And I thought it was just a book… (3/6/2011)

But You, O Lord, are a shield for me, My glory and the One who lifts up my head –

Psalms 3:3

It’s been an eventful day… And again, I’ve  seen this scripture live and breathe as surely as I do, but that one wasn’t the only one:

Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Matthew 5:23

Pastor Wells practically called me out this morning. Though I was standing next to him as we began communion, I was sure that he had looked directly into my eyes and was being very intentional about speaking to me. Or maybe that was just how I saw it: it was probably just the conviction of the Holy Spirit weighing on my conscience… I still swear that for the last couple weeks he’s been looking at me differently, like he knows something about me I don’t know he does. That or maybe, he’s suddenly seeing something new in my eyes and is trying to bring it out so he can make use of it, or defuse it…

I swear that man can see right through me.

Either way, I know that God was speaking because James and I had that conversation yesterday: I’m bitter, and I know it.

The heart knows its own bitterness, And a stranger does not share its joy. Proverbs 14:10

He asked me if I had spoken with a girl who had been a close friend lately, and I told him politely that I had no intent to speak with or even think of that person at this point in time. And as soon as the words had left my lips, I regretted it; I knew that I had just set myself up for judgement. That irritated me because honestly, I still don’t want to deal with it.

I wish I still had that choice.

I excused myself from the communion table to make that phone call. I didn’t want to and I’m sure I sounded angry, but I was obedient. Thankfully it went to voicemail; I almost hung up, but I knew better. I left as civil of a message as I could and let it be.

I don’t even know what I’m supposed to say to her, I don’t really trust her, and at this point, I don’t actually expect anything from her, so I guess I just need to get over it, huh?

Easier said than done.

God brings healing though. Even though I left home feeling bogged down and somber, 3 things in particular lifted my spirits:

1)      Teaching the high school class

I love teaching those kids! My assignment was to teach them how to read the Bible and get something from it by taking them through Romans 1:1-7. Long story short: we did it! As a teacher, it is sometimes a challenge for me to move from simply teaching to give information to actually giving application. My mind can fill in those blanks all by itself, so often I teach like everyone else’s brains do the same thing, I didn’t fall into that trap today. We moved smoothly from the information aspect to making it relational, to making it inspirational and immediately applicable! It was beautiful! I watched us take a complete journey in their eyes; I saw them swell with knowledge and I watched frustration build within them as all it seemed useless as I trained them in using mind muscles they had forgotten they possessed. We started tying everything together and they started finding their footing taking progressively swifter strides down the runway when we achieved liftoff! A second later we burst through the clouds together and suddenly, everything made sense for them. I saw it all. Nothing brings me greater joy than seeing people come of age like that right before my eyes. The perfect pick-me-up!

2)      Worship Sunday evening

After church, I rushed home for the Grove’s (the name of the church we’re planting in Lake Elsinore) leadership meeting, when I pulled up at the house and opened the door a lake breeze caressed my head while the sun wrapped me in its loving embrace.

He knows me. {O Lord, You have searched me and known me. Psalm 139:1}

That’s all I could think. The weather couldn’t have been any better at that moment. I grabbed a chair and sat down on the porch, where worship was just about to begin. Andrea, a quiet and honest Mexican woman, who is one of the most outgoing and sincere people I’ve ever met commented on how beautiful the weather was, and inspired me to close my eyes and listen to the breeze streaming in between the tinkling wind chimes above us keeping some sort of divine time signature. I felt it weave around our bodies dancing to the beat of that precious metal melody beckoning us to join it singing “How Great is Our God” {Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all you stars of light! Psalms 148:1-4}

Someone must’ve designed acoustic guitars specifically for days like this.

Then God brought and old poem of mine to mind, so I carefully fit it right into the symphony surrounding me. Perfect, not in practice, but in position. [God is teaching me the doctrine of sanctification through music, it’s so crazy!]

3)      Meaningful Verbal Affirmation

It’s becoming more and more clear to me that one of the most valuable things in the world to me is meaningful verbal affirmation, not like pat-on-the-head type stuff, but when someone is literally inspired to take a second and reach down inside their soul and tell me what their heart is saying. That means the world to me. This happened twice to me today, once from the former Miss Andrea, the second from one of a young woman in my high school class. That’s the kind of stuff that keeps me going. {A man takes joy in giving an answer; and a timely word—how good that is! Proverbs 15:23}

All in all, from the lowest point to the highest: “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

One response to “And I thought it was just a book… (3/6/2011)

  1. It was a beautiful day of worship. Wasn’t it? I am so blessed to know you and be a part of the same team for Christ. :)

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