Monday, March 05, 2012

I want to "waste" time in God's presence

This thought came to me today -- especially in regards to how we perceive a good use of time -- does it have to produce something tangible?
I want to "waste" time in God's presence.  Like Mary, not Martha.  I want to achieve a few deep, eternal & meaningful things rather than many things.

I read this from a Joyce Meyer daily reading today...

...because of my busy life, I wasn't spending time with God on a regular basis.  I was doing good things for God, but somehow ignoring Him in the process.  As a result, I often spent time feeling frustrated because I was doing works of the flesh.  

"Works of the flesh" are things we do without God's power flowing through us.  They are difficult, they drain us, and they produce no joy or fulfillment.  They are often good things, but not 'God things'.  

People can literally get burned out on religious activity as they struggle to serve God in their own strength.  But Jesus didn't die for us to have ceaseless activity...He died so that we could be one with God through Him, so we could have a deep personal relationship with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.  

Matthew 11:28-30

The Message (MSG)
 28-30"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly."

Monday, January 03, 2011

A revelation/answer?

Not long after my previous post, my thoughts took me on a garden path trail that lead me to thinking about children's camps and our desire to either manage or be a part of this kind of thing.  As I reflected on this I recognized that when we are dreaming about this or being a part of youth & children's ministry that is when we feel alive.  It then really dawned on me -- a revelation or maybe an answer to my previous questions -- that our passions awaken life & purpose within our souls.  And that when we are not pursuing them it leads to depression and a numbness or death within us.  I felt really strongly that we need to pursue our dreams and passions, that we should follow these things that God has placed in our hearts.  That people are important and will be an integral part of our lives, but that we shouldn't make future decisions or placements based on people or relationships.  Because these will always change, grow and move then we are left wondering.  But if we base our decisions based on what God has placed in our hearts then it is something solid to always go back to.  Sure, people are very important, and not to be treated lightly or like resources, and they will journey with us along the way, some for a short time, and others for longer.
The other thing that I realized after this, is that we can also be encouragers in other people's lives to keep on pursing the dreams and goals that God has placed in their hearts.  We are all so good at getting comfortable and sitting on our dormant goals and dreams.  Another facet of our lives and camping ministry can be to encourage others to pursue what God has created them to do, to live their lives following their passions and dreams.  I found this picture the other day that makes this very point and is a great reminder to not succumb to everyday numbness!

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Random Thoughts

Normally my thought processes tend to go from A-B and in other linear directions.  At the moment they seem to be all but linear, as I go round & round in circles, tangents & diverging to each pendulum swing and back.  Life seems to be at some sort of crossroad, but one which we are camping at, rather than standing and choosing a path to go down. I have no doubt we will choose a path at some stage, but it seems at the moment as though we are stuck here for awhile.  On one hand I feel very strongly that I don't want to waste my life just collecting stuff for myself, yet I have a very strong urge to enjoy the good things of life, one of which I believe is family.  Christmas & New Years are times that you feel this even more than other times.  There is a longing and ache in my heart for this, but I also feel that my life can't be dictated by this.
I am also stirred by the people in this world who are less fortunate than I, for the people who are marginalized and who have no voice.  In my own brokenness I can be stand up for them, and help to bring justice.
Are these two things incongruous?  Can I feel happy, safe & welcome in a family and then reach out, or do those things make us complacent so we just stay within our happy confines and either forget about or pay money toward those 'other' people that pop up on our screens every now & again.
What to do? What to think? How to act? I don't want life to be complicated, I just want to love, live & enjoy, but it seems as though my thought processes get in the way of doing this.  Yet people who don't think might have a simple life but would that satisfy me???
I have come to learn in life that there are only a few people with whom are comfortable with you asking all of these questions.  Living life in question for some people seems confrontational.  But for me it is not necessarily about finding the answers but merely in just no holding anything too tightly.
I also find when I have too much time on my hands, then I begin to think too much too -- I wonder if this is a good thing???