Tag Archives: Ramblings

What if life were more like theatre?

I’ve found my voice again.  It took a little 2 year old who loves music and wants to sing everything but I sing my way through life again and I love it.  As such I was extremely entertained by the opening of the Tony Awards Ceremony this year.

What if life were more like theatre?

I would love that intermission when life places you in precarious situations and perhaps the ability to call in that understudy.  What about you?

Are you sure about that?

People are generally nice to you when you’re doing Pulpit Supply.  You come in and they’re polite, they hand you a cheque and then you leave after doing my thing. Because I’ve been doing some places quite regularly people think they know me.

In some ways they’re right, they do know me.  I come in and do the service and quite often stay for coffee.  They say they like my energy and enthusiasm for the future.  They say they are excited when I say there is hope.  They love my little boy as he brings life to the party.  It’s like our family is the poster child for the family they want to attract.

It sounds nice, right?  It is.  I appreciate that they don’t hate me.  The thing is I’m not really sure how they would feel if I were actually their minister.  I have energy and hope for the future but I know how much work is required to make the future happen.  I believe that great things are possible but they require faith, work and dedication.  I believe in listening to God and changing what isn’t working.  If I were actually their minister I would expect things.  I’m not sure they would like it if they had someone expecting things.

Isn’t this always the way?  We love listening to people on TV.  We love when our politicians speak about great change and new ideas.  We delight in gurus telling us our lives can be different.  But when push comes to shove we don’t want to change.  Usually we like things just the way they are.

I don’t like things the way they are.  I’m unsettled and uncomfortable with the road we’re walking.  Right now I have the ability to speak the truth about how I feel without worrying about a job.  It’s freeing.

I like this but I do wonder how people would react if they were stuck with me full time.  Would people continue to like me?  I suspect some would and some wouldn’t and I’m actually ok with that.

Worrying gets us nowhere.

I feel like I write about this all the time but it seems like all we do as a Church is worry and let’s face it, worrying gets us nowhere.

Think about it.  When in your life has worry actually accomplished anything?  In my life worrying never accomplishes anything.  I can worry all I want but worry doesn’t change the outcome.  All worrying does is cause anxiety and waste energy.
When the Church worries the same thing is true.

The Church right now is living in a state of anxiety and we are wasting energy discussing and debating all of our worries for the future.  Sinking into the worry and allowing it to consume us has not propelled us forward.  It has prevented us from visioning or making plans because we are worried of what might happen and we’re not focused on what is happening.

In my reading this morning I ran across this statement in 1 Chronicles 28:20, where David tells his son Solomon not to worry but instead to “…Be strong and of good courage, and act.  Do not be afraid or dismayed; for the Lord my God is with you…”  What I loved about this was that David reminds Solomon to act.  Not to get caught up in other things but to be strong, of good courage and act.  When we worry we fail to act.  When we worry we think about what might happen but we don’t act in the present.

It’s time to act.  To be the Church.  To stop worrying about the future and start thinking about the present.   It’s a tough time to be the Church.  Decisions need to be made.  Choices are going to be difficult.  Things must change.  All of that is hard to do but worrying about outcomes and wondering what’s going to happen doesn’t make it any less necessary.

I know it’s difficult.  We really don’t know where we are going but we aren’t the first people to have no clue what lay ahead.  The Israelites had to trust that God would lead them.  The Apostles waited in faith for the Holy Spirit to arrive.  Countless others have waited on God and now it’s our turn.  We are in a time of transition but as David reminded his son when he passed the torch “…the Lord my God is with you…”.  We aren’t alone in this.  God is with us.

When we give in to worry we cease relying on God.  We must have faith.  We have to trust that God is leading us somewhere.

Worrying gets us nowhere.

As David reminded Solomon, God is with us and we must act.
God is indeed with us. Are you ready for action?
How are you going to let go of worry?

Random Thought Thursday: May 17 Edition

It’s been a while!  Here’s a little of what I’ve been up to:

First of all reading the Bible in the style of a novel instead of through study guides or daily reading sheets has been fascinating.  Little parts I’ve always glossed over have more meaning.  Running into old friends {like Elijah} has been incredibly interesting as I’ve just recently read all that came before so it’s fresh and vivid and his message is quite powerful.  I’m really glad I began this exercise as it has brought the scriptures to life in a new way for me.

Stemming from all this reading I have to say I’m thrilled to not be a prophet back in the day.  Being a prophet was hard.  Ministry is hard enough but having to call an entire people to account would be a nightmare.  Glad I’m just Becky at this moment in time.

Life at home has been pretty quiet.  X. has tons of new words and is always on the go.  I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen and embracing all the fresh spring produce I can find.  I cashed in my air miles for a new waffle iron so I anticipate a  a great waffle adventure is in my future.

I’ve been quiet over the last week as I’ve been taking some time to mull things over and debate what it is God wants from me.  After receiving some wise counsel last night after Presbytery I think I have a better idea on what I should be doing.  I’m grateful for the advice and prayer of friends.  It’s so helpful!

Well that’s it for me but that’s not all.  I’d love to know what’s going on with you.

How have you been?

{insert title here}

I am terrible at writing blog titles.  I stink at this particular part of the job.
Coincidentally {or not so coincidentally} I am also terrible at sermon titles.  I’m not one for witty catch phrases or smart twists of words.

If I ever write a book it will no doubt have a terrible working title and the real title will be ripped from my brain through a terrifying process of torture and deadline demands.  I think this alone might deter me from starting this process…

Where are the quiet waters?

