Thursday, January 14, 2010

Viola - on 'movements'

So many things can replace our Lord. But God’s eternal purpose—that which has been in his heart since before time—will never be fulfilled if our first rattle out of the box is a new way of doing church, a method for multiplying churches, or a technique to change the world. God’s purpose will only be restored if we blindly and singularly make Christ our pursuit, our life, and our motive. Everything else will flow out of that

Taken from this blog entry. Thought it was really good:

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Who decides what is important?

I don't seem to be in a writing season right now.... BUT I have some random thoughts that have been on my mind for a few months that I have to try to write out. I've been thinking about priorities, what we make important in our lives, in our churches, wherever .... and how crazy it is that we can distort reality so much and go years with thinking something is SOO important to only find out it isn't important at ALL except that we made it important. Yet in our own realities, it WAS truly soo important to us.... but our reality was wrong and we didn't even know it. It takes a paradigm shift to bring us to True reality.

This is true in our personal lives but I'll just use the example of this I see in churches. In my experiences the past years, it has been so eye-opening how many different aspects of "church" people make SOO important. It seems we segregate all the church is - into categories: creating a Sunday morning environment, children's ministry, outreach, worship through music, Bible study classes, whatever - and everything is so segregated in many of our church communities. Then once segregated, different 'parts' are given different values. It all gets so complicated if we let it.... and what's amazing to me is that we... simply by making a decision that something is important.... can make something important. We have that much power and free will. Scary! Even if in God's eyes it is not important --- we can make it more important in *our* lives or our community simply by saying it is so (not always in words!).

Many times it's not like we sit and make a list of what's important and then rank them -- but it happens without us even realizing. We don't keep track of where our pennies are going so before we know it our dollars are gone. We don't keep track of where our minutes are going and before we know it, the days are gone. We make our own realities that are so far from the Truth just simply by where we pour our treasures. Our time & money & gifts. The verse, For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also - Matthew 6:21 really speaks to this as well. Wherever you pour your treasures... that's where your heart will be. Whether you like it or not -- wherever you put your treasures, your heart follows. A man's heart will be upon what he treasures most - what he gives the most time/resources/attention/focus.

So ultimately - the goal, I believe, is to allow God to change, mold and conform us to Him to such a point that what is important to Him, is important to us. If we allow, He will make what is most important to Him... most important to us.

It seems to me that He has made it really simple for us, This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." Matthew 22:38 - 40. All our decisions and priorities must be filtered through these 2 commandments. Are we upholding these two above all else?

What am I making most important? What sort of reality am I living in that isn't based on Truth? What do my church or spiritual leaders make most important that is being passed on to the community?

[Regarding this example of churches..... it's just an example. I'm not saying that these components of some church communities are not right/good because they are... but when they become more important than the 2 greatest commandments...rather than support beams for them then there lies the problem. What should be talked about is the gospel message and those 2 greatest commandments constantly and when other items are talked about - the ways to the mean, they must always be talked about how they relate to the bigger picture/purpose. Nothing can be given greater importance than those 2 greatest commandments]

Sunday, January 3, 2010

2009/2010 Thoughts :)

3-4 words that describe this past year… educational, blessed, turning points

if 2009 was a book, i’d title it.... freedom isn't free

i am really glad i tried… exiting one church community & entering a new one

something that really surprised me was… how much God can change things in a year!! (or an hour!) :)

the most courageous thing i did this year was…. speak the dreams & visions God had stirred in me. kept quiet when He asked me to no matter the pain or frustration. given grace that wasn't deserved. stepped away from organizations He no longer wanted me apart of.

i tried to let go of…. pain from the past. seeking approval & validation from others. guilt.

i tried to hold on to… people being more important than any system or "thing"

i felt more hopeful about… what is possible with God.

i felt less anxious about… knowing the plan. having a plan.

a relationship i feel extra grateful for this year…. too many to count but certainly as always my family (hubby, Raymond, mom, dad, sister, brother) and then the Pratts, Caples, Minnow, Kathy, Shelby, Robles, Russ, Allens, ahhh I even feel bad listing these because there are SOO many! :)

this year, i noticed God at work in… my family. my heart. my parenting. my marriage. our community/town. our finances.

in 2010…
words i hope describe this upcoming year…. full of hope, peace, joy, fruitful

something new i really want to try… community of close relationships - thrive group - whatever you want to call it with full blown community/communication. checkin/checkout. open discussion. work on communication. commitment.

a relationship i want to pour more of my heart and time into… Raymond, Evelyn, Brandon

a way i want to take better care of myself is…exercise, communicate any postpartum feelings after baby Evelyn comes, better communication, trust in God in me.

a way i want to reach out to others is… however God will call me. Please God make it clear what you are asking of me! playdates during the week with others moms & babies. Having people into our home more.

i’d really love to experience more of God’s peace in…. my parenting - of Raymond and baby Evelyn both. the journey.

i’m going to need God’s courage to…. move forward to what He is calling us to.

this year I hope i let go of… the hurt I felt in 2009.

this year i hope i can hold on to…. hope

one dream i have for 2010 is… close community/mentors/mentorees (sharpeners) for us. new house. people with open ears/hearts so we can share what God has done in us. a ministry we feel called to pour our time & money into.

*this survey was taken from*