Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Got Wisdom?

James 3:17 (The Message)
Real wisdom, God's wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.

Friday, May 14, 2010

What we are to be about? or Being a Christ-Follower

"The reason I bring this up is to plead with evangelicals to return to the sort of call Christ has given us, to obey Him and experience intimacy with Him through sharing our faith, loving our enemies, serving and feeding the poor and hungry directly, and to stop showing off about how moral we are and how that makes us better than other people." - Donald Miller, Searching for God Knows What

"The Word became flesh and blood,
and moved into the neighborhood.

- John 1:14, The Message

Living Loved, Hello!

"Imagine how much a man's life would be changed if he trusted that he was loved by God? He could interact with the poor and not show partiality, he could love his wife easily and expect her to redeem him, he would be slow to anger because redemption was no longer at stake, he could be wise and giving with his money because money no longer represented points, he could give up on formulaic religion, knowing that checking stuff off a spiritual to-do list was a worthwhile pursuit, he would have confidence and the ability to laugh at himself, and he could love people without expecting anything in return. it would be quite beautiful, really." - Donald Miller, Searching for God Knows What

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Al? Bert? Albert? ~ No, Steve!

Several of us have seen the homeless man that hangs around Albertson's on Texas street but no one was able to connect with him until recently. Marion saw him one day while helping Pam and actually said "hello" (first contact)! It was intentional not to be too forward and engage in conversation; just be a friendly blessing. A small dilemma arose from this encounter however; "how do I refer to him, I don't know his name"? A call to Jim would resolve the problem, he's got a name for everyone : >) After a short discussion, three names were readily apparent - Al, Bert, or Albert in lieu of an actual name that he normally uses (Al or Albert would suffice for now). A few days later, another opportunity arose and Marion gave "Albert" a ham sandwich and water that she happened to have extra (what are the odds of that). "Hi, would you like something to eat and a water?" Al said "Yes mam - thank you". Marion replied with "Your welcome, have a nice day". Not again! She still didn't get his name. Today was the third time to be the blessing. This time, as Marion said hello and handed him some food and his favorite drink (red Powerade), I said "Hi, I'm Jeff" extending my hand toward him and he replied "I'm Steve".

Nice to meet you Steve!

Monday, May 3, 2010

What Difference Do It Make?

I keep considering something Lorie shared with me on Sunday morning. She is thinking about asking some members of the group to step out and spend a weekend with the gang under the bridge. I guess I just have questions about it. I'm not opposed to it, but I need to know why we are doing this. What is our motive in this adventure? What are we wanting to accomplish? What difference do it make? I ask these questions (and others) because I am not sure what my own motives would be. I would want to know I am going with a clear conscience, and a certain agenda (agendas bother me). I'm not sure I can do that at this point in my own personal journey. I know this sounds like the ramblings of a crazy man, but Hello!, it's me. Am I the only one struggling with this? Anyone else out there? I don't know what I am uncomfortable with. I do know I would not want to have any attention drawn to me if I do this. That is something which really bothers me (a lot). So, someone speak to me. Let's dialog about this. We are community after all. Does anyone else have thoughts on this? Please share!

- Struggling in the Spirit

"What's this? Fools out shopping for wisdom! They wouldn't recognize it if they saw it." - Proverbs 17:16 (The Message)

Not a Formula, but a Friendship

By releasing us from the terrible burden of trying to earn His friendship, God put the focus right where He wanted it - on the relationship He always wanted to have with each of us. He wants to be a closer friend than any other we've ever had; to share our joys, our pains, even our failures as He teaches us how to live in Him.

Daily, God wants us to discover more about Him and how He wants to be involved with us. This is an intensely personal process. Try as we might to standardize that relationship by offering a checklist of actions necessary to cultivate it, we will always fall short. No living relationship thrives through the use of a checklist because it is far more dynamic than any list can facilitate. God can be personal enough to develop this friendship with each of us as we invite Him to do so.

- Wayne Jacobsen, He Loves Me!

Relational Tithe

Weird ?