New Background

Can You Hear Me Now?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Refueling My Faith

Back to work tomorrow and while I’m rested…I dread going in to what I’m sure is several days work. The price of vacation…worth it still!

The craft show was not wonderful from a business standpoint, but taught us valuable lessons about the show ‘circuit’ and various ‘hints’ about these shows. The bigger event we’re doing is actually in November, I’m hopeful we’ll have a decent showing then.

In somewhat related news: My husband and I watched some movies last night. One of them was “Click” with Adam Sandler. It had poor sales at the box-office and frankly it is not among my top HALF of favorite movies…but it did offer an important life lesson about something I routinely struggle with.

The movie reminded me that to try to ‘fast forward’ through the routine, dull, or painful things in life; is ultimately eternally detrimental. I thought again about how I wish my weeks away so it can be the weekend and I’m not sitting at my workplace BORED TO TEARS, or worse yet, struggling with some inane policy implementation. This movie reminded me that each experience in our life has purpose and to ‘wish it away’ or not fully live in that moment is only cheating me.

Add to that realization something happened today in church…I’ll share what I can. I don’t know if I’ve shared recently what’s happening with me…and church. In the words of a ‘retro-country song’; “I’ve lost that lovin’ feeling”.

It’s not that I don’t LOVE my pastor and the people in my church…cause I do! Truly…madly…love these people. It’s this awkward feeling I get when I feel the Spirit of God moving…and want to shout or clap or express something and I glance up to a congregation that seems absolutely satisfied in their silent worship and private note-taking without expression. Usually I just clench my eyes closed and let the Spirit guide me…but it’s taking a toll on me.

I have been struggling many Sundays just to get up and GO to church. I’ve disengaged from the women’s group (to an extent), and am not involved in members’ meetings, or outreach activities. (I feel like I’m writing a Dear Abby letter here…so bear with me…it gets better…I promise).

I’m struggling just reading the Word of God regularly. Initially I thought it was related to the whole “god of church” thing I posted about a week or two ago…but now I realize it’s much worse….It’s an attitude issue.

I didn’t want to go this morning but I hear this famous quote in my head that I know you’re familiar with: “Be the change you want to see in others.” Plus I watched this incredible Pastor on television, that I try to watch each Sunday, and he preached about this very issue…the loss of passion in people. He preached about Joshua and Caleb and Jericho. He talked about how Joshua had to endure through what seemed a ludicrous idea to defeat Jericho and He did it with total FAITH!

Side note: Thank you Lord for teaching me again and again through these stories of faith.

So…I’m sitting in church and Pastorman has changed the format and preaches first…and worship and singing are the end of the service…different, but effective. It’s getting near the end and he tells us all to pray that God would reveal to us any ‘idols’ we’re placing above Him and to go and pray about it and just get ‘right with God’. He tells us to find someone to pray with if we need to, and then worship God.

Remember a long, long time ago I posted about a woman I needed to call and check on cause I hadn’t seen her in forever. BTW, I did call and email her but never could touch base with her in person or on the phone. Anyway…I’m standing there singing, I glance over her way thinking…I wonder if I’ll ever get to spend some time with her…and lo’ and behold she came to get me to pray with her.

We went across the hall to a ‘prayer room’ and we visited about her situation and I shared with her about my own lack of passion and God having to break some serious pride off me lately…and we promised each other to practice what AA teaches about accountability and to call one another any time (day or night) when we’re struggling…with the pride issues, or the walls we have built and refuse to remove.

I went back to my seat feeling so loved by God. That He would still choose to use me, even amidst my own self-absorption. God reminded me that no matter where we are…even when we don’t even want to be in church…He will use us. No matter what our own ‘issue’ is…He will use us exactly where we are…if we allow Him room and a heart.

I thanked this woman and told her she was sent directly from God and I mean that. It isn’t always easy for women to be honest about exactly where we are and this woman excels in this open honesty. I know part of it is we’re much alike in temperament, but the bigger part of it is God…He chose to use this woman, this moment, to remind me to “be still and KNOW He is God.”

Have a FAITH-filled Monday and see how God uses you!


Nancy said...

WOW! What a post. Thank you for sharing. You have surely been blessed. God has a way of getting His point across, if we are just tuned in to the Holy Spirit, and willing to listen. Have a great week.

His Singer said...

YES!!! It's great to know that
God appears even when we find ourselves lacking, and that He can use us in whatever state we are! Glad to hear He came through for you...but then we knew He would, didn't we? :0)

Grafted Branch said...

I love this post kp! Love it! What a great day.

GiBee said...

My church sort of used to be like that too ... and I couldn't NOT worship God in the way I felt lead to, so I would raise my hands ... even though I was the only one raising my hands ... or clap my hands ... even though I was the only one.

And you know what? I'm no longer the only one.

I guess others were feeling intimidated too. Isn't it funny how we (okay, ME) sometimes think it's only US that's feeling that way, when in reality ... there are others!

I'm so glad the Lord lifted your spirits and used you as a blessing for someone else!

Morning Glory said...

It's really frustrating to go home from church wondering why you went in the first place. I've done that. But everyone should feel free to express their praise to God, so if you want to raise your hand or say amen, you'll probably bless someone else by doing it.

Personally, I'm one of those who sits and quietly and deeply feels His spirit without showing a lot of emotion. Sometimes I shed tears silently, but you'll never catch me expressing it verbally. I don't look down on those who are demonstrative, and what they say and do is a blessing to me. So, even though some of us feel praise quietly, we appreciate that God moves in many, many ways.

You only have to please God. How wonderful to connect with that woman after all this time!