Thursday, October 27, 2005

90%

Numbers have never been my forte. I don’t particularly like them – even when they don’t deal with percentages! I used to hate numbers; after reading Dr. Joseph LeDoux’s, The Emotional Brain I came away exchanging my negative outlook for a more positive and richer view point. Not to say I like numbers, but I at least don’t have that clammy hand feel, eyes going blank, and hair standing on end when standing at the cash register, wanting to write a check for over the amount anymore! Giggle.

But this 90% thing has been a buggabear! I know that God has a reason for all things that He does in our lives. But this amount has loomed in the offing for quite a while. I have caught site of it several times during my journey to get on the field – but, it has always alluded me.

You see, at 90% I can begin to look at actually moving to Europe – at 90% I can finalize the plans. I can do this at 90% -- but, oh there is one more thing that has to happen…
I have to have an outgoing fund raised in total!

I am praying that this outgoing sum comes in quickly. You see, I opened my appointee roster tonight. For the first time in the monthly earned column under my name it didn’t have 15%, 50%, 75%, 78% or even 82%.

That nine and that zero lay snuggled by that percentage sign – and I copied it off for posterity!

Mutating missionary

Monday, October 17, 2005

cellophane -

I have had God wrapping me in cellophane = cel·lo·phane = a thin, transparent waterproof material made from wood pulp and used for wrapping and covering.

OK maybe he hasn’t been wrapping me in the kind of cellophane defined in the dictionary – but it has certainly felt like I was being wrapped in cellophane!

First, I have been squished. You know how you place the cellophane on the bowl and you tighten it over the lip of the bowl. You slip your fingers around it and slid your thumb under the edge (giving it that ‘just right’ touch) to seal in the freshness! Granted, it hasn’t felt like He was sealing in the freshness, instead – it has felt like He was digging deeper to remove any grout from around the edges!!!!!

Second, I have been probed. Remember when you stop just before you put the bowl in the fridge and you touch the top of the cellophane to see if it is still sealed? Yep, that is God with me of late! He has probed my motives. He has searched my heart. I am in His clear view. I am open and exposed. I am sealed in HIM and can handle the prodding only because of that.

Third, I am overwhelmed with my weeping. As you take that bowl out of the fridge, and stick it in the microwave to re-heat, the moisture collects on the top of the cellophane – even if you slice it slightly; it collects. I am weeping. Weeping in the car. Weeping in the shower. Weeping while cooking dinner. Weeping before dear female firefighters come over to be mentored. Weeping during the worship service. Weeping during the teaching. Weeping before meetings. Weeping. It should be embarrassing, but not really. Why?

Why am I weeping?

God has asked me to check my motives for going to Europe.
My motive? To teach ‘how to teach inductive bible studies’ to believers that would like to share with others about who God is.

Perhaps. But, I think that God has wrapped me up tightly in the last few weeks. Tightly enough that I have questioned and come away knowing that I am still called…

My motive? To serve. I desire to serve, my boss, the women of GEM, the women of Europe, the women of greater Europe. I desire to serve. I know that I am serving right where I am. But my heart aches for those that don’t have a Bible study on every corner; those that don’t have a church on every street; those that don’t know Him. Those that are empty, void, attempting to seek so many other things to replace the One and Only God that seeks them. I pray that He will allow me to be used.

I don’t bring perfection. Just a steamed bowl of me! Broken, poked, prodded. Loving Him more than family, friends, church – I desire to serve.

mutating missionary
rred

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

What more needs to be said tonight?

1Peter 4:8-17
To sum up, let all be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; not returning evil for evil, or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing. For Let Him who means to love life and see good days refrain his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking guile, and let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous and his ears attend to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil. And who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong.

Friday, October 7, 2005

Preconceived Ideas

Our culture – or should I say the Human Culture struggles with preconceived ideas. We have preconceived ideas about the people we meet. We make huge assumptions about their personality, their likes, their dislikes, and even their doctrinal belief systems.

I am reminded of an opportunity I missed several years ago, because of a preconceived idea about me!

