What about the Change?

IMG_0842I’m about to bloody my theological knuckles, so buckle up.  Strap in.  Brace yourself.  And hold onto something.  It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

I figured I should put that warning there since there’s a chance I’ll be metaphorically and rhetorically crackin’ skulls with today’s post.  And I can’t take credit for the inspiration of these words.  I blame the twitter user ENT Monkey.  Dude even has a website.  It all started in the early morning hours today with this tweet.

I got a kick out of it because it felt like a nudge in my side.  You when someone pokes you and taps you on the shoulder to draw your attention to something?  That was this tweet for me.  I responded.

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NaBloWriMo 2013 Day 22

This is “A Unwritten Letter”.  Couple of years back this was a fresh emotion playing upon my heart.  This is me writing a letter to the someone to finally close it out.  I may do more of these for National Blog Writing Month.  We’ll see.  Onwards!

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IMG_1100I wish I could have told you how I felt about you.  I wish you could have heard me describe how when I looked into your eyes I felt as I’d come home finally.  I had hoped you’d see what my heart was doing as you walked away or when you smiled.  Or when you did just about anything.  The laugh, the roll of your eyes when you were annoyed with me.  The way you looked beautiful no matter what kind of day you’d had.  The manner of clothing and colors that never failed to accentuate your beauty.

You were something to me.  You probably realized it and did the smart thing by putting distance between us.  The signals you gave were pretty clear.  You didn’t want me that way.

The truth?  You were the first girl that when I hadn’t seen you I felt a strange tugging in my heart.  I realized the terrifying truth.  I liked you and probably more than you would have been comfortable with at the time.  Or anytime.  I clearly missed you.  And that was scary and wonderful at the same time.

But you didn’t want that.  So I quietly buried those emotions, feelings and hopes.  I had to toss some gasoline on it and let it burn for a bit longer than I anticipated.  It helped clean the wound I’d caused in my heart trying to chase you.  I patched it up and walked on down the line.

I still miss you sometimes.  I guess that scar tissue with those emotions will never truly fade away.

How Ministry Makes Us Better

You could also probably title this post “Volunteering Makes Us Better” but I like the ring of the original.

There is great truth in the statement.  I’ve been doing children’s and youth ministry since 1992.  That’s 21 years of my 31 years on this planet.  And I can tell you this right now – if those 21 years had been spent outside of ministry and volunteering – you wouldn’t recognize the man sitting at the keyboard right now.  You probably wouldn’t want to hang out with him.  There’s a good chance he wouldn’t care about much outside of his own world.  The women in (and out) of his life probably wouldn’t touch him with a ten foot pole.  He’d be a jerk.  Douchebag.  Probably a slacker or even a player.  There wouldn’t be a humble bone in his body.  Oh and he’d have the language of several sailors and the respect of several less.

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Honoring and Valuing Others

imageTonight’s devotional is hard. The story so far is we’ve taken a hop and a skip past the story of David and Goliath. We’ve found ourselves in 1 Samuel 26:7-11 in which David and Abishai are sneaking into Saul’s camp. A moment comes when David’s companion notices that the current King is splayed out in the center of camp. A perfect moment is at hand. David could strike down Saul and the rest would be history.

And yet David does not seize the day (or the spear) and instead replies that he would not dare kill God’s anointed. He proclaims that Saul will either die in his bed, by God’s Hand or in battle but he will not be the one to do such a thing.

It’s a heavy concept to wrap our head around – the idea that David would have the wherewithal to resist the opportunity to kill the tormentor. Not just that but that he would have the depth of faith to give it up to God and His plan for Saul – this speaks volumes. It also is a direct challenge to us and the drama we allow to fill our lives. In the devotional book it challenges me to, “…think of the people you consider your enemies. Pray for them and ask God to help you honor them, even though doing so may seem impossible. Seek out intentional opportunities to honor those who dishonor you and to value the lives of those who do not value you.”

To say that today’s devotional is a whopper would be understating it. There’s much to chew on here, more to marinate on in the brain and plenty to stew in the heart about. So, grab a chunk off and see what you come up with. Faith in Christ is never stronger than when pushed, prodded and poked with a stick.