Wednesday, March 26, 2008

He's Alive

So, I had a whirlwind weekend in Dallas over Easter. Some of you might wonder, "She went out of town over Easter? Away from her family? On purpose?" The answer is yes. And there's a reason for that, other than the fact that my friends are just overly generous! A few weeks ago in our GIFT study we discussed the story where Jesus resurrected Lazarus.

Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again." Martha said to Him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day." Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. "And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?" She said to Him, "Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world."

( I want to make it clear that this is not my original thought, but Bro Teryls - I just got a really clear understanding of it recently.) The point Bro Teryl makes in the study is that Jesus was trying to get Martha to understand that The Resurrection is not necessarily an event but a person. Jesus Christ - The resurrection and the life - inside of us, living His life through us walking in the Spirit, walking in newness of life. In light of this, I got to thinking... Easter really doesn't make sense. To celebrate The Resurrection once a year - not to mention all the pointless and ridiculous traditions that surround it - is absurd. We should celebrate The Resurrection inside of ourselves every day if we're truly walking as He has called us to walk. The holiday no longer holds any value to me whatsoever. It's just another day, which is why I didn't think twice about being out of town... Even the Passover, which is generally celebrated in conjunction with the Pagan "Easter", shouldn't be a once a year celebration. Jesus instructed His disciples to break the bread in remembrance of Him - each time you do these things, do them in remembrance of Him. We "break bread" together every week as a part of our "love feast"!

That being said, I had a great time in fellowship with the brothers and sisters up in Texas. Gina in Mabank started off the meeting by singing this song for us - unacompanied! It was gorgeous!!

The gates and doors were barred and all the windows fastened down; I spent
the night in sleeplessness and rose at every sound, Half in hopeless sorrow and
half in fear the day, Would find the soldiers breakin' thru to drag us all away

And just before the sunrise I heard something at the wall, The gate began
to rattle and a voice began to call; I hurried to the window and looked down
into the street, Expecting swords and torches and the sounds of soldier's feet

There was no one there but Mary so I went down to let her in; John stood
there beside me as she'd told us where she'd been. She said "They moved Him in
the night and none of us knows where; The stone's been rolled away and now His
body isn't there!"

We both ran t'ward the garden, then John ran on ahead; We found the stone
and empty tomb just the way that Mary said. But the winding sheet they wrapped
Him in was just an empty shell; And who or where they'd taken Him was more than
I could tell.

Well, something strange had happened there, but just what I didn't know;
John believed a miracle but I just turned to go. Circumstance and speculation
couldn't lift me very high 'Cause I'd seen them crucify Him, then I saw Him die.

Back inside the house again the guilt and anguish came; Everything I'd
promised Him just added to my shame. When at last it came to choices, I denied I
knew His name; And even if He was alive, it wouldn't be the same

But suddenly the air was filled with a strange and sweet perfume; Light
that came from everywhere drove shadows from the room. Jesus stood before me
with His arms held open wide; And I fell down on my knees, and just clung to Him
and cried.

He raised me to my feet and as I looked into His eyes, Love was shining
out from Him like sunlight in the skies, Guilt in my confusion disappeared in
sweet release, And every fear I'd ever had just melted into peace

CHORUS He's alive! He's alive, He's alive and I'm forgiven! Heaven's
gates are open wide: He's alive, He's alive, oh He's alive and I'm forgiven
Heaven's gates are open wide He's alive, He's alive, hallelujah He's alive

I found out later that this is actually a country song. All I could think about the entire time I listened was "Lord, Help my unbelief!!" Leonard Ravenhill says all the time that the resurrection morning must've been one of the most dissapointing days of Jesus life. How many times did He teach His disciples that He would be raised?? And He found them cowering in a little room above someones house in despair.. The thing that sticks out to me most right now about that situation is that the disciples didn't stay there. They didn't continue to hide in shame for what they'd done - they got out into the city and spread the word. They did something!!

Lord help my unbelief and show me what you want me to DO!

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Martyrs Prayer

This is a good reminder I think. And just good to listen to if you haven't heard it before..

Disclaimer: I am not a supporter of GodTube, at all! I think that's just about the dumbest idea anyone's ever had.... but YouTube wouldn't let me post it and it was in 2 pieces on YouTube anyway.. So yeah..

Sunday, March 09, 2008

I Miss Real Blogging... Still.

I just spent the last 10 minutes looking over the past year or two of Laurens blog trying to find a quote she'd put up there from The Martyrs Prayer that is no longer there. At least I would swear it was her.. for some reason it's not there. Anyway.. It just made me ache. Somewhere deep inside me. A little pang remembering the innocence of youth.... Okay so maybe you all know I like to dramaticize things a bit too much. Haha.. It's just.. wow.. where are the days where we all actually had time for these things?? When did we get so busy that we just let it go? When did I get so careful that I couldn't even just stop by to pour out a few thoughts and ponderings for my friends to wonder with me on? Does that even make sense? When did I make this rule that everything I put on here has to be well thought out and planned and there has to be hours of contemplation and notes on it?? I've had this Keith Green song on my heart all week long.. did I put it on here? No. Why not? Why can't I just stop here for a few minutes?

You know what the problem really is though... I miss fellowship. And I'm not saying that Sunday morning's at Bob's isn't fellowship! This Sunday was GREAT! Time spent in communion with the Lord together is so refreshing. Those moments of content silence... everyone's bellies full on one of my favorite meals... It was wonderful! But I miss that spontaneous fellowship that we used to have all the time. Anywhere, anytime, whether on the phone, or across an invisible internet connection, or in the grocery store, or what-ever! I guess a big part of that is my fault. It's my responsibility to my brothers and sisters in the Lord to make that happen. I miss you guys. Amber, Holly, Jamie, even Lauren, Penny, Kandi, Nan, the Jacksons entire Home Church, Deanna to name a few... And I don't even think half of you read this but I want you to know that I'm thinking of you. And you still hold a very special place in my heart.... I don't know why I'm even writing this. I guess as a challenge to myself to MAKE it happen this week. To really sow some time and effort into rebuilding relationships that I've let fall to the wayside. To put aside my own agenda and really show my friends that I love them. We talked about it this morning.. laying down your life for your friend.. I don't think I get it. It's not just being willing to jump in front of a train for someone, but actually putting aside your own life and investing in theirs. I want to know the things that God is showing y'all. I want you to know what the Lord is doing in me!! I miss that constant witness of the spirit that builds my faith so much!!

So it's not really the blogging that I miss as much as the people - the involvement in each others lives. I'm resolving here and now to change that.

FYI this is the first post I'm making from me and Jordans new computer!!!