Thursday, June 28, 2007

She Went All Out! (Or: I wish I could be that brave)

So I'm sure that all my adoring readers will recall my last post on wanting to be the kind of girl who gives 110% regardless of how 'foolish' I think I'll look. Now I have an example to point to as an object lesson. (however, in revealing this example I'm going to also reveal that I am entirely shallow and wasted an hour of my time last night)

Who will admit that they watched "So You Think You Can Dance?" last night...... show of hands? ..... anyone?.....

Okay, so maybe I'm alone in this. We do not have cable but our antenna picks up enough US stations that I caught this talent competition last night. It was the last couple of the evening that showed me exactly the kind of moxy I want to display in my areas of skill.

As it goes, the last couple to dance went to rehearsal yesterday morning and the girl partner passed out or something and the doctors wouldn't let her dance last night. However, the male partner had clearly practiced all week too and deserved the opportunity to dance for his votes to stay in the competition. The producers of the show said that he could perform with the choreographers assistant who had helped coach these two contestants all week.

Oh sure, I thought. He gets the thrill of dancing with a professional, fabulous, dancer. I'm imagining a long legged, drop dead gorgeous, pro to come out and make him look good no matter how practiced he was or wasn't...... I couldn't have been more wrong.

I wish I had have paid closer attention to what her name was because I would love to give her credit here for being my new short term role model. This choreographers assistant was shortish, pudgy-ish, and just kind of plain. Instead of wearing some brilliant, revealing costume, she wore a simple swingy skirt with what looked like a nice t-shirt kind of thing....and of course a great pair of heels.

I catch my breath and think, "oh you poor thing. You are going to look ridiculous. No one will take you seriously....I hope you don't make a fool of yourself". But then the music started! And she DANCED!!!

Now, she is clearly not going to win the next international ball room dance competition. She definitely falls more in to the "those who can't, teach" realm of excellence. But did she ever kick some serious butt! She had all the steps, she had all attitude, she had all the moxy, all the sex appeal, all the everything she needed to really go for it. She even let the guy pick her up and flip her over his back somehow.

I had judged her in the way I judge myself and expect others to judge me, and boy was I wrong. I very much underestimated her skill and her committment to the task. I was humbled and encouraged, and challenged. With only a few hours of notice she came out and gave it her all, and no one looked at her like she was a fool, and if they did, shame on them because she was amazing.

So here I am still wanting that kind of drive to really really do the things I know I can do. And wanting my kids to get there too. Years ago my husband and I were taking some of our youth group out to play pool for a couple of hours and before we picked up one girl her father, our pastor, said to her "Remember, boys don't like girls who don't try." She was convinced that she wasn't athletic and that she was going to stink at pool. Her dad wisely reminded her it was better to try and goof up slightly than to stand in the corner saying "I don't know how."

Any day now, I expect that will sink in to my brain. I've only being mulling it over for 9 years now....

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


If I could supernaturally impart some character trait on my children RIGHT NOW it would be to always give their 110% without worrying about looking like a turd so that they can look back without regretting doing a half-hearted job.

Now I'm not saying I want them to go out and make fools of themselves attempting things that God has not gifted them for, but in areas where they are seeing some fruit or have been confirmed in their talents, I want them to go all out and give it all with out shame.

This little rant is coming after my just having watched the highschool musical version of Narnia that I was in 15 years ago. I was Mr. Tumnus and I did a fine job. I could have done a really really good job. And at the time I knew it. I was holding back out of fear of 'trying to hard' and looking like a fool.

Fast forward 2 years. I'm in second year university and my brilliant pastor has written a brilliant musical for the church family. I was in the chorus, and an understudy for a lead role, and I gave about 75% because I was new to the church and I was afraid that someone would look at this young 18 year old and say "who does she think she is coming in all diva like that?"

You can repeat this scenario two more times because said brilliant pastor wrote two more brilliant plays that I was in, and each time I watch them I can see and hear myself holding back. Intentionally. This wasn't fear of screwing up. This was fear of going all out and being mocked for that.

It's like the time our cell group was playing soccer baseball (where the pitcher rolls a big ball to the batter who kicks it and then runs the bases) and I was tired of always being the unathletic girl. So I decided that I was going to bunt the ball and then run like the dickens to get to first base. You know really give 100% and who cares if I'm out of breath when I get there JUST GET THERE and then you can recover because at least you won't get embarrased by being out JUST RUN and block everything out.....

