14 March 2015

deep{er} #29: reflections

Hello, friends:)

I cannot tell you enough how much time flies--- I seriously thought I had another day to post! LOL! 

UPDATE: As you can tell by my opening statement, this week has been SUPER busy again! Here's what's been happening: 
  •  Discipleship- it's been going well! I really enjoy having J come over on Tuesdays. We are opening up more and getting more comfortable with each other... being with her makes me wish I had someone to disciple me when I was a teenager! Anyway here's my "Quick Reflection"---this lesson was about friendship with Jesus and the stories of Martha and Mary. The first story is one I'm very familiar with- Luke 10:38-42. Jesus visits these women and Martha is busy/distracted with preparations while Mary is at the feet of Jesus listening to him. I love how our study pointed out that Martha was gently rebuked and taught that there is more to life than work/etc. It's so easy to fall into the worldview of wanting credit for everything and working hard (so hard you miss out)... but Jesus was telling her to spend time with him. NOTE TO SELF! Great lesson right there! The second story was even better because I was also familiar with it but never read it the way it was presented (I miss out on so much info sometimes! LOL!)- John 11:1-16. Mary and Martha's brother, Lazarus  had died and Jesus came to raise him from the dead. Their reactions to his death were different, and Jesus responded differently to both women! I love that! Martha ran to Jesus and wanted to talk it out with him--- and Jesus talked with her! Mary waited and then went to Jesus, falling at his feet weeping. Jesus wept with her! LOOOOOVE that! When I go to God... it's a combo of these two reactions. I wait and try to do it on my own or I wait and not saying anything because I don't know what to say or want to hide my thoughts... and then I finally realize I need to go to God. I do wish I ran more to Him. NOTE TO SELF--- must try running to God:) 
  • Visitors- I love studying in our Study Room (check out my video tour HERE)! This week I was visited by two different creatures. Olsen was the first one... he loves to bother me when I'm studying... for good reasons though! He usually has to go out or needs food. But the second creature freaked me out the other night! In the video tour I mention that we have bird feeders outside our window. Trav and I like watching the birds eat and gather together. We also have pesky squirrels that eat the birdseed. One night this last week I heard scratching outside the window (which is above the couch I sit on for my studies).... I hit the wall thinking it was a squirrel. It continued and got louder. I turned around and saw two large eyes staring back at me! LOL! I freaked out because it was a large raccoon eating the birdseed! I never thought I would see that when I looked outside into the dark! LOL! 
    You've got to love this look! Olsen is such a goose! 
    Not sure you can see... but there is a large raccoon on our windowsill staring back at me! LOL! 
REFLECTION: I have a couple of things to say today... they kind of go together... and then again, they could be completely random thoughts! LOL! 

For 2 weeks (HERE and HERE) I mentioned something about being upset because the world is bad/horrible/getting worse/pulling me down/etc., and I'm finding it hard to live like Jesus. 

Well.... this feeling is even more than what I've talked about the past 2 weeks... I want to be a GOOD Christian role model. I thought I was doing this, but it's so different than what I was taught! Honestly, I didn't have a Christian role model until very recently. So I've been doing my best, but Christianity is SO MUCH MORE! I love this quote from a sermon I heard on the radio the other day: "Christianity is a religion of the heart. An outward compliance is NOT enough." SOOOOOOOOOOOOO true! I'm trying to live like Jesus but that's not enough... I've got to get the Word down into my heart, as well as have a deep{er} relationship with God! When I only have an outward compliance I get sidetracked by the world... I've got to stick with my Bible and live with Jesus in my heart. *Hope this makes sense! It made sense to me when I heard that quote on the radio! LOL! 

Ok... so here's my big reflection for the week---- a bit of background first...For about a year I've been stressing over how hard it is to be a leader in a church and if I could be a good leader. Pastors/leaders are held to such high standards and guidelines (there are lots of Bible verses about this). Trav and I were disappointed in many leaders that we knew, and we definitely didn't want to become like them (but that was really all we had been taught). As soon as Trav and I took on the role of Worship Leaders at NHE, I started to stress again but tried to put my trust in Jesus that he would give me the knowledge/strength/etc. Just a month ago, Trav and I were listening to a sermon that mentioned the early church leader Diotrephes [3 John]. I found this story interesting and then forgot about it.

