Tuesday, March 30, 2010

To the Secretary of Christ...

I don't feel rebellious. I don't feel uneasy about the course I am on. I just don't agree with who we've become.

I don't believe that 10% is what He meant. I think we hang on to it out of our need for checks and balances.

I don't believe in loyalty to the institution. I think we require it out of insecurity.

I don't believe in the priority of the 'Service' itself. I think we push it because of our need to control.

I don't believe in competing with the world. I think we do it because we lack identity.

I don't believe in the necessity of being 'cutting edge' or modernizing. I think the truth never needs adaptation, just clarification.

I don't believe in puffed up salaries that are funded by people's sacrifice. I think we are taking advantage.

i am bothered by our show when there is no sign of righteous living.

i am bothered when our song leaders are passed off as worship leaders.

i am bothered by sermons that are doctrinally incorrect and double minded.

i am bothered by the fact that many hearers wouldn't even know what is correct and what isn't.

i am bothered by the needs that go unmet because they aren't a part of our institution's focus.

i am bothered by the fact that ambition goes unrecognized and is often misrepresented as passion.

i have hope that we can do better.

i have hope that we will discover who we are in this world and to our God.

i have hope that we will grow in utilization of all we have been given.

i have hope that we will speak truth and walk out justice.

i have hope that we will one day give up our ideas
and our control of the institution
and allow ourselves to become
the Church,
a Bride,
and no longer a Secretary.
i have hope.

Isaiah 1:12-27

Friday, March 26, 2010


Can't take my eyes off of you. no distractions, no one even knows i'm here.

Hide me. fit me in. wrap me up in your meaning and wanting.

Relish me. let me rest here. no resistance, no fight or opposition in sight.

I am but yours and yours alone. uphold me as you so desire.

Show me how i may please you. show me the road and i will journey.

Take me with you. when its all over, i just want to be with you.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

the brighter side of meaninglessness

sometimes i wonder if i'd be a millionaire by now, if only i had tithed for the last 7 years. imagine all the closer parking spots i've missed out on, or the bargains at the grocery store & the mall. maybe i'd be married by now and have 9 kids (i'd birth 10 but tithe one of them)... oh tithing, you're always holding me back.

i didn't get the flu this year. i got the shot.
i didn't get the H1N1 either. i didn't get the shot.
i've kissed a few guys in my time and i never got mono.
i danced at a wedding and i didn't get pregnant.
i was texting while i was driving and didn't have an accident.
i had a piece of cheesecake and didn't have an explosion.
i yelled at the crazy driver downtown and didn't get killed.

i returned a kind answer to a bully and he told me to shut the hell up.
i kept my cool and didn't lose my head and she still got angry.
i played by the rules and gave all the right answers and still didn't get chosen.
i opened my wallet, my home, my heart and i haven't heard from them in months.
i submitted, i served, i respected, i loved, and i wasn't what he wanted.
"i let go, i let God", and i let opportunity pass right by.
i took time for a sabbath and i got a parking ticket.

so what's the point? where is my punishment? where is my reward? where is my consequence? 3 words: mercy, grace, & misunderstanding. as humans we crave punishment & reward. we need consequence or we feel that our actions are meaningless. i am one of the crazies within the church that thinks solomon wasn't off of his rocker when he wrote ecclesiastes. he was the wisest man and perhaps he has been misunderstood. for me, it isn't cynical or depressing to realize that "everything is meaningless", it is actually quite freeing. he concluded his teaching with this: "fear God & do what He tells you." that's it folks. paul spoke of the one reward promised, that your race will end. you will arrive at the end and that is your greatest reward. because at the end you will meet with your maker, your Father, your Sovereign God.
Break open your words, let the light shine out, let ordinary people see the meaning.
Psalm 119:130

What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

You were made for greater things...

You’re okay. Everything is okay. You’re moving forward. You’re accomplishing goals. You’re seeing the difference. You’re setting your sights high. But your luster is lacking and your love has become lazy.

May I take a moment and elaborate on your beauty? Chaos surrounds, but your foundation was set and blessed to be unmovable. You were meant to last. You were meant to grow. You were meant to shine. You were made for His glory. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither does a man light a lamp and place it under a bowl. You were made to love and be loved. You were made to be a reflection of beauty and in essence become beautiful. You were made for greater things.

You were designed to make peace. You were fashioned to carry and deliver goodness. You were given gifts to disperse freely, without hesitation or qualification. You were meant to multiply. You were created for community. You were cultivated for covenant. You were set up to spread yourself. The wandering man may never realize his destination, but the man who wonders not only arrives, he arrives transformed. You were made for wonder. You were made for greater things.

I want to feel safe when I am with you, but I cannot. I desire to be cherished by you, but you are not able. I ask you to accept me, but you’d rather categorize me. I approach with my head down, but you are too weak to lift it up. I come with my burdens and you ask me to check them at the door. My understanding makes you nervous. My gifts get me in to your good grace. You collect them for your use and pleasure, and then look the other way when I’m spent. You were made for greater things.