The Rocky Mountains beckoned me from my 'red chair' haven. They called to come, and I went. I settled into Denver for a few days visiting with my dear friends, and scheduled a day trip into the mountains with another friend that had moved to Denver from this area. Right before the day we were to travel over the pass, his car needed repairs. He called me the night before the planned event, “Well, I thought I was going to have to cancel out on you. I tried to find someone that would be able to lend me a car; I don’t know if you will be OK with this, I got a Jeep!”

“A Jeep? How fun!!!!!”

After a second of surprise he continued, “Yeah, the only other thing available was a friend’s motorcycle.”

Disappointment escaped my lips, “Oh, now that would have really been exciting. Traveling over the pass on a motorcycle! WOW!”

“What?” shock escaped his, “I would never have taken you for a motorcycle girl.”

We went in the Jeep and I was happy. We stopped and gathered water from springs, escaped into several hidden scenic spots, and I was even able to capture a wonderful pastel drawing of the sunset. Do I wish I could have experienced the same day sitting on a motorcycle! Dang Skippy! – I am a wild woman! Giggle ;-)

Pre-conceived ideas!

We come with pre-conceived ideas about God as well. We determine what He looks like, how He is, what He does, all by what WE think He looks like, acts like, IS like! We like to think that we can control who God is.

Without digging into His Word, we make assumptions. Or we find one or two scriptures, remove them from context, and determine who He is from those. Whole doctrines have been built on these pre-conceived ideas.

Now, the real purpose of this blog spot is a thought that crossed my mind in the wee hours of the dark comfort of the night. This thought was confirmed after I read Oswald Chambers this morning, so I thought I would share…

We even come with pre-conceived ideas of ourselves!!!!!

Now, what do I mean by that? We are reared by fallible parents, trained by less than perfect teachers, and chided by more than cynical peers in our formative years. We make assumptions about ‘who we are’ as people.

God desires to be our filter with which we see ourselves. He made us, knows our frame, our strong points, our weak points, our foibles -- as it were. By seeing us through His filter we have a better understanding of ourselves. Our gifts are designed by HIM. When we understand that we are transformed at the moment of our salvation we enter into the New Covenant that allows us to be who He designed us to be – getting rid of the tapes that roam through our heads of our own pre-conceived notion of who we are, is a life-long endeavor.

The Truth is, when we accept the free gift of salvation given us on the cross, God sees us completely whole and holy and we enter into relationship with Him! This is the Good News! He has come to Redeem the world. The problem with the world isn’t sin – it is the heredity of sin; the heredity of sin has been conquered for each and every one of us. The problem in the world is that we as individuals have not received the free gift that was offered at Golgotha, and those of us that have, still live like we haven’t!!!!

“Sin is a fundamental relationship; it is not wrong doing, it is wrong being, deliberate and emphatic independence of God. The Christian religion bases everything on the positive, radical nature of sin. Other religions deal with sins; the Bible alone deals with sin. The first thing Jesus Christ faced in men was the heredity of sin, and it is because we have ignored this in our presentation of the Gospel that the message of the Gospel has lost its sting and its blasting power.

The revelation of the Bible is not that Jesus Christ took upon Himself our fleshly sins, but that He took upon Himself the heredity of sin which no man can touch. God made His own Son to be sin that He might make the sinner a saint. All through the
Bible it is revealed that Our Lord bore the sin of the world by identification,
not by sympathy. He deliberately took upon His own shoulders, and bore in
His own Person, the whole massed sin of the human race – “He had made Him to be
sin for us, who knew no sin,” 2 Corinthians 5:21 and by so doing He put
the whole human race on the basis of Redemption. Jesus Christ
rehabilitated the human race; he put it back to where God designed it to be, and
anyone can enter into union with God on the ground of what Our Lord has done on
the Cross.

A man cannot redeem himself; Redemption is God’s “bit,” it is absolutely finished and complete; its reference to individual men is a question of their individual action. A distinction must always be made between the revelation of Redemption and the conscious experience of salvation in a man’s life.” – Oswald Chambers

Am I walking and talking in my own pre-conceived notion of who I am? Or, am I walking and talking as the woman that God made me to be! A saint, wholly cleansed, firmly planted, and amazingly gifted BY HIM! May GOD be glorified at this miracle that He has done.

I don’t know about you, but I want to learn more about that, I want these tapes of Redemption roaming around in my head!

May God Be Glorified in His Redemptive Power!

Because He IS the I AM, i am,
a mutating missionary