In my earlier post I told you about a local church that had ASKed others to pray and submit ideas about how they might allocate and distribute $10k. Spending the 10k wasn’t the real goal. The goal of the church was to pray and have unity about what God wants them to do with these funds. The church leadership will be meeting this weekend to review and discuss each merit of each submission.
Following the church leadership’s review, a summation letter will be mailed to each church member asking each to SEEK truth/discernment. Each member will then share their views and in late Sep. the church body will hold a “business meeting” to vote. KNOCK – persistence in getting ‘er done. Now its time to join KCC as they enter this new season of prayer.
Jesus declared God’s name to His followers so that the love of the Father that was in the Son (Jesus) might me in us (Jhn 17:26). Imagine if churches partnered in declaring God’s truth, sharing His love, and caring for His people. One expression of truth/love might be to take the 10K of one church and make it 20K or even 100K through a partnership with other churches. United in love! There would be some serious worship, prayer, and fellowship taking place!
Learning love, sharing love…making disciples! Wow!
Posted in General/Administration, Prayer, Service/Volunteerism, Share/Declare
Tagged Anacostia, Central Union Mission, Charity, Christian, Christianity, Church, Clergy, community, DC, Denominations, Dialogue, Earth, Funds, Giving, God, holy spirit, hospitality, humility, Jesus, Love, Missions, money, Prayer, Religion and Spirituality, Theology, United States, Washington DC
Matthew 18: 19-20 tells us “I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”
People gather for a variety of reasons. Regardless of the reason, there exists a wonderful possibility/opportunity that capacity will be realized. Capacity is not ability, capability, or magnitude… these are qualitative. Capacity is quantitative…it refers to a general ability to comprehend an issue or perform a task.
We love to gather to pray in corporate settings. I’m puzzled why we fail to actually take the time (either before/after prayer) to dialogue …do we agree? How might we share our gifts (to lay down our lives for a friend)?
Because God is in our midst we miss the opportunity/possibility to build capacity. God is capacity (“I am”).
Posted in General/Administration, Prayer, Service/Volunteerism, Share/Declare
Tagged Anacostia, Capacity, Christian, Christianity, Church, Clergy, community, DC, God, holy spirit, hospitality, humility, Jesus, Love, Pastor, Prayer, Religion and Spirituality, vision, Washington DC
Recently I’ve given a lot of thought to the differences between “order” and “structure’. Order identifies what comes before or after. Structure refers to recognition, stability of patterns, and relationships of entities. God creates and reveals both.
Have you noticed how people gather to discuss order (what comes before or after)? Most gatherings hing on that context. Ideas are tossed around and a plan/agenda is made. Programs are born.
God has already ordered what comes before and after. Perhaps if we focused first on the structure (the relationship) between God and each other our dialogue would change, our minds would be renewed, and we would realize transformation (Romans 12:2). Community would replace fragmentation and we would create future instead of define future. We would focus on generosity and hospitality instead of fixing problems.
My hat’s off to Peter Block who has augmented the Bible with his intuitive book “Community: The Structure of Belonging“. In it Peter defines various ways of structuring experiences of belonging. While Peter has provided various ways, the Bible gives us the way, the truth, and the life (Jesus). Both books are an excellent read – enjoy them!
Sitting in Panera (one of several places that serve as a part-time office). As usual great Hazelnut coffee and pastries. I needed to catch up on a lot of writing so decided I’d escape from “appointments” and have a “me day”.
The past weeks have been filled with those little moments where others have said or done some little tid bit that has caught my attention. I spend nearly two-thirds of my time listening to the visions of others; each vision is unique and each person has little obstacles that keep him/her from realizing their vision. Most of the obstacles are perceived and not real. The only true solution is to help each direct their sights to God’s vision not to some strategy or problem solving scheme.
