Sunday, April 27, 2014

It's time to be dunked...

People tend to be shocked when I give my testimony since I have been a Christian for about 10 years now, but yet I have not been baptized.  In part, I always had hesitancy in being re-baptized outside of the Catholic Church, but this past week, God has called me to take this step of obedience and commitment.  And ironically, I believe this rounds out the year I call "the year of obedience" as it relates to my faith.

My post yesterday outlines how God made me listen earlier in the week by blessing me with a case of strep which left me speechless.  I revisited Colossians 2, which has been weighing on my mind and heart for the past couple of weeks.

Colossians 2: 6-15 (NIV) 
6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.  8 See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces  of this world rather than on Christ.  9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.  11 In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands.  Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.  13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you  alive with Christ.  He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.  15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. 

Colossians 2: 18-19 (NIV) 
18 Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you.  Such a person also goes into great detail about what they have seen; they are puffed up with idle notions by their unspiritual mind.  19 They have lost connection with the head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.
 
On Friday, I dumped the guy I had been dating.

On Saturday, I heard our pastor preach, and maybe for the first time ever, I clearly heard God speak to me.  Everything was connecting in my head all at once.  I think the most powerful portion of the sermon was when re-visited John 1: 12-13 - God gives us the right/authority/power/ability to become His children, but through belief in Jesus' name.  We believe in His name by confessing His nature, embracing His mission, and seeking His glory. 

On Sunday, I was blessed to hear the sermon again since I was not needed in Camp Fun.  It confirmed everything I already knew. 

Indecisiveness wiped.  A new beginning.  A child of God - innocent and believing.  Freedom through baptism.  Perfect for this blog - Transformation.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Can you hear me? Can you hear me now?

Can you hear me?
A whisper exists in your ear.  Every bible passage you pull out and read tells you what you need to do in your current situation, but you choose not to listen.  You are in control of the given situation.

Can you hear me now?
As you head to urgent care on Easter Sunday, you're still oblivious to the fact that God is talking and providing advice.  All you can think about is that you need to start antibiotics today in order to still present to the CEO on Tuesday.  Yet you still don't even know if you have a bacterial infection, you're just basing your diagnosis on prior illnesses.

The diagnosis is strep.  Your throat and tonsils swell to make even swallowing water difficult and painful.  When you try to talk, all you do is croak.  You need to find a 24-hour pharmacy to get started on that antibiotic because you still need to present to the CEO.  You continue to ignore that whisper in your ear.

Finally home and on an antibiotic, you don't know what to do.  Everybody is visiting with family and friends on Easter and you can't even call your family to wish them a Happy Easter and catch up on life because your throat is too swollen.  You choose to send a few quick texts and work on that presentation you need to give the CEO on Tuesday.

Monday arrives and you are quarantined at your house since you're still contagious.  You still brush off that whisper in your ear.  You take a break and open Facebook to see everybody's spring family photos from the day before.  One of your more spiritual friends had posted on Easter something along the lines "He has RISEN!  Let us celebrate!"  You are reminded about what the holiday signifies.  The last few years you always brushed it off as "just another day," but you begin to realize that it isn't just another day.

You begin to listen.  It only took getting strep on Easter Sunday, being stuck home alone while in quarantine, and a dear friend's post to be reminded that sometimes you need to listen and hear what God has to say.  By not allowing you to talk, you had to withdraw from the situation that needed a solution and become analytical about what was going on.  You had to address and deal with it straight on.  You feel better about it.

The presentation to the CEO went better than expected.

True story.