Tuesday, July 29, 2008

You were saying?

"Now as they [Jesus and His disciples] were traveling along, He entered a village; and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home. She had a sister called Mary, who was seated at the Lord's feet, listening to His word. But Martha was distracted with all her preparations [or much service]" Luke 10:38-40a

I have long known the chilling words of Jesus in 10:41-42: "Martha, Martha...only one thing is necessary...", but the other day I re-read the passage and my heart zoned in on the verses above.

Martha wasn't listening to Jesus' word because she was distracted with all her preparations. She was distracted with much service.

Do I ever miss the Lord's word because I am distracted with my service?


If Americans changed the way we spent money, thought about money, revered money, would our economy completely collapse?

Monday, July 28, 2008


After reading headlines about bombings in 3 different countries and a shooting in our own, listening to NPR in the car, and processing a video I saw in church yesterday about the Good Samaritan, I heard this song.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Keyboard shortcuts

My very dear boyfriend taught me sometime ago a simple trick I thought I would never use. Instead of typing in an entire web address, you can just type in the primary word, for example "blogger" and then hit ctrl-enter and viola! www.blogger.com is instantly entered and away you go! Well, yesterday I was attempting to do this (I use it all the time now), and I accidentally hit the shift key instead of control (sometimes I type a little too fast). Suddenly I was searching for istockphoto.net not istockphoto.com! Ooh, I thought, what if I could find a shortcut for .org as well....

Ladies and gentlemen I never knew it was possible, but yes, you can hit control-shift-enter and viola! any .org address is complete. I was so excited, I simply had to share it with both of you!

I can hardly wait to get home and see if the same is possible on my Mac!

Friday, July 11, 2008

An experience...

Meet Mathabo. She is a young girl living in Lesotho (in Africa). Her life and story was the one I entered into at the World Vision Experience. It was an incredible walking exhibit, one that attempted to submerge you in the world of a child affected by AIDS through different rooms and an audio tour. You are introduced to one of 4 children, shown their home, pictures of them and the people in their life, hear how AIDS directly affected them. It was a powerful feeling to hear their voices and see their faces.

To sit by the bed of Mathabo's mother and look up to see her aching face on the wall above the bed while listening to Mathabo encourage her to get better.

We sat in a clinic waiting for the result of our AIDS test, sounds of crying babies and coughing neighbors filled our ears until we were finally called. After hearing the rest of Mathabo's story we were lead into a chapel. This, I think, impacted me most. Staring into the beautiful faces, picture after picture, some of them with the red + that denoted your test was positive stamped over their faces.

When faced with something so big - so many children fighting against something so deadly - how do we respond? I hardly know. I know I can pray. God is bigger - it's so simple, the word barely doing a proper job, but I confess I can't think of a better.

Pictures from World Vision Experience: AIDS. The exhibit exists to raise awareness. World Vision's HopeChild sponsorship program is specifically for children directly affected by AIDS.

Salt Lake City - After (it's a long one!)

You are here...
...to help the hurting
...to encounter Christ
...to lead.

What an amazing week! To be honest, I'm still kind of shocked it's over (though we returned a week ago). I wish I hadn't wasted Sunday and Monday struggling with my own attitude, but I awoke Tuesday with renewed energy and joy at being in Salt Lake City. Praise God that I was able to get past myself at least a little and be fully there. It was a blessing and a privilege to hear the students process this week and all they heard. We got to spend time Tuesday night with my former youth pastor and hear his charge to our students. Wednesday night Kelly and I got to hear the girls process an incredible presentation on leadership! Seriously, it was incredible!

I am so excited to see what happens not only in the ministry I serve in at large but also in my own life and leadership! One thing I was reminded of this week was that God is bigger - than anything I could ever fear or worry about or wonder about or get stressed over. When something seems too big all I need to do is take a deep breath, remember He is bigger, He is in control, and take it all one step at a time.

Some thoughts and questions I boxed while taking notes:
  • Where does your passion lie?
  • (Rev. 4) How do you see God?
  • (Acts 16:11-34) Show the Gospel by our radical generosity, inexplicable love, and our possession of radical joy in the midst of hardship and persecution.
  • Valuing something more than life itself - that is what we worship.
  • The love of Christ compels me...
  • Where is your heart, your home?
  • (John 4) What things do you rely on to make you happy? - Where do you seek fulfillment? - God is the only source for joy, love, fulfillment.
  • Spend time with God.
  • When headed somewhere you aren't quite sure how God can use you - ask Him why, be open to whatever He might have for you in that place.
  • It's about surrender - you and God.
  • (Dan 3) What are you willing to give up? That shows the value you put on God.
  • What you focus on expands.
  • Be a river flowing, not a flood destroying (Pr. 29:18)
  • Remember the iceberg - your character is the 90% below the surface and it will always be the part that sinks the ship (Lk 6)
  • Your greatest value is what is inside (2 Cor 5:17)
  • Light a candle, don't curse the darkness.
  • Why are we embarrassed by Jesus?
  • Count the cost.
  • Love people - listen to them.
  • God is with you
  • Pray for opportunity
  • What God starts, God provides the resources to finish.

This isn't even everything. It's years of life lessons crammed into one week. Good reminders, new lessons, challenges and promises. I can count the cost, seek God, serve Him, live for Him, love and be a fool for Him - He is bigger, He is the only one that will never fail me, and He is reaching out to this generation, to every generation, to stand up and fight against the world, one soul at a time. Me first.