Aside

Don’t just agree with, DO what God says.

Bob Goff, Everybody Always

Our world feels like a mess. Media, social media and news feeds are full of negativity, hatred, disasters, political attacks, violations, biting and hateful sarcasm, angry reactions, of argument after argument. There are so many arguments.

There are also a lot of good things, cries for help, positive support, expressions of compassion, fundraising for others, prayers offered, cute goat photos ❤. There is so much good going on…and I like to believe I am part of that.

I am compassionate by nature. Pretty nice most of the time. I am the first to say I hope, wish, want and will ______. Yes, God, that’s good…oh amen, we should feed the hungry, minister to the broken hearted, take care of the orphans. But you meant, sweet, clean little Martha from church, right? What about when it’s the homeless guy, or drug addict, or down and out, or the jerk behind us, the person we don’t like the smell of? Or when your elderly relative needs a ride, their bathroom cleaned or makes up excuses to see someone because they are lonely?

But here’s the thing, often I do go clean the bathroom (and oh by the way, I’m a germ phobe), but grumble about it and then say, “no, it’s not a hassle,” when they pick up on my spirit or see me washing my hands for the 10th time, making them feel ashamed. Just a guess, but that probably isn’t what God meant. I know people who hate christians, the church and maybe God himself because so many of us (like how I included you all?) have lived agreeing with, but not really doing God’s work. Oh I’ll be the first to say I don’t like inauthenticity, even hold my pastors and church leaders to task over this (inside voice of course), but somehow I have a kinder scale for myself. I mean, they should love everyone, right? That is their job. But, guess what? It’s my job too and people see right through that kind of hypocrisy. I’m why they hate christians and the church, like it or not. I just threw up in my mouth (TUIMM).

I can send a check, share a fundraiser or post, make a heartfelt comment, give away stuff I didn’t want anyway, throw a 10 second prayer at it, even serve or say I wish something was different and allow self-righteous pride to make me feel good about it. Ha! I have even had the thought, God my part is to support those who do that work. And lucky for me, I have a daughter who is a missionary, so it’s real easy to agree. So glad, I’m not part of the problem. TUIMM again.

Whether my doing something about it is taking time to listen to someone, research and vote, care or become part of a solution for the very thing I am complaining about, I have so much good to give. I can share, give, support, connect, fund, serve, help or march. I can be available, not get easily offended, believe and love others, demonstrate love through service, create, build, honor and respect. I can be a force of true goodness and grace, acceptance and of practical love when needing a coat or food or the bathroom cleaned.

I know there is so much need in our world, neighborhood and in our families. I have to believe if we truly begin to DO what God has said and not just smugly agree from our pew or armchair, oh what a beautiful world this can be. I am so grateful for grace that forgives our shame and sin and helps us become who we are supposed to be.

Have grace dear ones. Be grace. Let’s DO this work…let’s change the world!

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He can do it again – finding faith in “the middle”

The middle. We are so safe in the middle. Not too in. Not too out. Nice and safe.

bird on gate at farm

The allure of the middle is a false safety net. The middle is full of fear. Protecting our heart from growing too attached, “shusshing” our spirits to not thrill too much, quieting our minds to not get carried away with dreams, quelling the soul to protect it from believing good things can come to you.

Why, when the very thing I have dreamed and prayed about for years is coming true, am I afraid? Silly vanity…robbing the joy of blessing through worry as if the universe is conspiring against me. Foolish heart that tip toes around the proof, afraid to shout it from the rooftops for fear of it not working out. Selfish pride, to assume I can live this life and not feel pain. The middle suffocates.

But alas, doesn’t this world need a little more hope…a little more possibility and positivity? Doesn’t this world need to see someone reach and try? To imagine a new beginning, a fresh start, a dream come true. Doesn’t this world, yea my very heart, need the medicine of courage and strength of will to dare to dream? Who then, am I to withold this strength from the world? Who am I to push back the tide of courage to others?

Softly, gently I step. Moving into the light of possibility. Of dreams come true, of possible heart ache, indeed, but of new life most certainly!

Things are not sure yet, but I am taking baby steps to find my new horizon. God, you have not failed me yet and I believe you are going to move a mountain once again.