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July 7, 2005

Last night our Wednesday night class was in limbo. Our previous teacher is out of town and decided he was finished with his series so last week I filled in. This week we had no one lined up so at 5:30 me and a friend in the class decided that we would have some discussion and if it went bad we would sing. Yes I know they deserve better.

We read James chapter one and I talked a little about verse 22. About being doers of the word and not just hearers. We discussed what the word authentic means. I then asked the question: What is something you have learned from God in the last month or year that you are trying to practice in your life?

We had a visitor last week when I did movie clips based on John Eldridge’s EPIC. She afterwards told someone, “This church is cool, you get to watch movies”. Boy talk about perspective. I would think of 10,000 words to describe our congregation and not come up with “cool”.

She was back last night with her “prayer partner” (I know this because she told us) and her prayer partners boyfriend. She was the first to answer all my questions. To the what are putting into practice question she said, “I am practicing abstinence. I have tried to stop having SEX! Ha, Ha. It’s HARD, let me tell you.” At this point everyone in the room has this look as they smile at her, What did she just say?. She went on to say,”I just have to tell myself I am practicing abstinence. Because when I say I am not having sex that don’t work. Sometimes you get this feeling or urge. Its hard.”

Everyone then slowly turned to me….(I am thinking they are wondering what I am going to say) I tell yes, it is difficult, thank you for sharing that, what about somebody else.

Now in your world that may not be odd. But in mine, people don’t usually come out that honest. We went on to discuss that our faith seems authentic when we love like God loves. I said that to someone on the outside, they don’t care what songs we sing or version of the Bible we use, at least not at first. What they are looking for is love.

So, what have you learned in the last month/year that you are trying to apply?

7 Comments leave one →
  1. July 7, 2005 12:54 pm

    Great discussion! It would have been great to have been their. I would have said, “Yes, before Phyllis and I got married, it was very difficult to abstain from having sex. Especially for me! Because of our committment to God and one another, we abstained, and I am so glad we did! Sex is so incredible! I often pray after we have had sex and thank God for this incredible gift.”

    At least that is what I would have liked to say 🙂

  2. July 7, 2005 1:10 pm

    Wow! What a challenge! Someone being open and honest and REAL! I don’t know how I would have handled it in mixed company either!

    I have tried in the last year to get to know people who are different from me. I don’t mean a lot different, just people that I wouldn’t normally take the time to get to know. I have found some interesting friends this way. I think the principal is that God loves us all, why can’t we “accept” each other?

  3. July 8, 2005 6:27 am

    With that one honest comment, suddenly everyone in the room got a fake expression on their faces to mask the true responses in their minds. lolol I love it!

    I have been studying the subject of PEACE… and trying not just to find peace of heart, but to live peacefully within myself.

  4. July 8, 2005 11:55 am

    I just taught a class at camp called “The Jesus Experiment.” I learned that even though I “call” myself a Christian, I look nothing like Him!
    So, right now I am in the process of examining what Christ did everyday, and trying to find some people (a la 12 disciples) to walk with me in this journey.

  5. July 8, 2005 12:47 pm

    You can guess what I’ve HAD to learn and have worked very hard at trying to apply in my life in the past year and a half and even more so in the last three months. Patience. I’ve blogged about how I already considered myself a very patient person, but I’ve found even new levels of patience, and actually a lot of the peace in my life that JD is working on for his life.

    Another thing I’ve had to really learn and have been trying to apply in the past two or three years, which may surprise you, is that I’m not a worthless person because I’ve become so incapcitated and incapable of being out following a profession, being looked up to as a competent professional person able to earn money and help a lot of people with complex problems, etc.

    I could go on and on about the overwhelming feelings of worthlessness I’ve had at time, even before God. I think a large part of the problem is that our society puts high worth on busy, productive, working professional people and a very low value on people who are disabled and poor and not contributing in a monetary way or in any other “tangible” societal way, as this society is set up.

    I’ve had to really fight those feelings, myself, about myself and to try to look at myself from God’s perspective and not man’s. Tom and my son, Mark, in particular,have helped me to overcome those feelings and to learn to NOT feel that way, no matter what. And, they have been tremendous blessings to me in doing so.

    We all have a lot to learn in our lives as we go through them and the lessons and applications keep changing from stage to stage of our lives. All I can say from this stage is that I’m glad I made it through all of the past stages in one piece and happy and semi-healthy (enough for the moment).

    I don’t know what all lies ahead and am probably glad that I don’t! But, whatever may come, I KNOW that God will keep me safe through it and bring me out on the other side a wiser, happier person with nothing but good ahead in the end. That’s pretty cool!

  6. July 21, 2005 4:31 pm

    I’ve been learning to be me. That sounds so simplistic I know, but it is the very toughest thing I’ve ever had to do.

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