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Therese

I just finished watching the movie Therese for the second time since it was given to me. For the second time since it was given to me, it has made me cry. If you want to be provoked, this is a movie worth watching. It is not exactly the most expensive, the best produced or best acted film out there, and I admit it’s colored through the glowing admiration that biographical works tend to portray. But right now, I really don’t care. It is an absolutely lovely film that pierces me every time.

For those who haven’t seen it, the central character is Therese of Lisieux, a young woman in who lived in France in the late 1800’s who became a Carmelite nun. Her autobiography is a spiritual classic in Catholic writings. This is a girl who really gave herself to loving Jesus by living out the Sermon on the Mount.

Two particular parts of this movie get to me. The first is when she is entering into the monastery at age fifteen. I have cried both times here, identifying a little too closely with what it’s like to leave my father’s house to pursue my calling in God. But that’s not primarily the part I wanted to blog about. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 15, 2008 in Eternity, Heart Stuff, Intimacy with God

 

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Overcoming Loneliness

Okay. Can I just say that Stuart Greaves kicked my tail in FCF this Sunday. Perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I definitely had a couple moments of feeling like he was preaching the sermon straight at me. The rest of the room just thought it was a general message. Except that, come to think of it, what I just said is part of the problem he addressed. “Overcoming loneliness.”

Loneliness is something I’ve struggled with off and on throughout my life. Sometimes I couldn’t help it (like the years-long stretch of my childhood where — long story — I literally had no friends). Sometimes I definitely could have helped it, but didn’t (like the years I spent being too blasted timid to speak to anyone). Lately, it’s been more of a nuisance than a real-deal slump. I’ve had semi-regular bouts with it, but it hasn’t been totally messing up my life like it used to.

But since God seems to be in the mood of bringing a lot of my emotional junk up to the surface lately, the timing on this sermon couldn’t have been more priceless. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2008 in Heart Stuff, Intimacy with God

 

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Solitude vs. Isolation

This is not going to be too in-depth, since it’s something I’m still musing over. Pardon me while I think aloud; hopefully it will be edifying for someone besides me. 🙂

I’ve been thinking about solitude a lot lately. I’m an introvert, and prone to be a bit of a loner if I don’t watch out for it. I live in an awesome community. I have beyond-amazing roommates. Yet lately, I find myself wanting to withdraw from all of it. Especially when I’m sitting in my anti-sound-proof house. No, I’m serious. We don’t need to install an intercom system, because we already have air ducts, and they work just as well. I’m in a coffee shop right now because I was in my room and got tired of trying to not eavesdrop on the conversation in our kitchen. Anyway. Where was I? Oh yeah, solitude…

As you can tell, I am somewhat less than objective about this at the moment. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 9, 2008 in Heart Stuff, Intimacy with God

 

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Another Reason the Kingdom is for the Childlike

Have you ever seen two babies interacting together? There are three little guys and one little gal on the KC NightWatch right now. I love seeing when two parents will bring their babies together, and just watch their faces. Their little eyes are wide, and excited squeals ensue. It’s as if they’d never seen another baby before. In a world full of giant, grown-up people who can walk and talk and feed themselves and do all sorts of things that a six-month-old can’t yet understand, it must be terribly exciting to meet someone else your own size. I can just imagine the thrill of finding another little person who is learning and experiencing the world for the first time, just like yourself.

As I was watching one of these exchanges today, I was struck with Jesus’ exhortation for us to become like little children. We grown-ups have gotten so used to living among people that we have ceased to be delighted by them. C.S. Lewis once said something to the effect that, if we were to see each other as we will be in eternity, we would be tempted to worship each other. I think of how, in the age to come, we will be able to fully appreciate the wonderful creation of God — each other. I can’t wait until the body of Christ is glorified, and my eyes are finally opened to the full beauty God has placed in every saint. Just think about it: even someone who tries your patience now will be a blast to be around in the age to come. When all of our inner issues are settled and the sin nature is done away with, we will be able to fully appreciate each other for who we are.

But I don’t want to wait until then. I want to get a glimpse of that now, even with people I already like and appreciate, but especially with people who are at odds with me. I know my dim little eyes haven’t seen the half of what God has built into this wonderful Body of Christ, but I want to see. I want to begin loving and delighting in people with new eyes… to see them as Jesus sees them… to see them with the eyes of a little child.

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2008 in Eternity, Heart Stuff, Intimacy with God

 

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Word of Life Bible Study – Meeting 5

We had a particularly small group today, but we had soooo much fun. The third chapter of Word of Life talks about the divine Sonship of Christ, and let me tell you, that’s a mind-blowing subject. If you ever think you’ve got an entire grasp on it, it’s time to go back and start again, because you don’t.

We talked about what sonship really means, in context to Christology. Most often, in an attempt to stress that Jesus’ sonship does not imply a literal spiritual birthing in eternity past, theology books will define sonship as Jesus’ position of honor and authority before the Father. This is a true and biblical definition — such is the case in Colossians 1:15 where Jesus is called the “Firstborn over all creation,” and in Hebrews 1:2 where He is called “the heir of all things”.

But as we discussed it, the conlcusion we came to is that sonship is foremostly a term of relationship and affection. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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