Welcome to our blog! This is a place to share ideas, thoughts, concerns and joys of our faith journey. I'll be posting sporadically, but hope you will feel free to comment and join in the discussions.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Snow on the Sidewalk

It's snowing again. I'm a huge chicken when it comes to driving in the stuff, but I love the way it looks out the window, when I'm nice and warm in my house. It coats the roofs with white cottony drifts. It clings to trees and bushes, and the kids across the street are tramping through it with wild abandon.

I was thinking about my faith life today, as I watched the snow come down. I could make the analogy of God blanketing us with his love like the way the snow blankets the landscape. But I actually wasn't thinking that. What I was thinking is how we seem sometimes to want to cover up our flaws and humanity when we tell the world we are Christians. We cover up the heart in need of repair and the hopes that have become somewhat twisted like the branches of the trees outside the window. Why do we do that? I read a devotional which said that we thought as Christians we had to be strong. We had to show the world how morally upright, sound of body and spirit and well, holy we were; so that others would want to be like us. Except we aren't all that morally upright. At least I'm not. And my soundness of spirit is definitely lacking. Which is why its important to scrape away the stuff that covers our sin and our brokenness. We need to show others how it looks to be a Christian by looking at how much we need Jesus, not by how nice it looks. We need to chip away the veneer of self-supporting righteousness and show our vulnerability. Why else would we need a Savior if we weren't that good or strong to begin with? The answer of course, is that we wouldn't need one. But we do. And he is there, just like the snow covering us. Except he knows our flaws and failures and it doesn't matter, because he loves us anyway, thank goodness.

So when you're out shoveling later on, remember that yes, God's love does blanket us. And even though we're as uneven as the pavement we're shoveling, we're still beautiful in his sight. So share that uneven brokenness with others, so that they might see the light of Christ through you.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I Need Jesus to Walk With Me

I was reading a devotional booklet the other day. I was looking for some answers to some really hard questions. The questions were raised after the Arizona shooting. The questions were not, "Why" nor, "How". The questions were not linear or even really put into words. But they were there in my mind anyway. There were more questions too, when I read that some folks were going to go to a funeral of a child and protest because they felt the shooting was a "sign" of something.

A sign of something.

Well, it probably was a sign of something. But I'm thinking the sign they're looking at doesn't have anything to do with a Savior of love. Or with a God of compassion and forgiveness either. Sometimes I believe the world has gone mad. And sometimes my faith is hard to grasp hold of and onto in the midst of these headlines. But I remember also, that I am not God. I do not know everything in all circumstances. I cannot fathom why such things happen, but I cannot fathom how snowflakes are all different or how the world was made either. Do the people who plan to protest know God so well, so intimately that they are sure what happened was "God" sent? How can you be THAT sure of God? And of humans for that matter? The devotional said this and it spoke to me, "...worshiping morality instead of Jesus is just idolatry. When I'm consumed with my moral performance and find myself obsessively evaluating the morality of others, I've become a believer in moralism, not the gospel."

I'm a believer of Jesus and I'd rather have him explain to me the things I don't understand when I meet him than have some rabble-rousing mob scream things at me when I need compassion and understanding in the here and now. I would wish that Jesus would be with that group of people who think they are doing the Lord's work and help them see that love is what the Lord is about, not judgment and condemnation which seems to be what they are about. I know that Jesus is with us, walking with us and keeping us in his heart, even if we don't have him in ours.