Creating

I LOVE CREATIVITY!!!!

I recently watched Flea’s induction speech into the rock and roll hall of fame. For some reason I’ve always liked him. When I heard the passion, love and heart that he has it moved me deeply. He said he prays every night to uplift the people he plays for, to love them and to give them the best that he has. That it’s his life’s mission. And music… It’s a burning desire in him. He said he is lost in it when they are playing, he is one with everything, and in that moment he is truly free.

Do you hear it? It’s pure unadulterated passion. Its something inside him that he must do. It brings out beauty and life and vibes and those great, great Chili Pepper tunes. It courses through him, and when I heard him giving the speech I felt it coursing through me.

I think that living out of passion and purpose enables others to begin to desire and live in theirs.

As many of you know, I love Vincent van Gogh. Passion and purpose coursed through him… And let loose on the world through his hands, his paints and his heart. He was a missionary before he was a painter, but he was always an artist. He once wrote, “I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.” He was made to love people. His eyes translated what he saw into works that still move us all these years later. I think it was in a letter to his brother Theo that he said, “Paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painters soul.”

In his words I hear it again. The echo of the eternal being expressed through someone’s purpose, through their passion.

I am searching to find out what my purpose is. What am I made to do?What ignites me inside more than anything else?

I believe I will find it. I believe we will find it. I don’t know how, but I am searching to engage with the passions that have been put into me from the moment of my creation.

I see my generation seeking and finding. Not buying in to how it is supposed to be or “how it has to be”. The “that’s life” kind of attitude. It is no wonder, in these times, that we deal with such depression. Depression, for me, always comes when I feel I am without direction, all alone in my struggling and suffering, without purpose and void of a way to give my love away and receive love in turn.

We’ve got to reset our sights on what God really made us for. He made us to live! Not just to exist!

Dang! It feels good to get that all out!

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Hiding

I’m in that kind of mood these days… Hiding away, thinking a lot, digesting what I read and hear, not having much to say out loud about it. It’s all rolling around me inside, totally alive, but outwardly quiet.

I read a friends post about isolation recently and it so clicked with me that it’s been in the forefront of my thoughts for several days. So freeing to be taken aside through isolation (spiritually). Maybe “taken aside” isn’t the correct description because I don’t feel that I’ve come off the path in this journey. I feel that I’m looking for and finding Jesus.

So many political things I could have been throwing out views on. So many religious views to debate. So many days just slogging through the work day. So many magical moments of encounters with God and people within all of these issues and viewpoints and boring old days.

My main recent decision? I’ve decided that every person is loved by Jesus and that their path to Him will look very different to mine. I don’t care if they believe in Him or not. They don’t have to measure up to my standards. Hell, if I’m honest, I don’t measure up to may standards!!! They are LOVED. And so am I.

Gay marriage? I don’t mind it. It doesn’t threaten me. I feel for them. I feel that if the Christians who truly believe its sin worked on loving those around them, straight or gay or anything in between, the world would be better off because of it. I don’t think the world, or my children, will be better off because of a debate about marriage.

Politics? I don’t have time for the power hungry. I believe politics do play a roll in these times, but not as big a roll as we give them. The undercurrents are full of the presence of God. That’s where I am choosing to look to gauge my life and times.

I’ve taken a leap off the tracks of the discussions about what church is, what should it be etc, etc, etc (thanks to a very concise and beautiful dream that gave me permission to do so!)

I still struggle in my day to day 9 to 5 job, but that’s ok for now. It isn’t heavy like it used to be. I’m hearing some things in my heart, I’m looking at a light at the end of the tunnel.

I love my friends and I miss England a lot these days. Really longing for their company, laughter, depth, and a good night out with them in an excellent pub.

I’m loved by my family and that’s just an awesome feeling. I love and enjoy my husband so much. My sons really do delight me. My parents bless me. I’m rich because of my family.

These are good days. I think it’s going to get better and better from here. I have so much to learn about everything!!!!

Wherever you are in your journey of life I hope you feel loved, I hope you have people around you who love you, and I hope you are continuing to learn to love. Without love, none of this means anything. If I can remember that, I think I’ll not waste my life. (remind me of that on the days I want to strangle my boss, ok??!!??). 😉

Take care, guys. Good night.

on a quiet day I can hear her breathing…

Hadn’t seen this one for awhile. Came across it in one of my old photo files on the computer.  The quote says: “Not only is another world possible. She is on her way. On a quiet day I can hear her breathing.” Arundhati Roy

I love the line of thinking this quote leads me into… Not only is it possible, it’s the truth. If you pay attention you will realize that He is real, and you will know the breath of life from Him. It’s not just on it’s way, it’s here now.  Sweet!

