My classroom called life…Kingdom lessons

My desire is to abide

Lessons from the Flood – “Revival from the Shelter” May 10, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — charredsmore @ 7:00 pm

As I was carrying my guitar in from the car, I had about five people ask me “Are you leading worship tonight?” “Sure, why not?!?” I had gotten to the shelter earlier that day (at Shawnee Community College), and was planning on spending the night. After spring break, and at least a week out of school, I was really missing my Cairo family and wanted to have some time with them at the Shelter. Amanda had already been there the night before and so I thought it would be a lot of fun for the two of us to put together a little worship dealio.

It felt like a little forerunner meeting, with a small group of misfits. In the natural realm, one would look at this unlikely group and chuckle. Those the world disregards, the Lord embraces. He looks at the heart and not the outward appearance.

During our worship service, we had spontaneous songs, prayer, testimony, and preaching. It was amazing to hear the hearts of those who had been touched by God during this tragedy. A man shared how during this time he had been drawn closer in his relationship with God. He had a deeper desire to read the Word and get back to Church when going back to Cairo. Others were comfortable to lead in prayer (who normally would not have volunteered to pray out loud) as they asked the Lord to transform our community, to bring unity to Cairo as we rebuild. One man even got to preaching…he was not messing around either! Another older gentleman was getting his Holy Spirit dance on…along with calling forth the power of God in the shelter. I got rocked…I mean, I was just on the floor laughing with the joy of the Lord. I was having a great time with my friends. Even a five year old got on the mic and told us how much Jesus loves us!

At the end of our service, one gentleman said, “We should do this every night! Same time, same place!”

Praise God! He is bringing revival to the hearts of the refugees! Amen.

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Lessons from the Flood #1 – Stuff

Filed under: Uncategorized — charredsmore @ 6:55 pm

So, I have been meaning to share a few testimonies from this whole “Flood of 2011” situation, but haven’t gotten started until tonight.  I can honestly say that there has been so much good coming out of tragedy, so much pruning, so much stripping away, in a good way.  It’s hard to put language to all of this, because in no way do I want to come across as “God planned for this all to happen”, however I do believe that He allowed it.  I am still working on what I believe about all of that…and I don’t think I necessarily need to have my theology all straightened out to be loved my my Creator.  I’m just going to “be” for now and rest in the shadow of His wing.  He’s pretty good like that.  We don’t need an opinion or an absolute understanding of why things happen, perhaps just the process of how He is using it for our good.  Here is a little ditty I put together in processing my attatchment to “stuff”.

Stuff

Have you ever had the thought to get rid of your stuff? I mean…I have had boxes and boxes of stuff sitting in my parents basement for years since leaving after High School Graduation. I can even hear my mom saying, “Amen” after reading this. Oh, wait, she probably won’t say that, but she would respond with a “YES! And I am so glad you went through your boxes and condensed it down to five.” Haha. Anyway, back to the blog about “stuff”. Lately, before the flood, I had been thinking about getting rid of some things. Clothes, books, junk…you know the stuff that just seems to clutter up your house. I had been thinking about going through my closet, for real, and getting rid of things that I no longer wear. Things that have been in there for at least five years, and I have never touched. Things that no longer fit…too big, or too little. I have been wondering, if I were to move, could I fit all of my things in my car? Random, I know…but the thought crossed my mind. No way, I mean, my book collection alone probably wouldn’t even fit in the car. Sad. I say that I want to have all these books as resources for others…but how often are others reading them? Hmmm…I think I am about to make a serious donation to the church for a library or something.

I knew things were getting serious when they called off school for a week, because let’s face it, our District doesn’t do things like that. We decided to evacuate the day before they made it mandatory. For some reason, none of us in the house were freaking out. We were kind of excited and giddy…not for our town to be in danger, but that we were now on this adventure of “unknown” for a week. Or so we thought. When packing up my things, it wasn’t as hard as I thought to make quick decisions on what I wanted to keep. I knew that I would only have enough space to fill my car, that was the limit as to what I could bring. After getting my clothes together, I called my roommie in to look at my closet, she said, “Now, this looks like a normal person’s closet.” Conviction! After I had already gotten the clothes I wanted out of the closet. I think it is about time to make a donation to the thrift store.

Stuff. Why do I have so much stuff? I have been asking myself that lately. It is certainly interesting how a situation like this can cause you to re-evaluate areas of your life. I really would like to be less tied down to my stuff…available to just give it away if someone needs it or even wants it. This is a personal challenge I am giving myself. I want to be free to travel and move around without thinking about how I can move all this stuff. If I lost everything that is left at my house in Cairo right now, would I be content? Sure. Would I even miss those things? Probably not. What is truly important in life is held in my heart and relationships. I am thankful for this lesson. I’m looking forward to downsizing when I get back home to Cairo.