And I did get to first base with out being tagged. Except the whole time I was pep talking myself while I was running, the rest of the cell group was trying to get my attention to say it was a foul ball and I was running (retardedly hard) for no good reason, only to have to go up to the stupid batter's box and do it again without looking like a turd. You know, doing the "oh yeah. I knew it was foul, I meant to do that stupid run like the wind routine. I was just warming up."


So, I've decided this:

Wheras I am skilled and gifted by God in certain areas; and wheras God is most glorified when I serve Him fully; therefore: be it resolved an enacted that I shall give my all each time I am asked to do somethng and I will care only what the Lord says.

Also: whereas I have not been skilled or gifted by God in certain areas; and wheras other really have been; therefore: be it resolved and enacted that I shall humbly and gladly step aside to let others perform to the glory of God where I am woefully unable.

Sounds like a plan.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

It's All About me

Oh I know, you are reading the title of this post and thinking "how self-centered", but you wait and see. I'm right about this one (kind of).

How many times have you heard someone say (or maybe said yourself) "the corporate worship in such-and-such church is so unfilling / dead / unheartfelt / dry."?...and because of that 'corporate experience' your personal experience suffers. Or, to the opposite, have you ever felt the joy and sincerity in a body of believers and had your personal experience improve because of it?

Well, it isn't about the building, the number of people in the building, the kind of songs they did, the amount of sunshine on that given Sunday, or any number of other variables like that. It is all about me (and you and the guy beside you and the other how many individuals in the room).

We all need to understand that the 'quality' of corporate worship (I use that word 'quality with much reservation, because it sounds more shallow than I intend it) depends on the genuineness and sincerity of the individuals. The corporate experience is the sum of the personal worship experiences (now that is some pretty basic math right?)

So if worship really is about a heart connection between me and the Lord that can happen any where, any time, then the Sunday morning Corporate experience for me should just be an extension of what I've been doing all week. If it is 'good' or 'fulfilling' than I would expect it is because my heart is connected to the Lord regardless of what is going on around me. If it is 'bad' or 'disappointing' then chances are I've been far from the Lord all week and am now too easily distracted by what is going on around me.

Can the corporate influence or enhance the personal? Certainly. The body is there for the edification of all its parts. However, my walk with the Lord starts with just Him and me. My walk will end someday with just Him and me. I would expect that on Sunday mornings my worship needs to be primarily about Him and me (with all those around me doing the same which adds up to a REAALY Great thing.)

If you want to talk more about worship visit to follow the conversation they are sponsoring about worship. (their posts may make a bit more sense!)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

My Breath Prayer

I read a brilliant book called Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home by Richard Foster. Actually I've read it several times now and each time I am drawn by his conversation on the simple complexity of prayer.

One of my favourite suggestions he makes is to select a breath prayer for yourself that you offer up many times a day. Something that is on your heart that can be said in one breath, so to speak. How often do I intend to pray "if only I had more time". This gives me the ability to pray without ceasing on one matter that will greatly impact my day, and my heart (oh, I wish you would go and read the book. I'm making this sound an awful lot like a chore...he is much more inviting about this...)

So here is my breath prayer (it is actually more like two breaths worth, but close enough). It is Psalm 19:14.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.

There is never a time when I don't need to keep that prayer on my lips. There is never a time when my speech is so pure and pleasing that I can stop worrying about being acceptable. I will be saying this silently, under my breath, out loud with a cry, and hopefully with my children on many occassions today.

"Commenting on breath prayers, Theophane the Recluse notes, 'Thoughts continue to jostle in your head like mosquitoes. To stop this jostling you must bind the mind with one thought, or the thought of One only. An aid to this is a short prayer, which helps the mind to become simple and unified." (pg. 130 Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home)

In the meantime, you really should find this book. It is such an "open window after a fresh rain" kind of feeling.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


This won't likely be the most pretty post in the Carnival of Beauty this week, but it will be about Truth as it is supposed to be. (please do follow that link and read the other participants of this weeks carnival.) Sometimes the truth of a situation is not pretty, but the Lord's truth comes shining through in His beauty at the right time. That is what this post will look like. Ready?