 

the wild goose and the wind

Below is an excerpt from Paul Leader’s post that you can read here.

“It is believed that the Celtic Christians preferred to refer to the Holy Spirit using the metaphor ‘The Wild Goose.’ For them the Holy Spirit was not a quiet, demure bird but a loud and uncontrollable one, which always seems to arrive unexpectedly and does not submit to human authority. Someone once called it the untamable wildness of hope. The word goose comes from the European word ghans, which is said to refer to the sound of honking that the geese make. The word wild is also of European origin, ghwelt, which means untamed or natural. The goose then is a bird of hidden treasure- of spirit in unseen motion, like water flowing underground, until it bursts forth in a spring. Wild is not a word of chaos but one of following it’s own will, making it’s own meaning, sailing on it’s own winds. The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit. It is time for the Wild Goose Chase. We can feel as if we are going around in circles going nowhere, but really we are circling around the elusive and mysterious. Being caught up in the uncatchable, untamable One. This in turn makes us uncatchable and untamable. Join the flight of the wild goose.” (italics are mine)

I love this!!

The other day my two year old son Elijah and I were outside in the afternoon. There was a pleasant breeze blowing. He felt the breeze ruffling his hair and froze with an astounded smile on his face. “Look!” he told me and pointed to his hair. Then he realized that the leaves in the tree were moving to. He was fascinated by it. I told him it was the wind and how the Spirit of God is like the wind. I like telling him about Jesus, I pray it sinks into his little spirit. 

What a cool way for God to explain Himself. What a pleasant and wild feeling it is to be touched by a Presence totally outside of ourselves. Like Eli, it makes me realize that I am being touched and that things around me are indeed moving in a wild way that I cannot predict. I love that about God! The wild goose is such a cool symbol of the Holy Spirit.

who ya gonna bust on then?

I’ve had two experiences lately that have made me think and ask a certain question.

The first is that this week I’ve read a couple of 2012 prophetic words sent out by people who have certain things on their hearts to share. These are not weird freaks, these are people I trust who are just people who love God.  On the flip side, I read the following on this dude’s facebook page… I’m friends with this guy on fb, but I don’t know him. He’s some author guy who I have found to have very thoughtful and profound things to say at times. Here’s a bit of what was posted on his page in the last few days:

Let us begin by clarifying that this is not a “prophecy” for the New Year. We find most such prophecies troubling, because God does not operate on the basis of our subdivisions of time. Not being confined to this time-space world, a day is as a thousand years—and a thousand years are as a day. The more we grow up into Him, the less we will concern ourselves with such “prophecies.”

Since we’ve already gone to meddling, let us continue in this “rant” for a few more moments.
Most prophecies having to do with dates and seasons, “shifts” in the spiritual atmosphere, etc., seem to us to come primarily from those who desperately need a new season or a new shift for reasons of self-interest.[1] They often favor certain geographical locations. There is a prideful propensity to make our town the most important town in God’s heart.

Now, first of all, I find them a bit negative and, to be honest, a little bit condescending to people who do hear from God and experience life in the ways that they are speaking against.  So, hmmmm…

The second experience I’ve had is hearing an American preacher who apparently lives in London and has podcasts on the web.  I listened to one or two of his podcasts this week while sitting at my desk at work.  Their church seems to be alive and open. However, he said something during one particular teaching about how you shouldn’t just sit around and be drunk on God, but should go out and get a job and prepare yourself for what God wants to do in your life (that is my paraphrase of what he said, not a direct quote).  And, since I know people who really are wasted on God and God seems to be enjoying them, providing for them, and really loving through them, I found what the pastor said a bit sad.

So, after these two experiences this week I want to ask the non-2012 prophecy guys and this pastor, what if you’re all right?  What if you hear God the way you hear God? What if the more mystical find God in a more mystical way? What if you were supposed to go out and train for the vocation God said He wanted you in and what if they mystics are supposed to soak and savor?  Who ya gonna bust on then?

It all seems a bit odd to me because these are the ones who teach that we need to make room for the new. Get out of the old mindset. Yet, I hear them being closed or critical to the unknown, the uncomfortable, the less cerebral and the more mysterious.

I’m going to post the rest of that non-prophetic post below.  It kind of makes me sad.  I don’t have the mystical experiences like the guys I know do, but I’m open to God coming to me in that way and I have seen an angel or two myself with my eyes wide open, and smelled Jesus and felt the literal hot fiery love of His presence in the car on the bridge leaving Wales and going back into England. I could list numerous things here that are not logical. Yet, I believe some who haven’t had experiences like those could and indeed do love Jesus and know Him.

Seriously, those who preach to be open to what’s new sometimes shut it down without even realizing it. Or maybe they aren’t that open?

