“I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones,three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.”

-Written by Paul in 2 Corinthians

And we think we have it hard?

Wait for you
Waiting in this time
You see every need 
You read though every line

You knew everything about me
and still you called my name

You're all that I have looked for
Everything I needed, was in You.
I rest my head, lay down my case
I can't go back that way,
'Cause now I see it.
The Truth.

Looking back in time,
Flipping thru the pages.
All I can see are your hands 
crucified for my wages.

You knew everything about me
and still You called my name
You're all that I have looked for
Everything I needed, was in You.
I rest my head, lay down my case
I can't go back that way,
'Cause now I see it.
The Truth.
Now I see You.

Community & Relationshipstuff

This whole past week God has really been showing me so much about my personal relationships and how key they are to sharing His love with others. So many of my relationships stay at a really “healthy” distance and I have a large group of people that I barely have any idea who they really are. The truth is that I have walked through much of my life having a lot of friends but never really knowing anyone or allowing anyone to really know me. I can try to blame this on my busy schedule, Facebook and even how most people will tend to let me down but the truth is the reason I find myself in the situation is always simply because of my own choice to stay that way.

God has been teaching me how vital it is to live in community and to really “rub shoulders” with a select group of people. He has been showing me that I am missing so much in my life by living in a way that I have nothing but surface relationships everywhere I go. The reality is that this existence is really empty and is not the way that he created any of us as humans to live. We were created to live in community.

Another thing I have begun to realize more than ever is that it was through relationship with “sinners” that Jesus shared God’s love with them. He didn’t just merely hand them a peace of paper with 12 steps to heaven or share with them a good sales pitch on why they should convert to something. He ate with them, he spent time with them and met with them exactly where they were. He did not require that they would get everything together before he would give them his time. Jesus showed them true Love even when they were in their mess and in that He taught them that there was a much better way of life available for them.

For so long I have lived with an idealism that in sharing my faith in Christ it was my job to convince them or show them the truth. I am now seeing that its not my job to change the way they think or to try and sell Gods love to them in a well worded sales pitch. I simply need to go and meet them exactly where they are and share Gods love with them by getting to know them and praying with them. I am just now growing in the understanding that it is in relationship that we can spread Gods love to the people that may never ever walk into a church or take the time to read our little pamphlet that we hand them on the street in passing.

10 Jesus ate in Matthew’s house. Many men who gathered taxes and many who were sinners came to Matthew’s house and sat down with Jesus and His followers. 11 The proud religious law-keepers saw this. They said to the followers of Jesus, “Why does your Teacher eat with men who gather taxes and with sinners?” 12 Jesus heard them and said, “People who are well do not need a doctor.

-Matthey 9:10-12