One special moment was a phone call from a friend who has made some very tough choices in order to be available so He could hear God and let God unfold what was to take place next in his life. His willingness to let God be God and step aside from his own desires has spoken volumes to me about how deep his love is for God. He still hasn’t realized his vision, but God has opened the door to an opportunity that fits so well into his understanding of God’s plan that you know his faithful, patient reliance on God has been rewarded. It’s truly a “God thing”.
My wife knows my friend well. After I shared the gist of his phone call with her she quietly asked “how’s that going in your own life?” Bam! Nothing left to add. Nothing left to say. God has truly blessed me with an adventure, wonderful friends who only care about what Jesus has in store for them, and a super wife!
Posted in Prayer, Share/Declare
Tagged accountability, blessing, Christian, Church, Clergy, coffee, community, friend, God, holy spirit, Jesus, Love, Panera, Pastor, spouse, Washington DC, wife
Kudos to Mattress Discounters in Alexandria – they were very accommodating in arranging for a new mattress, box spring, and frame!! God is good!!
When we get out-of-the-way and let the Holy Spirit work the results are always better than expected. When hearts are convicted, and the motive is simply loving our neighbor as ourself, miracles take place. I think we miss most miracles simply because we aren’t taking the time to relish in any down time – we’re always on the go.
I have puzzled over why we easily want to give our “used extras” to those in need. Does loving others as ourselves mean as we are – I don’t sleep on a used mattress and I don’t wear clothes from the thriftshop (well that might not be true – my wife finds great savings at such places so I might be wearing used clothes and I’m to dumb to realize it) – there is nothing wrong with “used extras” – but if we love others as ourselves, as we would want to be treated, is it right to give folks in need “used extras”? I haven’t resolved this yet, so feel free to chime in and share your thoughts.
I continue to travel to DC several days a week to pray and mingle with the pastors, business, government, and nonprofit folks. Some are residents, some are not. I spend at least one night each week at a pastor’s home or sleeping on a couch or floor of a nonprofit. I go with expectation and each week I have various “wow” moments. I’m surprized how many pastors I continue to meet without calling/emailing to make an appointment. Each time that happens it’s a “wow” moment and I’m always anxious to see why God wants us to spend time together.
It has taken several days to get this set up this far. A bit frustrating, but it’s learn as you go. Christmas music playing behind me regardless of where I was sitting with my laptop, determined to make one more dent in getting this blog site ready to launch. I was fair and rotated between the various free wi-fi spots in my neighborhood (Panera Bread, McDonald’s, Starbucks, and Caribou Coffee). It was in Panera Bread that I met a young couple as we shared table space and free wi-fi. I surmised they were not married but had a serious relationship, after all she was filling out a new passport application for him (he had lost his original passport). As we exchanged small talk he told me he worked as a consultant for the federal government, she seemed to hang on his every word – love was definitely in the air. I joked a bit and asked her if this was the year he was going to pop the big question (marriage). She nervously laughed and quickly changed the topic to movies they had seen recently. Having just seen the movie Avatar (be sure to go see the 3D version) I asked them if they saw any spiritual value in the movie. They were a bit amused and he even stated that this seemed an unusual question. I explained that when I saw the movie I couldn’t help but think about what an avatar is and how it lives; having an ability to live a life and dreams through another image. Isn’t that what followers of Jesus do when we live and trust IN Jesus? What a liberating thought – freedom and endless opportunities. Seems like the perfect take on Christmas. I’m not suggesting that Jesus is an avatar – let’s just not go there! I am suggesting that to know God is to “see” God (if you’ve seen the movie you’ll understand what “I see you” means). The couple listened closely as I briefly and in a non threatening way explained the true meaning of Christmas (Jesus). They had to leave but I made sure they had my contact information and uttered a silent prayer that our discussion would nudge them to test their faith and how their faith makes a huge difference in their lives and the lives of others.
As I write this it has dawned on me how critical it is that we make sure what we say (even as we blog or twitter) has value. Jeremiah 15 (Msg) states “Use words truly and well. Don’t stoop to cheap whining. Then and only then, you’ll speak for me. Let your words change them. Don’t change your words to suit them. I’ll turn you into a steel wall.”