Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Radical means…chapter 6

If you want to read more about chapter 6, jump over to  marla & check it out.

Quotes that really stuck with me…

pg. 111 “If our lives do not reflect radical compassion for the poor, there is reason to wonder if Christ is really in us at all.”

pg. 115 “Regardless of what we say or sing or study on Sunday morning, rich people who neglect the poor are not the people of God.”

These are strong statements.  David Platt says that caring for the poor is (among other things) evidence of our salvation.  whoa. I had never thought of that. I am still processing. 

He points how easy it is to look away, when faced with the statistics of how many people will go to bed hungry, or even die from starvation today – easy until those faces have names & you have seen them & loved on them.  I agree completely.



pg. 123 “I realize there is never going to come a day when I stand before God & He says, ‘I wish you had kept more for yourself.’”

The Lord is telling me today…it is just stuff!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Priceless is defined as having a value beyond any price.

That describes this past weekend for me. Katie & had a girls weekend away.


We stayed at the Good House B&B in Warrensburg.


We ate at Chic-Fil-A (Katie’s very favorite place to eat. hands down).

IMG_7085 - Copy (2)

We ate the most delicious breakfast ever! We shopped, we laughed, we had long conversation, we saw 2 great movies, Sleepless in Seattle & Secretariat.

IMG_7084 - Copy

Priceless…having a value beyond any price.

Radical means…chapter 5.

I am just typing out my thoughts here, as I continue to process what I have read in chapter 5.

Our study guide (through church, compiled by Erin Duren) poses this question: Have you ever felt that you weren't a good enough communicator or didn't have what it took to tell people about Jesus? 

Absolutely.  I have gotten anxious about, avoided it, clearly disobeyed the Lord when He was urging me to tell someone about Him. 

However, when I have prayed that He would provide the opportunity, and then He would put the words in my mouth, He has.  Without a doubt, He has. So, why don't I pray for that more? He tells me He will supply my needs, and I've seen Him do it, specifically in these situations. Why don't I do it? trust Him & just do it? pride? fear of rejection? fear of not knowing what to say? fear of looking foolish? all of the above?

Another question posed by Erin: Have you ever heard the expression "actions speak louder than words?" What do you think of when you hear that expression? 

I think of what someone does, rather then what they say. I think of what I say, rather than do.  I am the Queen of Good Intentions.  I say a lot.  What do I do?

David Platt talks about receivers vs reproducers.  Receivers hear the Word, sitting back & taking it in, sometimes even with the attitude, "What can I get out of this? How will this benefit me?"  Reproducers hear the Word with the attitude of, "How can I listen to His word so that I am equipped to teach His word to others?"

I have found myself in both of these roles.  More often than not, I would fall into the Receiver camp.  The last time I distinctly remember being in the Reproducer camp, was several months back (a year? not sure about the time), when I found my life completely changed by applying this principle: It is not God's creation's (Jay, Katie, Mary Margaret, my folks, sister, friends, etc) -- It is not God's creation's role to fulfill me.  It is His role.  When I look to His creation for fulfillment, I will be disappointed, again & again & again.  When people around me do not meet my expectations, I get mad.  When those people around me do not behave in a way that makes me happy, I then get upset, angry, pout, etc.  However, if I choose to live in a way in which I look to Jesus to fulfill me, I not only have a freedom in my relationship with Him, I have a freedom in my relationship with those people around me, too!  The pressure is off. 

All that is to say, I found myself in the role of Reproducer after hearing this principle (many times) and then applying it to my life. My life is changed.  My perspective is so different now.  And I want to tell everyone in my life about this. I want to see others experience a new freedom in life, as I have. 

from Marla - Do you find yourself (and your kiddos) isolated from the world in a spiritual safe-deposit box? How can we break open that box?

Katie (almost 13) and I were talking about this last week. She pointed out to me that she lives in such a “safe” environment, when is she going to get to “practice” showing Christ to those who do not know Him.  And really, the same goes for me (for the most part) with that same “safe” environment.  We (Jay, Katie, Mary Margaret & I) did small group last winter/spring, “practicing” serving others in our church.  This winter/spring we are going to do small group with the specific intention of serving others out in our community.  Katie is ready to get her hands dirty, and we will be right there with her. 

Last thought for now... pg. 103, last paragraph, "Jesus beckons each of us to plainly, humbly, and quietly focus our lives on people."  Pastor Mark challenged us Sunday to love people, and use things.  Another conversation I had with Dario, the pastor in Honduras, was when I asked him about translating for me.  That whole week, I would ask him how to say this or that.  This was the day before we were heading home, and we were eating some chocolate that was so delicious. I asked Dario how to say, "I love chocolate!"  He just looked at me, kind of puzzled, and said, "Here in Honduras, we say we love people, not things. I do not know how to say that."

That stuck.  How may times do I flippantly say, "I love this movie! or I love this book! or I love this chocolate!" How many times do I say, "I love this person, or that person!"  But what am I doing to show that I really do love the person?

"Jesus beckons each of us to plainly, humbly, and quietly focus our lives on people"...and there are plenty around me that I can focus on.  The question I ask myself tonight is, will I choose to focus on others, rather than myself?

I'd love to know your thoughts.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Radical means...chapter 4

Jay gave me good advice, that I did not take. He said, "Do not read Radical right before you go to bed, because your mind will be going after you read it, and you won't be able to go to sleep."

He was right.

pg. 63, where the pastor was saying, "I told that church that if they didn't give financial support to this missionary, I was going to pray that God would send their kids to Japan to serve with that missionary." I went back & read it again, thinking that surely I had read it wrong. I thought, "You have got to be kidding me!" And then I remembered about a SS teacher of high school boys I heard about recently, who took his class to McDonald's during SS, because during class that day, a guest was going to be speaking to the young people about the possibility of giving a year of their lives to go to the mission field (the year between high school & college). That teacher said, "You boys don't need to hear any of that." Again, are you kidding me?

It is easy for me to be supportive of that idea right now. Katie & Mary Margaret are years away from the possibility of that choice. God help me if I discourage them from choosing that when their time comes to choose.

pg. 70, "The message of Biblical Christianity is not "God loves me, period."... it is "God loves me so that I might make Him - His ways, His salvation, His glory, and His greatness - known among all nations." I love this!

I was reminded in this chapter that God saved me for His glory, so that He might use me to make Him known. Not so that He could use me to make me known. He desires for me to be a reflection of Him, whether that is here in Jefferson City, or in Sierra Leone, West Africa.

7 + years ago, I felt like moving to the Midwest, 10 - 12 hours away from family & dear friends, was pretty radical. And I know it was to some of the people in our lives at the time. Now, 7 years later, it doesn't seem so radical anymore.

pg 72, "Indeed, Jesus Himself has not merely called up to go to all the nations, He has commanded us to go to all the nations. We have taken this command, though, and reduced it to a calling - something that only a few people receive." I also like that he pointed out that it doesn't have to be to the nations OR to the community around me - it can be BOTH.

Any thoughts?