After baby #3 and baby #4, I struggled with what I'm guessing is Post-Partum depression. I say I'm guessing because I didn't actually go to the doctor to find out if that's what it was or not. Truthfully, I had previously thought it was a joke, the whole PPD thing. Seriously, maybe you are tired, maybe you are grumpy, maybe you just want some attention, but honestly? SNAP OUT OF IT!

Except then I felt that way too. And I realized my arrogance and rudeness and judgemental attitude that I'd held for all those years. So now, as I was feeling like a loser for having been so wrong in the past, now I also felt like jumping off my roof onto a concrete pad, hoping that it would be a far enough jump that I could just wake up in Heaven.

I remember calling my friend and after hearing her "hello" I said "Remind me again why I should want to still be alive?"

I never had one dangerous thought towards my children, for which I praise the Lord. Quite the opposite. I figured if they were done with me they, and my husband, could move on to a better mom, better wife, better life. (see I told you this might get ugly).

And still, as I laid in bed every morning, so dismayed that I had actually woken up again, I knew I couldn't just stay there even though my limbs were like cement. There were 4 children who needed me. If I didn't get up they would not eat. They would sit in their soiled diapers in their cribs all day crying out for a mother who was failing them. I could not let that happen. I had a choice to make. Dragging my self through the day with tears and prayers, I did what I could to do the bare minimums. There was no joy in my soul. I loved my children, I loved my husband, I loved worshipping my Lord, and yet it was all hollow. There was no 'getting myself out' of the pit. I needed Someone's help.

For me the help came in the form of the Word of the Lord. I was believing lies: I was a failure. I couldn't do it all. No one understood. My guilt was too great. My life was too hard. I would never feel joy again.

Turning to the Word for TRUTH, beautiful life giving truth, I found words of encouragement and promise that I wrote out in my Bible to read and re-read every day. Without these I would sink. With them, by the Lord's strength I could slowly stand.

It took time, it took a deliberate choice on my part, and it took the Beauty of the Truth of the Word to pull me out. God is good. I have not found myself there again, by His mercy. And I still stand on these words of promise (this is a long list so get ready!)

(Mat 5:4)

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

(Mat 11:28)

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.

"For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

Psa 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

2Co 4:8 we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;

persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;

Psa 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.

Psa 43:5 Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

Psa 16:10 For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.

You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Rom 11:1 I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel?

Jer 31:13 "Then the virgin will rejoice in the dance, And the young men and the old, together, For I will turn their mourning into joy And will comfort them and give them joy for their sorrow.

Psa 139:11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, And the light around me will be night,"

Even the darkness is not dark to You, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.

Joh 14:1 "Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me.

Job 17:7 "My eye has also grown dim because of grief, And all my members are as a shadow.

Job 17:9 "Nevertheless the righteous will hold to his way, And he who has clean hands will grow stronger and stronger.

Psa 30:2 O LORD my God, I cried to You for help, and You healed me.

O LORD, You have brought up my soul from Sheol; You have kept me alive, that I would not go down to the pit.

Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones, And give thanks to His holy name.

There were other verses that He used to speak the truth of His love for me, but space would dictate that I don't include them all. The Beauty of Truth is that EVERY TIME it combats the lies that live in our minds. Thank You Lord for that.

I'm Gonna sing this like I mean it (and then hopefully I really will)

It has kind of been "one of those weeks" in the "how are you doing?" department. I refuse to cave in (permanently) to that yucko blah feeling. So here goes my attempt to change my path: (sing along if you know the tune).

I can see clearly now the rain is gone.

I can see all obstacles in my way.

Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind

It's gonna be a bright, bright, sun-shiny day.

I think I can make it now the pain is gone.

All of my bad feelings have disappeared.

Here is that rainbow I've been praying for.

It's gonna be a bright, bright, sun-shiny day.

Look all around there's nothin' but blue skies

Look straight ahead, nothin' but blue skies.

I can see clearly now the rain has gone.

I can see all obstacles in my way.

Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind

It's gonna be a bright, bright sun-shiny day.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Heard at My House (or: Spelling the Homeschooling Way)

Daughter #3 (age 1 week less than 6): Hey mom, I know how to spell "hello".

Mommy (rather surprised): You do?

Daughter #3 : yup! dot-seven-seven-three-four

Mommy: Close enough for now.

(did I mention she was holding a calculator upside down when she said this?)

