Sunday, December 02, 2007

A Church Home?

I think we may be onto something here. Today was the second week in a row that I attended Beacon Community Church . I had been there before a long time ago , my wife and I went there and for what ever reason we didn't keep going. We did attend a church where her Mom goes ,a Lutheran Church. So any way I have not been attending any church in months, I felt that it was just too hard to try after working Sat. night to get up for an 8:30 a.m. service and , ever since the pastor that married us left the church, things have not been the same. He really made us feel welcome as a family. There was utter & complete acceptance for our sometimes annoying bevy of children. In this one man I think we saw a demonstration of grace that we wanted to emulate and that made "me "want to be there anyway. It was always different after he left and I don't want to sound like I am following after a man, I really try not to fall into that trap.
At any rate we all went to church together this week and it was really good. God spoke to me last week in a way that made me want to come back for more this week and I prodded the other members of this household to go this week,which we did. And this week God spoke to my wife and myself in a special way. We both had the same thought(even though I didn't say it to her) that,"This is the right place for us". Let me explain a little:
One thing that we have both been thinking about is,community and what that might look like here ,now or maybe in the future. How can we play a role in that?
We also have been thinking about what we can change here , in our home to make a difference in our children's lives and our own.
I have started reading a lot of stuff about the Emerging Church, New Monasticism and Post Modernism.
I think that God has put it on our hearts to change the way we think about everything and we have found evidence that this is really what God is doing.
I say ,"I think" not because I doubt what God is telling me, but only because I don't want to make assumptions about what God is telling Johanna, she is her own person unique and different from anyone else .
I know for sure that we agree on much of this stuff. We also went to a David Crowder Band concert for our anniversary and we both love his work and message(especially "Remedy" their new cd) which also talks a lot about works, not that our eternal salvation is about works, but we need to change things. This world is not going to last for our children's children the way we are living and doing business.
So today we went ,the first Sunday of Advent and it was a communion service. I have not taken communion in months (in the Lutheran church we take it every service) and I really needed to be a part of that again, I need to be in a body of believers and be fed with God's word. So any way the "conversation" was about Hope and how that relates to the Christmas story. How we have made it some fairy tale where there is all of this awe & wonder but no despair , no fear. We celebrate Jesus' birth but miss the reason for celebration.
So it was about moving into truth , not denying there are problems or trying to ignore our circumstances but facing fears and and loss and grief . Going head on , hoping in God knowing He loves us and is with us and we will be ok. That God will not fix everything for us but we will be ok. because he cares about us . He will not race to stop every perceived injustice that makes us uncomfortable,on our time table for our whims. But he will rescue us. He may have a different plan than what we think , but his is better anyway.
Also , during communion the guitar player played a song that spoke to both of us . It was familiar , a song by David Crowder "surely we can change" that will tear your heart out and show it to you (especially if you are in the same shape I am in lately)and if you are a lover of God , at some point you will have tears welling up (if you listen to the words).
So , I look over at my wife and she is sobbing. And I could tell that she was Not just distraught but she was feeling like I was and that maybe this is a good place for us. Because our walk with God (I believe ) MUST be personal, and our focus should be outward,but we also need that rest ,that encouragement we get from a corporate worship experience. I don't think that this should be my focus (any longer) but I think I need to be strengthened by that setting ,by others who are trying to walk this path and live the way God wants us to.
So, maybe ; we have found a church home.


Kristen said...

I'm so glad you guys found a church to call home. I hope it works out for you. It reminds me of a conversation I had with Trish, where she told me that you have to find a love connection with a church. And she looked for a long time for that love connection. I'm still looking...

I did listen to some of that sermon you sent me the link for, and I couldn't get past when he insulted the movie "White Christmas." That is a classic in our family!! :-) But I promise to give the pastor another chance and forgive him for his misguided movie prejudices. ha ha

shaun said...

That was the most attractive thing about this guy to me.Not that he hated White Christmas, but he is real , he seems to be very genuine in the way that he speaks about spiritual things. He isn't going to pretend to like something because someone might be offended. I like that honesty.

Johanna said...

That was really really beautiful,and captured what I was thinking exactly