to go mom!-I missed my dad this week....I've not really had a relationship with him since I was 14 and I almost never care (honestly) but this week as I wrote out his Christmas card (our one and only communication per year) I actually wished to see him. -I am thinking of blowing off Uplift tomorrow because of kid stuff. So do I go, which I should, or do I stay home for an extra hour of rest before running around like crazy? I think becaue I'm not really "accounted for" it's making me less committed...that is awful....so I guess I'm confessing to laziness.
-I confess that I am yelling entirely too much at Skylee-I confess that I have been very selfish of my time lately-I confess that I haven't had a good quiet time this week-I confess than I am extremly disappointed in Ken's parents and I want to withhold the kids from them. -I confess that I am not using my God given talents to better serve him...mostly out of laziness.
I’ve had a crappy week for devos. I tried to pray but it felt so flat. I did have a meaningful time reading in John (still), 20:31-“but these are written (referring to the miraculous signs He showed to the disciples after he had risen) that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and that by believing you may have life in his name”Friday confession: I confess I am frustrated and indignant with God because I feel confused about some stuff and I'm wondering why the heck he is not showing me some answers. I confess that I cussed too much this week. I confess that I am mad preemptively because Bill is leaving for 5 days next week, and I am ruining the weekend, while he is still here, because I am pissed about being left. I confess that I had a really critical spirit at an all girls Christmas party Friday.I confess that have been rowing really hard upstream trying to orchestrate some things for myself, completely in my own power, I want you to know, my friends, I’m going to try to let go of the oars.
I prayed the hours from the BCP today. I'm going to try and do that throughout advent as much as possible. There was a really interesting quote from Thomas Merton:"[A publisher asked me to write something on 'The Secret of Success,' and I refused.] If I had a message to my contemporaries, I said, it was surely this: Be anything you like, be madmen, drunks, and bastards of every shape and form, but at all costs avoid one thing: success. ... If you have learned only how to be a success, your life has probably been wasted. If a university concentrates on producing successful people, it is lamentably failing in its obligation to society and to the students themselves."I wonder, could you insert "church" for the word "university" in the last sentence? Peace,-t
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