Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Kids

I love kids. Well, most of them anyway. Something about those little guys. Their minds are so ripe for information and whose bodies are so full of energy. I'm mentioning them because starting tomorrow I will be working with the Kindergarten and First Grade Kids of Waters Edge every Sunday. It's exciting, but also challenging. Some kids are ready and willing for any teachings you may have for them. Some are amazed by the Bible stories that are being taught. And even others who come away learning the principles we're trying to instill in their little heads. But of course there are others who just want to play, have their way, and do everything but listen to you. But it's amazing to me to see kids who want to be at church.
This age is also very important to me for another reason: I was saved when I was 5, in Kindergarten. And to be a part of someone's life during a period of time when they make that ultimate jump is something I greatly desire. I want to impact the kid's lives. I want parents coming up to me and saying: "My kid's acting different." or "My kid wants to know more about the Bible." or "My kid can't wait to get to church."
I've told this story to a number of friends but it's worth telling again here. My choice to work with Kindergarten kids at Waters Edge came in great part due to this story. For many weeks I had been working part time with the Wee Worlders, our preschoolers. Just helping out , holding babies, giving them snack, etc. Then I was asked to help out in the Kindergarten class because the church needed my help. So of course I said I would. So every other week I would work with the Kindergarten kids. I loved it. I enjoyed it. But I must confess that I felt like I was doing this to help the church, not helping the kids. Oh, was I mistaken. It wasn't long after I started that one of the girls from the class ran up to me and gave me a hug. Now, I'm not the teacher of this class, I did very little storytelling. I was just there to help out. But this girl touched my heart and made me realize that I was making a difference with what little I gave of my time and energy. So naturally, I decided to dive into this thing and now I'm working with kindergarten and first grade kids full time.

I can't wait to see what happens tomorrow.

My First Love

I'm falling in love again with the one who first loved me.
My mind can't understand what He sees in little old me.
But compared to the things of this earth,
The things that are temporary
He is so much more than my human eyes can see.

Love so unfailing
Love so amazing
Love so indescribable.
Love that stretches to the highest height
and to the lowest depths of the sea.

I've missed you
I need you
to fill me again
Come and take my heart
Purify me once again.

I've traded you in for the loves of the earth.
But I'm coming back because you're worth
More to me than anything that I've ever seen
and my soul longs for you because you mean
so much to me
you mean so much to me.

Lord I long for your embrace
I want to see your face.
Come meet me in this place
Once again.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Shine

I've taken up rereading through the gospels because I have recently made the decision to listen closely to God, to meditate more in His word, and to obey what He has for my life. Lately, the word "shine" has been on mind a lot lately. And when I read in Matthew 5 yesterday, the purpose that God has been hammering into my skull became crystal clear yet again. "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Shine your light before all men that they might see your good works and praise your Father in heaven." 2 things instantly popped into my head the moment I read this.

1. Why am I hiding?
2. To whom am I shining?

I often complain about the church's lack of shining. And yesterday I wondered why Jesus said that "a city on a hill cannot be hidden". What was being hidden? What was the city on a hill representing? Could it be that Jesus was seeing what I'm seeing? A lack of shining? A church that is not shining in the world, but hiding? And of course when I complain it often reflects me. And then I started thinking, "Well, am I shining?" "How am I living my life to shine?" "What am I doing to shine?"

I looked up the word shine and there are a lot of definitions but I think 2 apply here.

1.to give forth or glow with light; shed or cast light.
2.to be bright with reflected light; glisten; sparkle.

The first is how God shines in us, how His glory and love and mercy is cast on us. The second of course is our shine. The only reason we shine is because it is reflected from God. And when we shine on others it is easy to think that our light shines to them, but really it is merely God's light reflected on us that shines to them. Don't miss this. When we take control of shining and do it for our benefit merely to make ourselves look better, we're not really shining at all. Instead, we are attempting to steal the glory from God. But God's going to get the glory anyway so why not just go along with it?

So people of God, bride of Christ, the Church, may you shine like the stars in the universe, reflecting the light of the light-maker for all to see that they may, in turn, reflect the light of God to others and light up the world for the glory of God.