Saturday, June 27, 2009

In The Zone

God calls us to change. No question about it. When you find Christ, God immediately begins ridding you of the things that don't resemble the qualities of Christ.

If you let Him.

I was eager to give Him my anger, my pride, my jealousy.....all of the things that would make my life 'easier' if they would go away. Who wants to be angry or prideful or jealous? All of those things lead to bigger, uglier things in our lives. They are obvious stumbling blocks.

BUT....what about when God wants to do something in our lives that makes us uncomfortable? What about when the change isn't something that 'appears' to be hurting us? What about when He calls us to reach out to somebody that we just aren't comfortable reaching out to? Somebody who is maybe a little different than ourselves. Somebody who 'rubs' us the wrong way? What do we do when that somebody wants to infiltrate our little circle of friends? Do we embrace them with the Love that Christ has shown us? Do we extend that Grace even when we know we may have to spend time with someone who makes us uncomfortable? It pains me to say that more often than not.....I don't.

As Christians, we are all about living the 'Great Commission':

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations......"
Matthew 28:18

We love to go to faraway places and help those who are less fortunate. We offer food to the hungry, money to the poor, and wells to the thirsty. We adopt children from other countries and bring them to America or send money, monthly, to children who already have parents, but live in a place where they will never have anything. Every single one of those acts pleases Christ when done with a right heart. And....every single one of those acts makes us feel good. But....what about when God calls us to spend time with that person whose personality just doesn't 'mesh' with ours? Are we still willing to be so obedient when living the 'Great Commission' doesn't feel so good?

Jesus hung out with a lot of people during His time on earth. There were so many different personalities around Him constantly! Even His disciples, who all loved Him and wanted to follow Him, all had different personalities. No wonder He frequently went off by Himself and prayed. Notice the Bible doesn't have all of Jesus' prayers in it? I have always thought it was because of the intimacy of those prayers between the Father and the Son. I'm beginning to wonder if Jesus was praying something like:

'Father, I know you placed Judas in my life because He is part of Your plan, too....
BUT he is sooooo greedy. It's all about him. He only cares about money and frankly
I just don't think he gets what being a follower of mine is all about!!!'

I know that the One who calls me to be more like Him, would never ask me to do something He hasn't already done. He asks me to extend Grace to those He puts in my path, despite the personality differences, because He extends it to me. He calls me to love those that are hard for me to love because He loves them. He calls me out of my comfort zone because He gave up the Throne of Heaven to dwell among us. His entire life, here on earth, was 'out of His comfort zone'.

I have been convicted. He beckons me to reach out. Not just to a lost world, a hungry child, or a homeless man/woman, but to my brothers and sisters in Christ who may look and act a little different than me. Those who may make me a little uncomfortable because God had the audacity to gift them with a personality unlike my own.

Thank you, Lord for making each one of us unique. Help me learn to step outside my 'circle of friends', embrace differences, and most of all.........make my comfort zone....uncomfortable!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Still Learning...

Jordan really struggles with math! She has had a really hard time learning multiplication and now we are working on division. She is a couple of grades behind on math, but I'm not in a panic...yet. I realize that someday it's just going to click with her. However.........

Knowing that she will get it someday does not ease my frustration with her today. It seems like everyday I have to show her how to do the same thing over and over. She gets it one day and the next......she has forgotten. Some days it just drives me crazy!

Today, I find myself wondering.....

Does my lack of being able to learn something, after He has tried to teach me over and over again, frustrate God?

It seems that God has to continually teach me the same things over and over and over. I wonder if God is sitting up there saying things like:

"Come on Heather! We just went over this last week!"

"Don't you remember when I dealt with your pride last time and you said you got it this time?"

"Really? You're struggling with that anger issue again? How many times are we going to go through this???"

The thought of it almost makes me chuckle. Almost. The truth is.....I am a sloooooowww learner. There are issues that God has been trying to rid me of for the past 8 years and I am STILL trying to learn them. I guess I need to cut my daughter some slack when she can't remember to bring down the 2. She has only been learning division for a couple of months;)

Thank you Lord for being the most patient teacher and for allowing me the opportunity to teach my children at home. Fill me with Your Spirit as I instruct my children in Your ways. OH....and please help Jo to learn division faster than I learn my lessons........because 8 years of division might just cause me to lose it!

I'm Accepted.....

Around a month ago I received a phone call from the admissions guy at Crown College....where I had applied to become a student in the fall. He was calling to let me know that the reason it was taking so long to process my app is because they have to get 'special permission' for me to attend. My heart began to sink as I knew what he would say next.

In high school I wasn't exactly a great student. OK..that may be a slight understatement. I was an awful student. At one point, my GPA was .69. No, that wasn't a typo. I cared much more about hanging with my friends and partying than I did getting my school work done. I graduated by the skin of my teeth and now it was coming back to haunt me.

Admissions guy told me it would probably be a couple of weeks until he could get a hold of head guy that needs to OK my admission. So, I would probably have to wait for a month until I heard anything. I got off the phone with admissions guy a little worried. However, God quickly reminded me Who is in charge. I sent up a prayer and decided that if this is truly God's Will then there will not be a problem.

Two weeks later........I received my acceptance letter:) It's conditional. I have to take at least 12 credits per semester and I have to maintain a 2.0 GPA. I'm going to college!!!!!

I am still waiting to hear from financial aid. I have to admit....I'm nervous. I am needing financial aid to come through in a HUGE way! BUT.....I know Who is in charge and I'm placing it in His hands.