I haven’t posted the names of the pastor/church I’m speaking of or of the three men who submitted the 2012 post I’ve mentioned. I don’t think that would be in the right spirit of things… yet, I do wish I could say what I’ve said here to them. In love. Why? I believe it’s the truth, that’s why.  And I also believe it is why we become tired and jaded.

However, I’m going to keep my heart bowed down to Jesus and my eyes on Him because He brings me massive hope and satisfaction.  These past few weeks have been brutal in so many ways, but so peaceful thanks to Jesus.

Here is the rest of that post I mentioned up above:

To the new covenant creation, Jesus is our “Portal,” the Open Door, the Way, into the heavenlies. We need no other. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He is everywhere all the time! While there remains a significant place for prophets (in the foundation, along with apostles), their role was radically changed in a moment, an instant, on the day of Pentecost when Jesus returned in the person of the Holy Spirit to fill and abide in His church, forever. God now speaks by Him!

Those who are waiting for Him to do something dramatic need to understand that He is waiting for us to do something, in particular:

Come into New Covenant order
Be led by the Spirit
Become disciples
Grow up
Take on responsibility
Fit together with others
Find our identity in Jesus, our function in His body

Questions: Would not such an agenda glorify God and fulfill His purpose? Would not such an agenda extend His kingdom on the earth? Would not such an agenda promote a dramatic response from heaven?

God has chosen to not function in isolation from His creation. He has willed us to be co-laborers with Him in bringing the kingdom from heaven to earth. If we are waiting for a divinely produced cataclysmic occurrence while we neglect to follow the obvious commands He already has given us, we will continue to regard every cloud formation, every earthquake and every windstorm as a sign of the times.

Embracing these challenges will go a long way toward pleasing God and fulfilling His purpose in 2012. We should get a lot more excited about finding and fulfilling our purpose in Christ than in chasing gemstones and angel feathers.

The fullness of Christ in us, together, the hope of glory in the earth, is our New Year’s resolution.

If we pursue the practical, we will experience our share of the mystical. If we pursue the mystical, 2012 will be no different than 2011, or the years before that.

Truth spoken in love,

breaking the monotony

This is my favorite photo that I took today on my lunch break:

Life is too boring without art and photography and kisses and friendship and babies and stories and good food and amaretto sours and dogs and sunlight and ipod touches and big, funky chandeliers.

I love creativity!!  I love discovery.  Even if I have to venture out for 45 minutes at a time on my lunch break to try to take part in and hold of things that help me come to life a little bit at a time, I’ll do it to break the monotony of what sitting in a cubicle does to my mind and spirit.

 

when does a job become a crutch?

When does a job become a crutch that holds you up, but keeps you from walking forward?

When does the fact that a lifestyle or a place sucks the life out of you matter to God?  Am I there to learn a lesson? Am I there because I view my hours and my boss as my provider more than I view God as my provider?

When do these thoughts become dangerous to my family when we can barely make it financially with both of us working full time?  Or do these thoughts finally bring about something God has wanted me (and Patrik?) to realize all along?

Good questions. Questions that I’m asking tonight.  I’ve sat with God and shared my heart with Him.  I’m sure there is more to come.

the timing of who we are (or better, the igniting of the unnoticed things)

This is what God has been telling me is going to happen this year. Finally. To discover the calling to get on with it, get over myself. I feel so relieved that He spoke this. I have been asking for this for so many years, but not so much in words. It’s been more of an aching need that I haven’t often known how to speak, but felt very deeply.

I am becoming more convinced that everything in our hearts is soaked with the presence of the Lord. All our longings, desires, hopes, vision, faith, dreams. All of it. So when He speaks and says something that sparks a recognition in us, it’s because it was our desire and need, even if it was buried deep and we hadn’t even consciously contemplated it yet. That recognition ignites a new pull and life inside that gives vision and makes us so satisfied and hungry and curious at the same time. It feels like a eureka moment inside. It’s as if hearing Him speak caused me to say, ‘Now I know what I was longing for!’ It’s a breath of fresh air and I want to know why He made me. I want to move forward and let the kingdom come, doing my part. Whether I am someone who is seen or unseen, praised or forgotten. I want to know and live in that fullness of life!

tea

When it’s like this outside – freezing cold, rainy and gray – it really, really makes me homesick for England and my friends and life there.

Tonight I’m making myself a nice mug of English tea, and drinking to my time there and to my friends who I miss a lot.

I love all of them.  Sometimes I’m not sure why I had time there, but I suspect that when I get to see things from the other side of life, I’ll understand.  I’ll never regret the time I spent there and I’ll always be thankful that God told me to hop on an airplane, get off in the UK and go from there.