Monday, September 28, 2009


why do i look for recognition?
why do i love more when i think there's a higher chance it will be noticed?

Saturday, September 5, 2009


recently when i've been praying and journaling about suffering and love.

i hear too frequently people leaving relationships that become difficult, or that have the potential to hurt them. yes, there are times to leave relationships - if they're abusive, or leading you in to a bad lifestyle - but otherwise i don't believe it's right to leave.

the worldly view is "get out before i get hurt" but i don't think it's biblical to apply that in our relationships. if Jesus left relationships before they hurt Him i would not have a relationship with Him.

Jesus didn't avoid pain in relationships, he didn't protect himself or stay guarded. he withdrew to pray, but never held back or distanced himself.

we're called to love as Jesus loved. this means loving without protective barriers, loving not from a distance, but right there in close relationship, and enduring ungratefulness and rejection without complaining. you will be hurt, and you will hurt, that's part of being broken, and living in post-fall culture. Jesus did it all, let's stop making excuses, i do it all the time. i love the people i enjoy, and even when i'm helping with youth i love on the people i like to love.

i need to, and we need to love people that will inevitably hurt us with the full knowledge this will happen - Jesus did it (look at Him loving peter and judas) - this is part of our calling. it's vulnerable, it's crappy, it's hard, and goes against everything we feel inside.

right now it's trendy to say things like "love the hard to love" or "love the least of these", it even sounds romantic (romantic as in cool and classy not "let's date") to talk about loving through pain and hurt, but it's not fun, and it's not something easy to do. Jesus prayed that the same love the Father had for Him would be in us, and i think we'll need that if we're gonna get even close to living it out. i need to pray for that. i need that love to help me. i can't even love the like-able ones without God.

i'm rambling on now, but i think it was mother theresa that said "love until it hurts, then love some more." she was just echoing Jesus, but i think she makes a good point.

gonna leave it there. love.

Friday, September 4, 2009

some thoughts on extremes and tensions

here are a few things i've been thinking about, i'm not finished this blog, and i'm not finished thinking and praying about my thoughts. i'm just trying to reconcile some different views, and i feel like it's important not to become too opinionated and argumentative. being 'strongly opinionated' too frequently produces an angry person separated from God by their anger. and that's not cool.

i myself am just bouncing ideas around in my head, i'm not even sure where i'm headed with these thoughts.

first thought i have:
neighborhood church
i like the local church, i like being a part of a neighborhood community, and having my church in that community. it's really significant. going 40 minutes to church seems kind of silly...look who's talking here.

second thought:
big church/house church
i hear a lot of debates and conversations about big churches with big sound and big lights. either people are saying they wish they had that at their church, or they are arguing against it. (the argument usually sounds like "we should be giving that money to the poor!", i think that's just a cover-up and that they may just enjoy being critical) people arguing against big churches, and satellite churches prefer the home-church and meet in basement style meetings with mellow acoustic or even taize style worship. that's cool, and yes, that's the way the first church used to meet, but they also had big worship meetings, and peter, phillip and all those dudes also frequented meetings with a few thousand worshipers. when Jesus came in to the city people had all kinds of expensive oils, waved palm branches and made a big scene. i think lights and sound can be very similar in the worship gathering to waving palm branches and pouring out expensive oils. yes these meetings weren't as frequent as the house-church meetings but i think they're still important in one's worship lifestyle.

third thought
leadership: education vs ordinary pastor/elder?
peter and john are referred to as 'idiots' by roman leaders, but they speak with the power of God, often we make potential leaders go through years of school, but these fishermen, and many other leaders in the early church were selected based on their willingness to serve. on the flipside, a lot of people (myself even at one point) look at this and rebel against the system and try to avoid education saying "i don't need an education to serve God". they're right, they don't, but my thought on this subject is that if you have a capacity (mental, or financial) to get an education God can use that even more. paul was a great choice on God's part, because he had a solid hebrew education and that enabled him to write the epistles with such a strong voice.

fourth thought
we either go super confrontational and in your face (which is sometimes necessary) or we love in to relationship and give space. let's not ignore the Spirit's role, and let's realize that different people have different needs. it's dangerous when we give too much space, or are too open-ended, and it's just as dangerous to be in-your-face making noise, and not listening to God about the person's needs.