Sunday, April 26, 2009

Who Forgets About Their Wedding Cake???

Me! I love sweets, I love candy, I love desserts, so how on earth could I have forgotten about my own wedding cake? We know what I’ll be doing tomorrow. Along with bridesmaid shoe searching, reception list making, and flower ordering. One step at a time.

The last two months have been quite interesting. A couple friend of ours got engaged on Tuesday and it was like living the happiness and excitement all over again. I feel like it should be too soon to say, “Remember when we got engaged…” but that’s what we said! haha. Everything is still a fresh memory, but life has a way of solidifying those memories with real life happenstances. Those joys and feelings of love have quickly been tested by the roots of commitment and selflessness.

I led worship last weekend at our Women’s Retreat and the last day I shared about what I was currently learning in the Word of God. At the time is was a small lesson that I did not know was going to grow into the cornerstone of my future marriage. The lesson was this: God gives every human being a calling…every woman, every man. But when God has called a woman into marriage, her primary ministry and service to God transfers from those around her to her husband. In their marriage, he becomes the minister. He becomes the hands and feet, the mouth and wisdom of their relationship and she serves him as unto the Lord. Now this is not a power issue, nor is it a “all women should be seen and not heard” speech. Me of all people would never in a million years agree with those statements. However, the Lord fashioned me, shaped me, molded me to fit this man who He fashioned, shaped, and molded to fit me and together we complete the work He has called us to. I think I got to a point in my life where “the next step” was a godly man who could take me, take us, where I had never been before; musically and spiritually. He is now our leader. The responsibility is on him to seek the Lord for the direction of our lives and my responsibility is to pray for him as he leads. He has a huge responsibility:

“Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish…” Ephesians 5:25-7

Our husbands (future husbands) now have the responsibility to present us (wives, future wives) blameless before God, just as Christ will with the Church. Can you imagine?! But I know and I believe the God has bestowed grace upon such a sinful mankind that he will be able to accomplish the task. We are their helpers. We are their prayer warriors.

Now, I hope that you can see the image of my tear stained face between these typed lines because I have not lived up to this. It is not until recently that I have begun to live in a daily battle with my stubborn mind, my wounded heart, and my broken spirit to allow Tyson to lead me. And I know I am not alone. How many of us are afraid to trust? How many are afraid to allow someone to determine the direction of your life? How many live in fear of the plethora of possible mistakes he could make? ME! But I truly believe God honors the praying, believing woman. That is what LOVE is:

“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
~1 Corinthians 13:7

It bears the burdens of life. It believes in the ability and the heart of your husband. It hopes for the best, giving the benefit of the doubt. And it endures the trials and troubles that come with the package.

This is love.

And for those of you who are single or dating, pray for your future husbands. Do not obtain this attitude of independence because it can easily turn to pride and arrogance…been there. Done that. Join with me as we, together, live into the humble power of prayer and love for the men in our lives.


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Power of the Cross

It has been a while since I have written and for that I apologize. It is so easy for me to forget the great importance of mellow, reflective down time. Last week and the week approaching finds Tyson and I very busy with work and church, but it’s a good busy because this week is the passion week; the week of events leading up to Christ’s horribly gruesome death and glorious resurrection. (For a list of the events for this week click here.)

As many of you know, today is Palm Sunday; the day that Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey welcomed by the Jews as their King. He was the one they had waited for. “Hosanna!” they cried (meaning: God save now), for they knew Jesus was sent to save them. But much to their surprise and dismay, Jesus was not coming to redeem them in the manner they had expected a great King to. Instead of over-throwing the Roman Empire, Jesus’ life portrayed humble submission and peace. The same Jesus they were worshipping and clinging to one day was the same Jesus they demanded crucified the next. Even pagans found no wrong in Him, yet because the people were so adamant, they ordered him crucified. (Luke chapters 22-24)
Bearing the treacherous pain and agonizing torment, the wrath of God was poured out upon the innocent lamb of God. Think about that for a second….God did not spare His own Son…His perfect Son…His beloved Son…All because of His sovereign and righteous judgement and amazing grace. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is all about grace. The message of the Bible is all about grace. The purpose of life is all about grace. John Piper says this about Jesus’ death and resurrection:

“Christ did not die to forgive sinners who go on treasuring anything above seeing and
savoring God. And people who would be happy in heaven if Christ were not there, will
not be there. The gospel is not a way to get people to heaven; it is a way to get people
to God. It’s a way of overcoming every obstacle to everlasting joy in God. If we don’t
want God above all things, we have not been converted by the gospel.”

Jesus did not endure what He did just so the population of heaven could rise. He came, died, and rose again for the purpose of bridging the gap between sinful man and a holy God. And in bridging that gap, He conquered death, sin, and condemnation by rising again through it all! He came to set the pace of a greater, more satisfying life of freedom from the bondage of the law. The freedom of grace. For me, it is not an option to live life without my Savior. It would be merely impossible. “If God is God—and He is—small with him is better than big with anybody. His old things are better than anybody’s new things. Being his child is better than having the world. And better to be blind with the invisible God than to see everything without him.” (John Piper) The gospel gives us a new life! It literally means for me to have a perspective change in EVERY area of my life. To refocus upon the cross of Jesus and the holiness of God. Who am I but a sinner saved by the grace of a loving and just God?
I cannot change my way of thinking, I am prone to sin.

It is the power of the Gospel that transforms lives and many of us bear witness to that.

So this Easter, what will you be celebrating?

How is the power of the Gospel transforming your life?

(Some extra reading: Romans 1:16; Romans 8:32; 1 Corinthians 1:18-31)
^^^Opinions, two-cents, questions and ramblings are welcome. And go above. Go ahead. Try it.

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