Flair for the Dramatic…

I have always had a flair for the dramatic. In fact, growing up my mom often referred to me as Sarah Bernhardt.

The first time I got sick after my man and I were married, I asked him to set me up on the couch. I needed lots of pillows, blankets and and of course my TV tray close by with kleenex, my drink, saltine crackers, remote control and anything I might possible need within easy reach. He thought that I was all set and was about to leave the room when I asked him where my bell was. You see, my mom would put a bell close by for me to ring if I needed something when I was sick. True story. I’ll just say it for you, SPOILED. The look on my man’s face was priceless.

My best friend came to class today at the gym after being out for a couple of weeks. She passed kidney stones last week and has been in a lot of pain. I told the class that if I passed kidney stones last week that I would probably take maternity leave for my recovery. Yes, I have a natural flair for the dramatic.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how much those early Christians suffered and were persecuted for following Jesus. “For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better.”
(Phillipines 1:21 NLT). This profound revelation from God could only come from deep relationship with our Savior. Jesus was the example of courage that those early Christians relied on to do His work against unbelievable odds. They relied on the power of the Holy Spirit to do miraculous things, stand up against enormous fear and continue to cling to the message of hope and love in the midst of horrific persecution.

Think about how differently and more boldly we would live for Christ if we fathomed that His very Spirit fills us, moves us and gives us all the fruit we need to proclaim Jesus in this broken world. The very “I Am” fills us with His power. He sets us apart to do mighty work for Him and He gives us the tools we need to accomplish the task. I am because of the great I AM.

Am I willing to live every day so boldly that I might venture out of my comfort zone? Am I willing to go where God leads me even if that road is unfamiliar? Am I willing to serve in ways that are uncomfortable and out of my normal ministry areas?

I think it is time for me to put my flair for the dramatic to good use for Christ. Go big or go home folks.

Be joyful!

For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. But if I live, I can do more fruitful work for Christ. So I really don’t know which is better. I’m torn between two desires: I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me. But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live. Philippians 1:20‭, ‬22‭-‬24 NLT

Mine, Mine, Mine!

pixsharkimage
Image from pixshark.com

When my mom brought me home from the hospital, my brother met us at the car, exclaiming “my baby, my baby, my baby.” (He was an extremely intelligent boy and knew greatness when he saw it. 🙂 ) I carried my “blankee” for much longer than I will ever admit and it was definitely my property and mine alone. Try and take food away from my daughter and see what happens to you. How often have we witnessed children grab a toy away from someone else’s hands all the while exclaiming, “mine”?

We sure do like to lay claim to our possessions, don’t we? I have noticed a pattern developing culturally that seems similar. More and more often, I hear people refer to their own “truth” or they might comment about another person saying something like, “that’s her truth.” I hear things like, “do you girl” or “look at what I made” when it comes to our children. I recently used hash tags under a picture of my own daughter laying claim to her softball status: #lovemynumber6 and #thatsmygirl. I know, you are probably thinking that these are innocent claims that come from an innocuous place. But, I think that they might speak to a larger issue that comes from our self-absorbed, self obsessed nature or as my Pastor likes to say, “Me-ville.”

Jesus answered, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6). Jesus also said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32) We see God say to Moses in Exodus 3:14, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.'” It seems to me that we need to be very careful when it comes to “truth” and laying claim. The only truth that stands firm in this world is Jesus. It is not my truth or your truth, it is His Truth. And the truth of the matter is that anything good or right or fair that flows from our lives is simply a reflection of God working through us. Further, any possession or gift or talent that we lay claim to was entrusted to us by our Father. This includes our children.

Thank God that He shouted, “mine, mine, mine” and sent His Son to save us. Thank God that Jesus shouted, “mine, mine, mine” when He gave up his last breath and conquered death, rising victorious for us. Thank God that His Holy Spirit shouts, “mine, mine, mine” as His very life pours into our very being. Glory Father, your truth is everything! You must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. (John 3:30 NLT)

So, this weekend, I dare you to claim “His Truth” in your life and instead of “doing you”, let’s “do God”. He is the only Truth that matters.

Be joyful!

If you start thinking to yourselves, “I did all this. And all be myself. I’m rich. It’s all mine!”–well, think again. Remember that God, your God, gave you the strength to produce all this wealth so as to confirm the covenant that he promised to your ancestors–as it is today. Deuteronomy 8:17-18 MSG