24 February 2010

Read this. Really.

There's so much in my heart, and pages and pages of notes right now. But the season has not allowed me time to write. Maybe it's best - because it allows me the opportunity to share some things that normally might be overlooked. Like this. All I can say is "wow," as the tears well up.

03 February 2010

Fairy-dust or Dirt.

"The notion that only good things happen to faithful people was put to rest on a Friday afternoon at Calvary." ~William Willimon

I’ve been pondering faith today. Not the fairy-dust, flittering kind of faith that smiles and says “it’ll all be OK, sweetie” with a slight wink - but a weighty, dirty, deliberate faith. I’ve seen that faith in action before, and have always admired it. In fact, I’ve often said in moments of inspiration, reflection and prayer, “Lord, I’m here to do what You desire – I’ll follow Your path, press into You fully, go wherever and do whatever.” Gosh, I do love Jesus. And I want those words to be true. I want my life to be a complete picture of His glory and His majesty, because He deserves no less. I want to live a life that is faith-filled.

Or at least I think I do.

When I live life in the day-to-day, I see myself much more drawn to a comfortable life that far too often draws its strength from the here-and-now rather than the now-and-forever. I see someone suffer, and I reach for faith to get through. I have a difficult day, and I reach for faith to move past it. I hear of someone else’s heartfelt desires and hopes, and I reach for faith to join them in celebrating the yet-unseen victory. Wow, I reach for faith like a soda or a bag of chips.

Love is something more stern and splendid than mere kindness.” C.S Lewis

But how often do I simply and deliberately reach for faith as an act of love for my Saviour? Reading Hebrews 11 is always a sobering thing for me. While I smile at reading about those who have walked the road before me, paving a beautiful, narrow, well-worn way, I am jarred by the imagery.

It's impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that He exists and that He cares enough to respond to those who seek Him. ~Heb. 11:6 MSG

Would I reach for a dirty faith that says “I’m walking INTO hardship because I know my God will not let me down.” Would I reach for a weighty faith that says “I’m walking INTO suffering because I know my God will not let me go.” Would I deliberately reach for a faith that leads to pain or sorrow? Oh, how I would love to say “yes.”

But, at the end of the day, am I really looking for fairy-dust faith?

How about you? Fairy-dust or dirt?

Of Groundhogs and God

Every February 2nd, Punxatawney Phil shyly greets hundreds of waiting fans, news organizations, and curious passers-by at Gobbler’s Knob to do a little prognosticating. And with very rare exception, Phil walks out of his little burrow, looks up to the sky obscured by trees, people and lights, then looks down to see his shadow. He returns to the burrow, jeered by the crowds, newspapers and television stations, and social media sites. Phil’s shadow might mean six more weeks of winter, but delivers a beautiful promise.

Spring will come. Because it always does. In good time.

On March 23rd, the vernal equinox takes place without fail. It doesn’t come a moment too soon or too late. The sun and earth fall into perfect alignment so that the day and night are exactly the same length. Spring! The flowers may bloom early, filling the air with their fragrance, and the sun’s warmth may dance on the shoulders of those eagerly awaiting her affection. Or the skies may still be grey, hesitant to shake off the chill of winter. But spring will still arrive, on time. In good time.

It’s the same in our lives, isn’t it? We want so much for life’s dark winters to move along quickly. We plead with God to show us spring. Instead, He casts His shadow. Over and over again in scripture, God’s shadow is seen as a place not of fear but of comfort– a shadow that promises our soul’s spring will indeed arrive, on time. In good time.

Shadows (David Crowder)

Life is full of light and shadow
O the joy and O the sorrow
O the sorrow

And yet will He bring dark to light
And yet will He bring day from night

When the shadows fall on us
We will not fear, we will remember

When darkness falls on us
We will not fear, we will remember

When all seems lost , when we're thrown and we're tossed
We remember the cost
We’re resting in the shadow of the Cross