Love never gives up…
1 Corinthians 13:4

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

the Risk of Enlisting

i was thinking last week that writing this blog without generalizations and metaphors is a big risk and letting my thoughts be known makes me quite vulnerable. obedience is always a risk. movement is always a risk. heck, getting out of bed in the morning is a risk. but we can't carry out obedience without encountering risk.

in the church hunt, i have felt the risk every time i walk through the doors of a new church gathering. honestly i wonder if they will use me or love me, if they will cherish me or discard me when they've had their fill of me. smiling faces and warm receptions can be so deceiving. i've been welcomed, pursued, utilized, and then forgotten time and time again. will it ever turn out any differently?

to me it's like coming out of a relationship with a hope for another that will be different, but a fear that it will again be more of the same. i have hope. i hope that's clear. i haven't given up on the Church. i serve the church well. i am an asset and a pain in the ass. it's the perfect combo really. they'll never have to pay me a dime for my time and they'll never have to put on a show or do a little dance to get me on board. they'll also never have to prove their worth to have my heart. the Church only has to love me, accept me, cherish me, and protect me.

is that a foreign idea, that the church would cherish you? we hear frequently about loving the church, protecting the church, cherishing the church, but is the institution looking after us? church managers, do you hear what i'm saying? there are people under your care that are feeling used and then discarded, courted and then rejected, spotlighted and then abandoned. feed your sheep. nurture them and protect them. they are risking everything, eternity and accountability, by submitting to your care... please do not take that lightly.

i may approach church differently than a lot of people, but i am not alone in my understanding. i am not alone in my nervousness and hesitation at the thought of joining in again. the church is a divine idea. the church is ordained by God. the church is a tool for His glory. the church is a bride in preparation. the church is an extension of His goodness. and the church is a very scary place for those that have been mishandled by its managers. but like me, there are those that continue the hunt and make ourselves vulnerable to risk again... because we refuse to give up on the Church, whether or not the Church has given up on us.

"Now it's up to you. Be on your toes - both for yourselves and your congregation of sheep. The Holy Spirit has put you in charge of these people - God's people they are - to guard and protect them. God himself thought they were worth dying for.
Acts 20:28 Msg

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Fiction: Friend or Foe

when i was a little girl i went to sunday school. sometimes i even wore a bonnet. i remember being told fantastical stories about heroes, miracles, floods, and fires. i remember the colorful felt board that was somehow supposed to transport me, via my 5 year old imagination, into the the world of biblical times. i remember being told that there were 2 of every kind of animal on Noah's ark. i also remember being told that in heaven there were streets of gold and that we each got a mansion and maybe, just maybe, we'd be able to fly! i remember my favourite hymn was "I'll Fly Away". it's not that i was altogether anxious about the proposed rapture, but more that i had much interest in flying:) and if there was flying in heaven, then that's where i wanted to end up. i also remember, like one would remember a near fatal car accident, the day that i read the story of the Great Flood and found that there were more than just 2 of every kind of animal... way more. and then to add even more devastation... noah got drunk! i also lost interest in heaven when i realized that the ability to fly wasn't promised. "i'll get there when i get there", i thought. i just wasn't in any hurry. those are only two examples of my personal discovery of truth after being fed fiction.

my life has been a journey of uncovering mystery after mystery... pursuing truth and pursuing God. why do we adapt, simplify, or even sometimes offer half truths when sharing God's Word? there is an interesting debate to be had on whether Christ actually broke-down the Gospel or made it even more mysterious by speaking in parables. i side with the thought that he added to its mystery. God seems to like words like "reveal" & "revelation". He seems to move in "mystery". mystery provokes action and it taps into the "hunter" side of our humanity.

when i was very young my parents purchased a bible for me. it had my name embossed on it in gold and i was asked what color bible i would like. i went with the pink Precious Moments bible. my next bible was a Cambridge King James... fancy shmancy. after that i purchased, on my own, a NIV Thompson Chain Reference bible. and then lastly i purchased the Message Remix, lol! for the record, we had a lot of bibles in the house. my mom was the top bible salesperson at the local religious bookstore & my dad worked for the international bible publishing company, Editorial Vida. we had loads of bibles. my parents also encouraged me to read my bible. if i had questions, they would tell me where to look and read it for myself. they had their answers and i was prodded to get my own. as my brothers and i grew older we had more and more questions. "the preacher said blah blah blah, but my bible said blah blah blah." "Daddy who's right?" my dad had a degree in Bible and my mom had a deep love for it... both of my parents, in essence, were devout truth seekers and they passed this on to their children.

i often feel that a majority of those that are in management of the church fear the notion of truth being revealed, if truth is not being fed straight from them. do they fear that if we read Malachi we may see what is actually being stated? or if we read Acts we may see the layout for what a church truly is? can we not handle how many animals were really on the ark? could we not digest the possibility that heaven may be very different than what we've been told? this is the sure thing, the foundational truth, and upon this all other portions of truth find their rest... that Christ is the Son of God and through Him, salvation is ours. the bible says in 1 Timothy 2:4 that God wants all to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. whether we read truth or are told truth, we are afforded the beautiful yet quite painstaking journey of knowing truth. we must come to know it. this takes effort. this takes hunger. this takes time.

christians should speak truth and point to truth so that all may come to know what is truth. fiction may be easier, but it sets us up for mistrust. fiction may seem more clean cut, but it is the messy mystery that truly makes the miracle. fiction is our foe and truth is our freedom.

Psalm 25:4-5