Monday, June 11, 2007

A Sunday Surprise (or how the smallest thing made the biggest difference)

Several of you reading this wee blog are aware of my baby dilemma (to conceive or not to conceive, that is the question? Whether tis nobler to have a 7th baby....okay I'll stop).

So yesterday I go to church. Very good. I'm doing okay. Haven't bawled like a toddler with his finger pinched in the door way for several weeks now. I walk in to the sanctuary and there is the young married couple that used to be kids in my husband and my Youth group when we led it a million years ago, and lo and behold, there is their week old baby girl in the carseat in front of them.

And here comes the lump in the throat.

You need to know that I just had been at a baby shower maybe 14 hours earlier with little impact on my emotions. But now this wee baby girl and her lovely young parents. I squated down beside her (which was a feat in itself) and placed my hand on her belly. Her entire torso disappeared in my grasp. She apparently is under 6 pounds right now. Just the size my 2nd was at birth...

I looked up at her parents and said, "Oh my word. I'm going to cry." At which point the father puts his arm around my shoulders and gives me a little squeeze and a little rub (for goodness sake's will someone tell the world that touching a woman who is about to cry only makes the tears come faster?) The thought of these two young people who I watched grow up, now married, now with a baby, really trying to follow hard after the was all too much.

And so I felt my heart well up with blessings for this baby and for this new momma and papa. What a wonderful path they are beginning down! Do they know what they are in for? How far are they willing to go down the path of self-sacrifice? Are they prepared for the joy and pain being parents is going to bring them?

And then I couldn't stop crying. The whole service was a battle to regain my composure. In my head my life long battle raised up again: Do I want another baby? What if I can't conceive again because of the complications after baby 6? Will I be devastated? Will I be relieved? If I have one more, does that mean I'll end up with 12? Am I willing to go through this again? Am I willing not to? How much does God require? What does "be fruitful and multiply" really mean? How far does a girl have to go?......

And on, and on and on andonandonandon.......

Congratulations Kate and Chris. She is beautiful. I just never expected such wee girl to have such an impact for the Kingdom already.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Worship, Plain and Simple

One of the areas of life to which I most heartily devote myself, (both doing and figuring it out...clearly haven't mastered it yet) and the state in which I am always trying to rest (but just knowing what to do doesn't always make it easy), is that of worship. This is not a Sunday morning thing, but rather a lifetime of enjoying the presence of God. Romans 12:1 reminds us to "present [our] bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is [our] spiritual service of worship". This is clearly in some respects a very daunting task, although it is equally freeing as we realize that we are not bound to find the 'perfect' style or the 'right' place to 'do worship'. What worship seems to be about is my heart connecting with my Father's. My relationship with Him deepening, and my experience of Him being more tangible. If I believe that there is no one right way/style/place to worship, and if I see worship as serving my Lord with my whole life and watching Him at work around me, then worship can be as divine as hearing the Hallelujah Chorus or as mundane as changing my baby's diaper. It is about my heart. Am I able to soften my heart to feel His love and give praise back to my Father when I find myself scrubbing toilets?

For me worship needs to involve both knowing who God is, and then feeling His love for me and mine for Him. There is both the head and the heart that need to be engaged. John Piper is helpful when he writes "True worship comes from people who are deeply emotional and who love deep, sound doctrine" (pg. 76 Desiring God) For me to serve a God that I really haven't met through the Word is not true least not worship of the Lord as He says He is. And for me to delve into the depths of theology but not feel a stirring of my heart and emotions, delighting in my knowledge and experience of Him is not true worship...perhaps it is merely a good academic exercise. If I can go through my day filling my God-given role in a way that glorifies Him and satisfies me in Him, then that is worship, Sunday morning music or not.

And speaking of Sunday morning music, I have been witness to so many extremes of congregational singing from acapella psalmody to men's choirs, from full band teams to classical soloists, from the extremely talented and trained to the family dinner table. Each of these have on occassion been entirely 'worshipful' and entirely trite and 'entertaining'. The difference is when I see the heart of the worhsip leader and when my own heart is engaged. "Where feelings for God are dead, worship is dead. " (pg.79 Desiring God).

Perhaps when you strip away all that is cluttering our concept of worship, what is left is relationship. And the best way to grow and develop any relationship is to get to know that person really well and to soften your heart to show love to them, being equally vulnerable to receive love from them.

