Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Too easy of a pun. Recently I've explored different thoughts about me being so far (mostly geographically) from my family. I worry that other people or even my family will perceive that as family not being important to me...or that they'll assume I don't have a tight-knit family unit or that there's some drama causing emotional distance as well. But that's not it at all. Everyone has to follow God's plan for THEIR own life. I would love to be closer to family, but that would be the only advantage to moving back to the south. I feel so much purpose in my place here (in Tacoma). I love being in the most unchurched state of the US. I love people hopefully catching a glimpse of Christ in me (somewhere amidst the chaos).

On a temporal note, I like my job. I like Washington state and what it has to offer. It's beautiful here. I like the temperate climate. Sure, I could live with a few less days of rain, but I can't complain since we get perfect summers. And how do you get over getting to see majesty like Rainier on a regular basis? Really?

On an eternal note, I have community here unlike any I've experienced in a long, long time. I can think of having it at Union and with my girls back in Memphis. It looked a little different in both instances, but so did I. I'm in legit koinonia with 6 girls who are passionately pursuing Christ and spurring me on continuously to do the same. I'm in discipleship with a lady who loves Jesus as her Shepherd and has been walking this Road for a while as a mother of 4 and the wife of a church planter. (P.S. She also lives a couple thousand miles from her large family as well, and we've talked about how hard it gets sometimes.) I have a church family who loves with everything they have. We're growing and wrestling with sin and fighting on in the process of sanctification like the Bride of Christ.

So I know I'm where God wants me. I guess I feel guilty sometimes for enjoying being here...which sounds silly. But I think we chalk up the Christian walk to this life-long struggle of daily martyrdom - and don't get me wrong, it is- , and in many ways dying to self and taking up the Cross daily is ALWAYS a struggle. My point is: I don't think I should be surprised that where God has me fits how He's made me. It makes sense that living in the fullness of His plan for me would bring joy. And hopefully more times than not, I can echo the Apostle Paul in saying the joy that comes from knowing Him IS greater than anything else in this world.

But let me end by saying how thankful I am to have family that support me in my pursuit of God and His plan for me. Every time I've asked my mom if it bothers her that I won't be moving back to Huntingdon to have the 3 bedroom home, the husband, and the 2.3 kids, she's never hesitated to reiterate that she wants God's best for me and for me to be happy- nothing less. It's empowering and encouraging. And for THAT, I'm eternally grateful.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Recent Ramblings...

So I don't have any earth-shattering updates on life or learning, but I wanted to post some of the quotes that have sharpened my perception in the past few months.
We are not products of: gene pools, our impulses, our society, or our past. -sermon from Pastor Jon (but I added the "past" part)

Being dead to self means putting no conditions on me, which also means putting no conditions on others.
Forgiveness is supernatural.
"I can't give what I don't have" (referring to LOVE and GRACE)
-all these from Abby Santiago

Restraint sets us apart. (as Christians) -Traci Fredricks

The goal of eternal life is to SEE Jesus. But there are two obstacles to overcome:
  1. My blindness apart from grace
  2. The world is still in darkness.
Darkness in me is overcome by regeneration. Darkness in the world is overcome by reincarnation. The key to both is His glory through grace. Grace is the goal and the means. Grace transforms us from an advocate of a system to a witness of a reality.
-all from a sermon by John Piper

We died to the list of rules. We try to prove our sonship, but we're already there. Just BE. Sometimes there is nothing to obey. How would those around you characterize your Christianity? Do they think you live SO that God will accept you? Or BECAUSE God has accepted you? Don't look at hope and joy as indicators of the intensity of your faith.
-thoughts from different girls in my small group (Oh, how I love these girls and the time I get to spend with them in the Word)

I hope you are blessed and challenged with each of these as I am.