Blue Parakeet…

The next grand installment is coming to Church Remix.  Zondervan was offering about 100 free copies of Scot McKnight‘s new book, Blue Parakeet, to bloggers. I am excited to announce that my copy is on its way and as soon as it does the posts will be rolling in.

I am also thinking that I will be posting thoughts, random or otherwise, from my Older Testament class this semester. I think that there might be some useful insights from those earlier incarnations of the people God.  What do you think?  Just maybe?

That’s where things are headed.

>This One’s for the Ladies

>

Every word I believed in
till I felt it in my own heart
in the deepest part
the healing came -Sara Groves

Posted by Robin Schmidt on August 20th, 2008

There are women in our lives that intimidate us. We are awed by their beauty or their gifts or their strength or their popularity and we pull back. We are afraid to approach. We are afraid of rejection. “She doesn’t want to talk to me,” we think.

Last night I told my daughter the secret, a truth that we really need to get. I told her that every girl on her swim team, every girl she sees in high school, feels the same way she does. Every one of them is afraid of making a mistake, afraid they are not pretty enough, afraid that zit is neon, afraid they will be rejected. Every one of them doubts they are worthy to be loved.

And so do you. And so do I. But we need to believe the truth, in the deepest part of our hearts.

What is the truth? The truth is that you are beautiful. You. Right now.

Not that you once were, or you might be if you shed a few pounds, or you can be with a little effort. Right now, as you are, you are beautiful.

There’s more.

You have a purpose. You come with a perspective and thoughts and gifts and talents that are needed.

But sometimes you actually believe that you were meant to live in comparison with others. You decide your worth, beauty, talent on a sliding scale, based on your assessments of the others around you.

You are wrong. So am I.

Yesterday I drove to work crying. Really crying. Not just tears, but ‘cover your mouth because crying makes you look ugly’ crying. I was drowning. There is a darkness that swirls around me and chokes me. Sometimes it has a name: grief, stress, hormones. Sometimes it doesn’t. It doesn’t really matter because drowning is drowning. And I was.

When was the last time you were drowning? I watched a battle recently, I couldn’t actually hear the lies, but I saw them on the face of a woman who believed she wasn’t useful, wasn’t pulling her weight.

The lies can go very deep. They may have been planted by someone important to you, like your mom or dad, or a close friend, or an old boyfriend, or the kids in high school, or a teacher. And you trusted that person and you believed them. They said, you are ugly, worthless, fat, stupid, you can’t sing, you can’t…

And you have spent a lot of time and energy trying to change those things, trying to fight against the lies, trying to hide, because you want to be worthy of love.

But hear me women, hear me, this is the truth:

You are loved.

You.

Are loved.

You are special.

You.

Right now.

This is the truth. You must believe it, because it is the truth you are meant to take to other women. Other women who have been hurt, hampered, crippled by lies and doubts.

Next to you there is a woman who believes some lie about herself. You must believe the truth. You must believe it in the deepest part of your heart so the healing comes. And when it comes, share the healing.

Max Lucado wrote a very good book. It is called “You are Special”. It is about this truth. And it is about believing this truth. The truth that the One who made you took special care to make you. He designed you with care and with purpose. And He has looked at His creation, He has looked at YOU and said, She is good.

I am not making this up.

You are beautiful. You can’t create this beauty, it doesn’t come from cosmetics. It doesn’t come from diets.

You are loved. You can’t earn this love. You are loved on your best day and on your worst.

This is the truth, because this is God.

You must believe it.

Communion…now this is good…

My son and I were worshipping together on Sunday and being the first Sunday of the month we partook in Communion.  As the elements came to us, he smiled at me and we had the following conversation:

Ethan: Do I get some of that?

Me: No son.  We need to make sure that you truly follow Jesus by faith and that you believe that he is your Lord and that he has forgiven you.

Ethan: I do Dad.

Me: Well, you have to get up with Pastor Doug and tell everyone that you do.

Ethan: By myself?

Me: Yep.

Ethan: I’m not ready for that Dad, but I can’t wait!

Amazing!  This ties the whole thing together for me.  We have confused the sacraments. For believing children communion is the place for the public proclamation of their faith.  For the new convert it’s baptism.

Can you imagine what that day will be like when he stands before the world and proclaims his faith in the risen Messiah and claims him as his own and then joins with the community through The Meal?

Infant baptism, communion, all tied together.  This is the beautiful way.  This is the covnenantal way of our promise keeping and ever faithful God!