For more on Worship visit Wonderful Pages.

This Was a Great Read

I know many of you HSB people get the Homeschool Minute in your inbox already, so maybe you've read this. However, I felt Todd Wilson's bit today was particularly stellar. The topic for the day was "Friends" and I loved his perspective. Here are his words:

Hey Mom,

This is going to be a short one. I'm parked in a McDonald's parking lot at about a 30-degree angle and my laptop is about to slide off the table. I know the "girls" will have gobs of advice for growing and nurturing friendships: it will probably have a lot to do with tea parties, scrapbooking, and "feelings."

My only thought about friends is - make your husband your best friend. Don't let any other girl friendship displace your man from being number one. It's easy to let happen, because "he" doesn't think, feel, or understand like a woman.

I know my wife will sometimes say, "I'll call my sister, she'll understand."

When she does, I can't help feeling a little like second-rate goods. I know other husbands feel that way too. A friend of my wife's announced her pregnancy to my wife before she told her own husband. I know he wouldn't have screamed and sounded as excited as my wife did; but that's beside the point.

So, Mom, don't let another friendship overshadow your friendship with your husband. Here's a little way to tell if one already has: ask your husband who he thinks you'd rather talk to and be with --- him or "her."

If he says "her," do whatever it takes to show him he's number one on your friendship list.

The Lord made man and woman different, but both in His image. As much as a girlfriend is a wonderful blessing from the Lord, He intended for us to be completed and fulfilled by our spousal relationship first. Perhaps 'needing to share with a girlfriend' is just one more tool in the arsenal of our enemy to destroy marriage.

Lord help me to use my friendships wisely and to not let anyone come between me and my husband.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Heard At My House

(Mommy and 3 year old son snuggled up in bed pretending to be baby birds in a nest...)

Mommy: kisses son

Son: "Mommy, we can't kiss. Birdies don't kiss"

Mommy: "Why not?"

Son: "Because birdies have beaks."

Mommy: "Instead of...?"

Son: "Birdies can't kiss because they have beaks and not tongues."

(Mommy: mental note...find out who has been teaching my son to kiss!)

Friday, June 1, 2007

Thought-Provoking Question

Alright, all you blog readers, deep thinkers, and occassional is your assignment. I'm going to ask a thought-provoking question and you can give me your best answer either as a comment here or as a link to your blog where you have shared your vast wisdom. Ready? My husband and I have discussed this and I would like to hear your thoughts too.

The book The Five Love Languages explains that one way people express and receive love is through encouraging words (I would be one of them). Assuming that God created this in a person (which I believe He did) how does one reconcile the desire and appreciation of encouraging words without being someone who is driven by seeking the praise of man (Matt.6:1-5 speaks of doing righteous deeds and praying in a certain manner, in front of man, to be noticed by them, honoured by them etc. Jesus says in doing that those people have already received, through the praise of man, their reward in full.)

Have at it. Discuss with your spouse, read the Word, and let me know what you think. Some of you lurkers may even feel like commenting and sharing your wisdom.

Looking forward to reading your input!

Saturday, June 2, 2007 - Great question…
Posted by Jeremy
Here’s my go at it… If someone has done something well and we fail to praise him or her for it, then I think we have not fulfilled our responsibility as a friend, a spouse, a church, a co-worker, etc. Too often there isn’t enough praise given because we fear stoking the flames of vanity. But giving or receiving praise for accomplishment isn’t vanity. Let’s take singing, for sake of argument. If you sang a solo for the glory of God yet no one complimented you, you might be discouraged and think you have not accomplished what you wanted to do. It is for God and you want the solo to be excellent. Praise from your listeners confirms your job was done well. Also, singing a solo in front of a congregation is supposed to impact the audience. If it was just for God alone, then you would only sing in the shower. Praise confirms that people were effected. C.S. Lewis talked about this in Mere Christianity and John Piper picks up on it. When we read a great book, listen to a great song or watch a great film, we tell our friends about it; we “praise” it. When someone accomplishes something, and someone praises him or her, it is a confirmation that the accomplishment was enjoyable and that it affected you. To praise something is also enjoyable… I mean, why do I go on and on about Homer on my blog? By praising it, I am enjoying it anew. (So, to not accept praise for a solo would hinder someone’s fulfilled enjoyment)

