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Monday, January 14, 2013

the rat running through the house, Les Miserables, our enormous waste, and some tidbits from a crazy week.

this has been a crazy few weeks. As most of you know, the engine quit working on my car. So, during the course of the past few weeks, I have been negotiating with mechanics and trying to find the best price on a new engine.
Around the same time, my cell phone quit working. So, during the course of about two weeks, the majority of what I owned was broken. I have to trust that there is a reason for all of this and that all things work for the good.. I also realize that these minor inconveniences are nothing compared to the trauma and tragedy faced by people every single day.

One thing I can say is that I am grateful for family members who have let me borrow their vehicles while mine gets repaired.

More minor drama came last Sunday, when my borrowed car got stuck in the mud. I missed church that day. My dad pulled me out with his truck at the last minute. I didn't have time to get ready for church, so instead, my sister and I decided to take the love of Jesus to the nursing home. We visited my friend Rick, who has terminal cancer. We prayed for him. I believe in the power of God and that He still heals people. I KNOW this..and yet, I am never quite sure who to pray for.. A man once told my grandmother that she was going to be healed, and she wasn't.. This kind of messed me up and made me cautious about telling someone something that may or may not be God's will.. anyhow, I'm confused on this issue, but I'm praying that God will begin to show me things in this area.
We also visited Mrs. Dorothy and her husband. Mrs. Dorothy is a very frail little old lady. Her husband is blind. He was absolutely smitten with our kids. He kept saying how happy he was that we came. Mrs. Dorothy told my sister that she loved her sweater. So, my sister took it off and gave it to her. Of course, she doesn't know that I'm writing this..because she is not one to draw attention to herself ..

This week, I saw Les Miserables twice. I fell in love with the characters. I fell in love with the fact that something so beautiful could actually come to a theater. I fell in love with the grace shown to Jean Valjean, and how that grace set him on a course that would change his life.
I felt such empathy and compassion for Fontaine, and realized that, in real life, she would be judged, thrown under a bus, and left for dead.
I fell in love with the music..I will post a few of my favorite lines at the end of this post.

I was so enamored with this musical, that I wrote a few new songs of my own this week..and even went into the studio to do a little recording. I'm working on a song called, "ennui" It is french..I wrote i years ago.
This week, I once again fell in love with God's grace. So often, I feel unworthy. I am unworthy.
So often, I feel as if I fail. So often, I struggle with things like fasting, and discipline, and even witnessing. So often, I waste resources.. money, food, TIME.
I overeat.
I have a dreadful caffine addiction. I am flawed, and I get tears in my eyes everytime I hear that God actually loves me. I haven't made a video in weeks. I feel discouraged,and uncertain.
But today, I feel as if  God showed me that I can do nothing in my own strength. He loves us all, and He gives us the strength to be who He created us to be..and He gives us the strength to do the things that He has called us to do.
He gives us the strength to let go and what we need to "let go" of..
I think of the verse, "I can do all things through Christ Jesus who gives me strength.."
( on a side note, I once heard this verse misued by a famous preacher who said that God gives us the strength to be rich..) Really? I didn't know being rich required much strength. The hard part is giving up and letting God provide your least, that is my understanding of things.. Am I wrong?
Test it all against the Word.

This week, I was grateful for creativity. I started to condemn myself for working on music. It can get a little pricey...but I know that all that I have and all that I am..I long to give back to God. I know that is beautiful to have a vision. I can't imagine the world without the Les Miserables..and the artists and composers who gave their all to a vision of a better world. I think of the verse, "without a vison, the people perish, and I hear God whispering..."For you have been called to freedom, not freedom to fall back into you sinful natures, but to serve one another in love..
All I know is that freedom can come in the form of music. It comes in using talent to love on others and bring smiles and glory to God.
Freedom. Such a beautfiful word..and on my darkest days, this verse comes to mind..and I realize that I am free. There are no chains on this chic. 

This week, I wanted to have a footwashing. And then, I realized that it may be awkward to wash men's feet. So, instead I changed the "footwashing" event to a hot cocoa gathering. No one showed up. It was just as well because I realized that there was a rat in the house, and I would have been mortified if he had showed up and scared my guests. sigh.
I am determined to use my tiny little abode for the good and the glory of Christ..I'm just not one hundred percent sure how to do it yet..

This week I learned about Gospel for Asia. ( I learned that there are people there die for their faith. I have learned that there are thousands of people die all around the world, because they belive in something great...because they profess to be a Christian.
I read about the enormous waste in our country. It's saddening to see the numbers. It still amazes me that we spend billions of dollars on churches..(mulitmillion dollar structures in some cases) and the world goes hungry and the people down the street..or even in Mexico ( our neighboring country) are without blankets and electricity. My mom went on a trip to a tiny village in Mexico and said families live in such poverty that our minds can't even comprehend.  Sometimes, people accuse me of wanting to change the world.. Guess what?
I do. These kinds of things make me sad, and I think that if Christians would unite and quit our arguing and pettiness..then, we could really make the world look a little like it was intended...
For now, I write..I pray..and I will ask God how to make better use of my time, my talent, my resources.. what will bring Him the most  glory...

anyhow, that is enough for tonight. I'll try to write again soon.
Love you

" to love another person is to see the face of God" - Les Miserables

Hmm..i just had an interesting thought..I scheduled my "footwashing" so that I could practice hospitality...but. how often do we miss the chance to practice that kind of love and kindness every day? Why do we need special occasions, or events, to show people that we care. It should be lived out all that we are and in all that we do..When we inhale Christ, we exhale something beautiful and vibrant that is contagious. Love makes good things grow.
Yesterday, God gave me a verse.."be kind to one another, forgiving one another, even as Christ forgave you." Isn't that something basic? That verse is so simple and so basic, and yet, it's implications and it's effects could literally change life on earth as we know it. Be kind. Forgive. Christ forgives you. If we all, took this to heart..then we would see great things. Acts of kindness are so rare these days, that when they happen,..they often make the news. Let's live this out daily. Seeking no fanfare or attention..
Another thought...Is the reason we can't grasp this verse or even adhere to it...because we are blind? Didn't God say that many would be deceived and blinded? We cater so much to our flesh that it is impossible to see and do what the Holy Spirit wants. And even though God loves us, are we really being all we can be for Him..Are we letting Him have His way fully in our lives?
Am I?
The other day I was thinking about what it really means to follow in the footsteps of Jesus..It means going where He went. It means witnessing. It means being willing to walk in the desert. It means being willing to show love and grace to everyone..It means telling others when they are wrong..
anyhow, got to go..


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