If Psalm 23 had been written by the mother of a 2 year old who also happened to be a minister on a journey towards a more disciplined prayer life it might begin a little something like this:

The Lord is my Shepherd.  I’m well cared for and have all that I need except sleep. Sleep would be good God.  Sleep would be good.

I am a tired, tired soul.  This past week has been rough sleep wise.  I’ve been up at 3 more times then I care to admit.  Twice my son decided it was morning and another time I awoke with a brilliant idea for the blog that was gone as soon as I fell back asleep.  I really should sleep with a journal and pen for moments like that.  I’ve been getting up earlier and earlier.  This morning I was up at 5:45.  It has been suggested that God wants more time with me.  I would have thought that 5:45 was too early even for God, apparently I was wrong.

The Lord is my Shepherd.  He’s supposed to be leading me to rest by quiet waters, isn’t he?  Maybe that’s just for David…

I have next week off from preaching.  I hope to sleep, play, read, write and embrace all that extra time brings.  I am looking forward to more time.  Just time to do what ever comes forth.  It should be good for my soul.  Maybe I’ll find those quiet waters.

If God dropped by.

There is a tree in my front yard that is absolutely beautiful.  It flowers in the spring.  Has lots of full green leaves in the summer.  In the fall it turns color and begins to change into the stark stoic tree of winter.   Around dusk, when the light turns just the right shade, when the wind is blowing at just the right speed and the sun is at just the right height in the sky, it looks like it’s on fire.

The first time it happened I actually went out to examine the tree.  I knew it wasn’t on fire but it looked so strange and otherworldly.  It was quite the effect.  It’s happened a few times since and I enjoy the beauty that happens during that  exact mix of time, light and sun.  It’s quite a sight to behold.

When it happens I wonder how Moses felt when God made huge public displays of his presence.  My little light trick pales in comparison to the living, breathing God stepping into your presence by lighting a bush on fire or appearing as a swirling cloud.  Would Moses and the Israelites have taken these signs for granted?  Did they just get used to God’s big, bold appearances?

I wonder why those things don’t happen now.  Do they happen and we just don’t see them?  There are so many times I look back on a situation and realize how present God was with me but I missed it at the time.

Do you think God gets missed in the every day?  Would we even notice a burning bush these days?

Sometimes I wonder what would happen if God dropped by…

VBS.

VBS affects kids.  You might think it’s just something for kids to do but it affects them. How do I know this? Right now in my head a song from VBS when I was around 10-11 is in my head.  It’s goes like this:

Good morning Lord.  It’s a beautiful day.
Good morning Lord.  I’m going your way.
Open my eyes and let me see someone who needs a friend like me.
I know that I can surely be loving, caring always sharing.
Good morning Lord.  It’s a beautiful day.
Good morning Lord.  I’m going your way.

I can remember the gatherings we had that year and the friends I found.
I remember the fun I had helping lead the little ones to their activities.
I remember feeling important and yet still having a good time.
It was a transitional year for me.  I was crossing over from participant to helper.
I remember it.  It lives in me even now.  It is a great memory.

I have no idea why this song is in my head today but it did make me wonder.  What will our kids remember 20 years from now about church?  Will their memories be as full as mine?  I sincerely hope so.

Random Ramblings…

I’ve been drafted for duty and am now working on Easter Sunday.  This looks to be a rather busy week.  Still not exactly sure what I’m going to say but I would bet it will have something to do with the Resurrection.  Seems fitting.
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Dinosaur Train has taken over my life.  I read books about dinosaurs.  I watch an episode daily with my son.  We roar like T-Rexes.  I’m loving it.  I love being the mother of a boy.  This is allowing me to delve into the realm of dinosaurs at my age without anyone {besides you guys of course} knowing my fascination with them.  There are so many more dinosaurs now then when I was young.

Here’s a particularly entertaining song from the series:

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There have been some abstract, vague thoughts floating around in my head about beginning a worship gathering separate from the usual Sunday experience.  I’m not ready to commit yet but I’m thinking about it.  It may never happen but the thoughts are in there.
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Fringe is new tonight.  Watch it.  Love it.  I do.

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What do Words with Friends, blogging, surfing the web, Bejeweled, and Pawn Stars all have in common?  They are perfect tools for procrastinating.  I need to unplug my PVR, disconnect my modem and get to work.  I’m completely undisciplined today.  I’d better get back to work…
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Landslide

I have a lot of friends who write blogs.  I would say 99% of them are about their personal lives with a hint of Jesus but there are some that are more specific in their direction.

One of my friends recently started a blog called “The Next 500 Years” and his first post {which you should check out} is a bit of an introduction to where he’s going to go with the blog.  He talks about this time of transition in the church as being like the moment when you are at the top of the roller coaster and about to launch down into that giant dip.  It’s the moment when you are absolutely terrified {even if you know what’s coming}.

I like the roller coaster imagery but for me I see it as more of a landslide.  An event that is years in the making, waiting for that one thing which will send everything sliding down the mountain.  No one knows what will happen.  No one knows what it will look like once the event is over.  There is only one guarantee, change is coming and things will never look the same again.

I love the Dixie Chicks rendition of the Fleetwood Mac hit “Landslide”.  It’s something I listen to often and there is one line of lyrics that particularly hits me with regards to life, transition and inevitable change.

“Well I’ve been afraid of changing ’cause I built my life around you”

Sometimes I wonder if we {as Christians} have focused and built around the church buildings instead of Jesus.  Maybe that’s why we’re so scared of changing because we’ve been focused on the wrong thing.

Whether we’re at the top of a roller coaster or sitting on the side of a cliff that’s just about to let go, change is coming.  We might not like it.  We might not want it.  But it’s coming.  I’m looking forward to seeing what the change will bring.