Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What does it really mean?

There have been a couple of issues that I have been struggling with "the church" in recent months/year.

What does it really mean to love the sinner and hate the sin? Do we really know or has that phrase become so cliche we just slap the phrase onto any situation like a band-aid no matter how big the wound?

What does it really mean to be a Christ-follower? Does it mean that Jesus has a political party? Does it mean that we conform to whatever church culture is at the time?

What does it really mean to go and make disciples? Are we going and making? Or are we sitting and hoping? Am I going and making? Do we really know what's going on in the community around us or do we just think, "if you build it they will come?"

What does it really mean that Jesus loves everyone and died for them? Do we really mean that or do we mean, "Jesus loves those that are like me?"

What does it really mean to take care of the poor and the widows? Are our "missions funds" doing what we should be doing with our own hands and feet? Are we putting our money where our mouth is instead of putting our actions where our mouth is?

What does it really mean when we say the Gospel is transformational? Has it changed our lives or do we use that as a crutch for legalism..."Because I'm saved, I have to be better than everyone else"?

No answers, just thinking....

Monday, May 11, 2009

Weekend in a Nutshell... with exclamation points.

17 Again! Track and Field Day! Ponca City! Messiah Mustangs! Farmers Tan! (Awesome.) Sonic! Saii to Go! Senior Slide Show! Senior Recital for E. Halley! El Reno! Trolley Cars! Tiny Hotels! Walking! Grocery Shopping! Live music @ the Grocery Store! SNL! Justin Timberlake! Sunday School! Senior Recognition Sunday! Jason's Deli with Jessie! Coffee Shop! PAss the Pigs! Mafia! Rain! Amazing Race! Laundry (woo.)

The End.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Shout-Out To Bismarck!

So, I recently got google analytics and checked it today.

Apparently, someone from Bismarck, ND is a blog reader o' mine. So, Hey, welcome to Hannahlysis you Bismarckian!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Child-like faith

Last night, during High School Small Group, after talking about how we were going to move forward during the summer and the next year, how and if we would be dividing our combined group, we took some time to say a prayer for our small group leader who passed away at the beginning of the year.

There was a lot of silence and a lot of tears, but it was a good time to remember and honor this loved leader. Robyn, Darren's wife and the four kids (2 high schoolers and 2 younger children, 6 and 4) were in attendance as well.

To close our small group, we took prayer requests and did the traditional pray around the circle (youth take specific prayer requests and everyone else prays at least one sentence). One of our high schoolers had requested that we pray for her family as her dad has been traveling a lot more for work and she misses having him around. As we went around the circle, Darren's 6 year old son prayed for this high schooler that their dad could be home more often because, "she misses him and it is good to have your dad around as much as he can be;" soon after, Darren's 4 year old prayed, "Dear God, Thanks for making my Dad."

I think that I underestimate how aware children are of certain situations. I always knew that the young ones missed their dad but I wasn't sure how much they really felt/understood about it. I always assumed that they were cushioned from feeling the full effects of grief because they were young. That they somehow missed their father less because they weren't old enough to feel more/know more.

Last night's experience was humbling. Not only did this 6 year old know and understand what exactly was going on in his life, but he knew enough to pray for a different outcome for his older brothers' friends. His sweet, sincere prayer was for someone else.

Amazing Child-like Faith. I wish I could be as selfless and caring in all circumstances.

Good Things/Hard Things

The things that were good about this weekend:
A real day off
Grocery Shopping
Ihop with the cousin Amanda as they were driving through, meeting her hubs.
The High School Praise Team leading worship at 9:30
High School Small Group and child-like prayers
The ability to mourn and move forward at the same time
A spirit of contentment/commitment from our youth as they plan the next time they lead worship
Ships and Sailors/The Body Parts Game/Rock Band/Mingle Mingle

The hard things:
Taking communion from someone who is displeased with my work (it's not my pastor)
Mourning and Moving Foward at the same time
Listening to "criticism" about plans for next year
Seeing certain things not work and not knowing how to fix them.
Seeing youth that were once outsiders excluding those that are now outside.