Since I decided to go from blogging privately to blogging publicly, it was time for a fresh start – a new blog, some new components, everything!
Taking part in Heather @The Extraordinary Ordinary’s weekly Just Write is one of the two weekly blogging link-ups I decided to do to expand my little corner of the blog world beyond my former very small private home in the bloggy world. I’m looking forward to getting to know others in the process!
I have to have a lot of conversations this next week or so that I know will be difficult.
I will do the right thing – no matter what – but it’s going to mean conversations that will be a challenge and will certainly require a lot of grace. And a lot of stretching.
As such, the day including a lot of praying, talking things through with some fellow staff who I trust to give Godly counsel, and more prayer. The rest of the week will be full of the same.
Along with much more prayer.
And lots of grace. And lots of wisdom.
Doing the right thing isn’t always the popular thing. If I had any question about that, this week will remove any of it! But it’s the right thing. Always.
I already knew there were two hard conversations forthcoming.
Now there are three more needing to happen.
And with a deadline on them.
Nothing like pressure!
Last year, from our respective homes on opposite sides of the world, a dear friend and I committed to memorizing Philippians. So much about that book speaks to how we live. Although I memorize in the NIV, I read in multiple translations simultaneously, plus Spanish – and when I’m really wanting to read something and ponder it, I look at it in four translations plus Spanish.
I’ve fallen in love with a funny little book, Note to Self – a bit along the lines of Jesus Calling, only different.
The one taken from Hebrews 3:12-13 on “Speak to Others” spoke to this well when I read it today:
It is not enough to just be around others, maintaining politeness and pleasantries. You must be connected to others more deeply, in true community, where you are doing life together and pursuing the same purpose together…You will be called to do more than be aware of their needs and pray for them. That much is relatively easy. At times you will need to open your mouth and speak. And this can only happen in the context of community.
I’ve been intentional about creating community, including with those with whom these difficult conversations will need to happen. But I particularly loved Thorn’s reminder that that, at times, means a whole lot more than simply being aware of their needs and praying for them. He ended that note:
Your usefulness to God and His people is connected to your dependence on God and His Word and your love for His people. The people around you need to hear from you. Share God’s Word with those who need to hear it.
Note to Self p. 85, Joe Thorn
Rereading Philippians, I was struck by how great the verses are not only for how I live, but also for this particular situation. As I sit down with each of the individuals involved in the various situations that have arisen over the next week and a half or so, I sense these words are ones that may be good to share and to present as a challenge.
What I’m getting at, friends, is that you should simply keep on doing what you’ve done from the beginning. When I was living among you, you lived in responsive obedience. Now that I’m separated from you, keep it up. Better yet, redouble your efforts. Be energetic in your life of salvation, reverent and sensitive before God. That energy is God’s energy, an energy deep within you, God himself willing and working at what will give Him the most pleasure… Go out into the world uncorrupted, a breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God. Carry the light-giving Message into the night…
What a great challenge:
- Live in responsive obedience
- Even redouble your efforts in doing so
- Be energetic in your faith
- Be reverent and sensitive before God
- Be an uncorrupted example to the world
- Be a breath of fresh air in the sinful world around you
- Be an example of good living
- Be an example of the living God
- Be an example of His light and love and Word
And that? Will bring Him glory.