As a church we are called to build each other up, to recognize, acknowledge and hone the gifts of the saints. This is done it part through praise. God created humans with unique gifts to be used well. By praising His creation and what His created beings have done, we are ultimately praising Him. Stradivarius violins are the best violins in the world. When the violin is played well, we marvel at the instrument but ultimately we praise Stradivarius himself, the creator. Vanity is when we do something for praise in order to elevate ourselves over God and over others. To seek praise for encouragement and confirmation is actually an outgrowth of a humble heart. Instead of having high esteem for your talents, you have high esteem for those you are seeking to serve by seeking praise from their lips, not your own.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - What we give, not what we get...
Posted by MrsPages at
I've been thinking on this all weekend.

First off, I think the Love Languages book is excellent and has helped MrPages and I in many ways.

But I can't help thinking that the Love Languages are supposed to be about what we give, not about what we get.

It's sort of like Paul's instruction to husbands and wives. It's not our responsibility to get our husbands to love us; it is our responsibility to respect them.

It is not our responsibility to get others to love us in a manner that we desire. It is our responsibility to love others in a manner that speaks to their hearts.

And I guess the down side of this, is that we may not get the love we desire from the person we most love. And that is probably the part of my Christian walk that I most detest, and I most fail at.

I have tons more that I could add, about communication, and conflict resolution, and stuff...but another day.

• Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - This is good!
Posted by bestsister
I think MrsPages has touched on what my problem with this question has been all along. And I think Jeremy gives me a bit of clarity in dividing my one question in to two parts.

I completely agree with MrsPages that in my home, in loving my spouse, in serving my children, it is about what I give, not what I get (as grating as that can be to sit under sometimes). Here, in the domestic arena, I know what is required of me regardless of feedback: For example, I am expected to feed my children a healthy meal. Whether or not they praise me and give me encouraging words for my veggie and tofu stir fry is not the point.

However, in serving at Church and using the gifts the Lord has given me, the feed back that Jeremy is talking about is crucial, most times, to see that the work He has called me to is indeed glorifying Him and meeting the needs of others. Now having said that, I know there have been and will continue to be many times that we serve in the church (background or foreground) and never get 'noticed'. I know there will be times where serving the Lord will result in persecution, not praise. But I do think that part of my joy in serving the Lord is see His people respond to Him the way He intends.

However in both the domestic and the corporate, if I am serving IN ORDER TO RECEIVE the comments and praise, instead of being motivated by LOVE than I have missed the point, and have received my reward in full.

Does that make sense?
Thanks for your input. I hope more still come.

• Wednesday, June 6, 2007 - heavenly hash and heavenly beings....
Posted by halfpint
I was ruminating over this with a bowl of heavenly hash.... Your blog made me think of angels. We see them all throughout the bible going place to place to fulfill God's calling for them. They are so beautiful that people are tempted to bow down and worship them. What is their response? Basically it's ' get up! don't worship me! I'm only the messenger here to do my master's bidding! Worship Him! He is the worthy one!" They are seen fighting in His army and proclaiming his glory from the heavens both when He was born in Bethlehem and now in heaven around His throne......"Holy, Holy, Holy!" What struck me about them is how unassuming they are. You don't hear them say "yes I'm fabulous, go ahead and admire me." They know what they were created for and they DO it. Do we know what we were created for? Why did God make all things? 'For His Glory' as the catechism says. John Piper says our chief end is to 'glorify God and enjoy him forever.' I am reminded of a human example in all of this. There is a man in my extended family...... he has been a faithful husband, father and servant in his church. He is not dynamic or a great speaker or singer but he serves with all he is again and again and again. I would be surprised if he gets thanks very often or any form of praise. He serves his sick spouse and has for many years and continues to help out his children when they are in need though they are fully grown. I see Christ in him and I see a reflection of the angels in his unassuming manner.
It is wonderful to give encouragement, I'm all for it. Instead of saying "you have a fabulous voice" or "you are such a talented speaker" perhaps people should be saying.... "Thank-you for your ministry to God, it has blessed me" or " God spoke to me through you." I think our lack of confidence in ministry and life in general might be a reflection of us not knowing God deeply enough, how He see us and how we see Him. It might also be a lack of understanding of what the word service means which Barb and her friend have mentioned. My prayer for my life is that I can see past myself to get to the reality of seeing HIM. amen.