Until this week. My 3030 Challenge is continuing (btw- LOVE it), and I read 3 John

3 John is a letter from John to Gaius, a man who generously gave to followers of Christ. This letter also mentioned 2 other people: Demetrius- another man who gave to followers of Christ and loved the Truth, and Diotrephes- a self-proclaimed church leader who does NOT reflect God's values. Diotrephes looks out for himself and only his works/things/etc; he is not a good leader and even refused to follow other spiritual leaders in authority; we read of his sin in this book, including pride, jealousy, and slander.

I DO NOT want to be like Diotrephes! I don't want my work or leadership to be about me! I do not want to misuse my leadership position... I don't want to take for granted Christian workers who serve faithfully! 

I haven't thought of our last experience much lately... but reading this chapter really opened my eyes to the type of leadership we were under. And that breaks my heart. 

My Application Bible Commentary likens this type of leadership this way: "When a leader makes a habit of encouraging sin (or ignoring it) and discouraging right actions, this leader MUST be stopped. If no one speaks up (or nothing is done when someone does speak up), great harm can be done in the church!"

OH MY!!!!!!!!!!!! It's TRUE! It's TRUE! The church will be in great harm if leaders don't take this position seriously and if we ignore what needs to be done. That's exactly what happened in our situation, and that breaks my heart that the place I called "home" and loved so much is in great harm! Even worse... my "friends" may still be in great harm! 

So my reflection this week is that I am praying that I will not turn into a Diotrephes type of leader. I want fruit that is good, honors God, and that glorifies Him! I'm assuming that God took me through that chapter of my life (enduring a trial) so that I would learn about leadership and positions in the church. And I'm assuming God had me read 3 John because I need to keep in the forefront of my mind just how important my job is and that I am held accountable for the "sheep" under me [I know this is in the Bible... I can't find it right now! LOL! Trust me!]. 

Whatever the reason... I want to be a leader that is a servant like Gaius or Demetrius. 

My goals for this week:
  1. Continue my 3030 Challenge --- I'm in the book of John and super excited about what God's going to reveal to me! Open my eyes and show me great and marvelous things in your Word!!! Psalm 119:18
  2. FINALLY (REALLY!!!!!!!!! I need to do this goal) start chapter 5 of the Dr. David Jeremiah Agents of Apocalypse *This is the chapter where Trav and I can be seen on the TV program Turning Point--- The Dragon! Check out my original post HERE. I'm giving up on this goal! Maybe if I give up, I will actually do it! LOL!
      I pray that God has been speaking to you--- and that you are blessed beyond what you have asked or wanted ❤️. I also am praying that God would open our eyes and heart to His Will, love, and Word. May you go deep{er} with God this week! 

      Remember, if you need prayer, please contact me {savannahland2 at comcast dot net}. 

      THANKS so much for stopping by today! Be blessed:}

      ps... I am asking for prayer this week for our church relaunch service. NHE is having a relaunch party on Sunday, March 22nd. Please pray that all the details will be handled and completed, and that our community would come out and check us out (possibly even consider NHE their home church!)! THANK YOU for lifting us up in prayer ❤️


      Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

      I would have been so EXCITED to see the raccoon out my window!!! "CHESTER!!!" I would have texted to my BFF!! Her and on were in Laughlin, NV. quite a few years ago, and we had gone to take photos of the hotels reflecting off the water at night and a raccoon came over to our truck we were in ... and of course I wanted a photo, so I told BFF to throw him a Cheetos so he would stay for a few minutes ... (hence the name CHESTER, as he is the cartoon character guy for the Cheetos brand! LOL!) ... so she did, he stayed, I took pics ... and then he left, only to return a few minutes later with his whole FAMILY! LOL!! Looking for more Cheetos!!! Me and BFF have never laughed so hard in our lives!! So every time we see a raccoon, we YELL "CHESTER" to each other! LOL!!!!!!!!

      Miriam Prantner said...

      Regarding what has been pulling you down.....you can't be a good example on your own, we only fail when we try.....it's only with God that we can.....don't try and take too much on yourself!