Wednesday, November 29, 2006

When Time....

What happens when I am given unrestricted space to be. Think. Read. Ruminate. Pray. Bicycle. Talk. And not least right now?

I'm amazed at the deep passions that are welling up within me. The deep convictions that are challenging the way I'm living. The deep Truth in which I am longing to be transformed. The deep church/community that I long for.

As I learn, I'm antsy to act. I called Nancy down in Fresno wanting to invest in her and in her deep community with poor and rich, Black, Latino, White, homeless and home owners. I wanted to invite homeless people to come for tea, wash their clothes and maybe stay in one of our 3 empty rooms. Today I saw a family's belongings out on the lawn in front of an apartment building and I wanted to make sure they had a place to go. If not, they could stay with me. I want to hang out at the homeless shelter and get to know my neighbors on the street. I wanted to give away all of the extra sleeping bags (at least 2) and tent I have to those who are “camping” every night.

I remember last year when I was down in Biloxi the joy of going to Wal-Mart and buying $100 worth of sleeping bags (about 8) and going down the block and handing them out to the beautiful families who were without homes. God's economy?

I was talking today to a new friend who shared that her favorite experience in life so far was the year she spent in Mexico on a “missions” trip. She went to share and serve and instead came face to face with the mission of God – the kingdom of God...a community of sharing – caring for needs as they arose. Who got missionized – the community or my friend or both?

My happiest times (when not in the mountains) and the times that I am most content happen when I am joyfully giving myself to others in service and in community whether in Fresno, Biloxi, Beyond's like we are supposed to live it daily instead of as a mission trip “high”.

What does it look like here? What does it look like in the midst of a new marriage? Who is my community? Do I need to seek it out or will it seek me out? I read today something new... something about there being a salve in salvation...a healing balm in salvation...can the salve be applied without anyone there to rub it in? I don't think so... Plus, salves tend to smell rather exotic and peaceful...think of Tiger Balm...don't you want to be around the fragrant salve of Christ?

Attention Sunday PM: What does a community of children playing in the mud and sharing sandwiches and the Lord's table look like in that holy space? Because it is HOLY...God dwells with you every time you walk in to the Fireside room or the Crown and Anchor. The salve is applied every time the ladies meet for tea and ruminate with Lisa on the the Scriptures. The fragrance permeates the room when Brian and Bob and Jeff and Clyde and Greg and Brooks and Michael “bond” - the fragrance of Christ and other fragrances as well- Be church to each other, be community and pray for us who are wandering looking for what has been lost...Jen Summers, Kari who married the Turk, Jenna and Dan, Wayne, Josh and Dana, Kim and Scott, Juliette, Doug and Lyn and Haley, Mark and AriAnn, Billy and Pamela, Rodger and Cathy, and me!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Some fun thoughts

Every once in a while I will pick up a book where within the first few sentences I realize that the book has the potential to change how I view my life and my word. That happened this morning when I picked up Shane Claiborne’s “The Irresistible Revolution”. Shane is a quirky fellow of 30 who has decided to live his life as if the words of Jesus are true and worthy to be followed. My husband Alex is reading the book with four 9th grade boys – pretty life changing stuff kids who are just beginning high school.

If you are looking for a change of pace, you might want to be refreshed by the words of a young man who is seeking a new Way and a new world – one dreamt about by the fathers of faith and promised by the Son of God.

A few reads that have profoundly encouraged me:

Soul Survivor by Philip Yancy

Till We Have Faces by CS Lewis

Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller

“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”

Romans 8:5-6 (NRSV)

May we seek the Spirit today!

Lots of Love,