Transformation is Far from Instant

Have you heard of The Mudroom? It's a collaborative blog that I'm posting on today. Here's a bit of what The Mudroom about,

Our vision is simple: make room for people.

Sometimes we feel like there’s no room at the table, or we don’t belong at the table, but what if we sidestep the table entirely and just meet in the mudroom? Sometimes the formality of the table can be intimidating and we find ourselves wishing we were under the table.

Sometimes we need the smaller space, the comforting place, with the people who will shove the cast off sweatshirts and baseball gloves and skateboards out of the way and slide to the floor with us. What if we just didn’t go in, and stayed in the mudroom instead?

Welcome to the mudroom. It might be a mess, but that’s what it’s there for.

Isn't that great? The world certainly needs more visions and attitudes like that. I'm honored to have my words there today.

Here's how the post begins...

It’s a parn that’s been there since the beginning, but it’s taken me most of my adult life to see it. 

I am an achievement-oriented person. I love to check things off lists and accomplish goals. In a society like the United States, it’s a pretty common way of interacting with the world. It is no surprise that I, and many others, have brought that way of thinking into the way we read the Bible.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” – 2 Corinthians 5:17

Hooray! We accept Christ and get to check so many things off our lists all at once. Get rid of bad habits—check. Let go of insecurities—check. Find freedom from pain—check. Receive a new life—check. We breathe deeply this hope of the Gospel, and sigh in rich satisfaction at the thought of a different future. We anticipate a path without the struggle we have pushed our way through to get to this fresh air.

It doesn’t take long before we are disappointed. It turns out that though belief can happen in a moment,the emergence of a new life is far from instant. 

And so, we wonder . . . have we failed? Did we not do something we were supposed to do in order to receive what has been promised to us?...

Read more of Accepting the Process over at The Mudroom.

Seeds and Hydrangeas, a Guest Post

Today I have the honor of guest posting over at my friend Claire's blog, Single Christian Girls. If you fall into any of those three categories, or even you don't, you should totally follow her. She is hilarious. 

Not trying to compete with her humor, I kept my usual more serious tone, but hopefully on a topic that would feel applicable to her readers, as I hope it will to you.

It's a bit of a continuation of what I posted earlier this week about growing leaves. You can tell it's what I've been thinking about lately.

Here's an excerpt,

The early chapters of Genesis have gotten trapped in scientific arguments and children’s stories. It’s not often the place we turn when looking for some inspirational Bible reading. Yet, the poetry and images contained within these earliest chapters paint some stunning portraits of God and humanity, if we have the eyes to see them.

One of my favorites comes in Genesis 1:11,

“Then God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them”; and it was so.”

How easy it is to jump to what God created, without pausing to notice how God created. Both the product and the process reveal things about the Lord’s character...
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Deep: A reflection on Psalm 64

Jennifer Upton is a blogger friend I have had the privilege of meeting in real life. The first time we saw each other, she hugged me. I bet she would do that to you, too. Her heart loves long and hard and deep for the people around her. She has been a consistent member of our little Psalms Journey community, and I am excited to host her words on my site today.


 

jade foot-M

I am feeling safe today.

 

But the last few weeks I have felt in danger of being captured by the state of circumstances encircling me. I have felt surrounded on all sides by the truth of others causing me to face new truths of my own. The lines of victims and those who victimize becoming blurred in the excavation.

 

Psalm 64:6 reads "the inward mind and heart of a man are deep." To me, this says that thoughts and hearts are so deep with evil, they cannot be understood. So today, I will sow my soul upon the grounds of David's lyrical penning and build an altar among its thorny blooms as I bow my head in response.

 

Has anyone ever sang their truth to you

not some lovely melody to one day recall and hum along your path

but a melody that sings to the tune of "I am trusting you to respond."

God knew the truth of this child

he now needed us to know

for her to sing of

dark cellar laden hearts who whispered at her departure "make sure no one talks about this."

A haunt hymn birthed within unsettled wilderness

dark shadows

obstructed rays

a wild that does not lie.

This child

her voice

also did not lie.

Her feet tapped

her skin reddened

fear gripped and tears burst aloud.

A life revealed

a birth of brave

her depth my living room held.

This child’s truth was deep

it covered us

stealing our breath

submerged we became.

Her brokenness we swallowed whole

its sting felt in the back of our throats

the sting of a thousand truths.

When you put your faith in Jesus

your place of living becomes filled

filled by the open spaces and sinking waters of another person’s deep.

The revelation of a life becomes your own beach song

your own wilderness hymn

air moves

your throat clears

and you sing in response

their song back to them.


Jennifer Upton headshotAbout Today’s Guest Blogger: Jennifer Upton

Many say I travel too deep, but I say one can never travel deep enough. Lover of all things turquoise & iced soy lattes. Covenant love to Tony, momma to Austin. The desire to write stories lived won’t remove its grip from me. Without understanding the purpose I keep going. I keep trusting. I blog at Spiritual Glasses and tweet at @SpiritlGlasses.


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