Waiting, Weariness, and His Hope

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“In Him was life, and His life was the Light of men… the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man.… and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”John 1:4, 9, 14

This Christmas season, my ministry travels have taken me to the land of the Midwest for visits, conversations, and times of encouraging the Body through the relationships God’s opened up for me in this region. While it’s strange to be away from home this year, God continues to reveal that home truly is wherever He is, and I know He’s with me here.

Last night, I got to visit a friend’s church to participate and support her as she led a “Christmas Quiet” time of Christian meditation for fellow members of her church community. We used the Ignatian spiritual exercise of meditating on a specific passage from the Scriptures (a key feature and distinctive in truly Christian meditation), this time holding in focus the account of Jesus’ birth from Luke 2 to see what God might want to say to and shape in each of us personally and collectively.

And what I found in this story I’ve read countless times over the years surprised me…

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Just a Thought: The Idea of Incarnational Art

sherjc.com_incarnational_art_cirToday, I read an article someone posted on Facebook on the topic of “How True Art Points to God.” As I started pondering on what I just read, I discovered some interesting food for thought.

I believe the art that truly points to God really comes from a heart that is rooted and saturated in Him, abiding in Him. It’s just the overflow of the relationship. It doesn’t have to try hard to have a “Christian” message, and it certainly doesn’t mean that those who claim the name of Jesus automatically make Christian art. It flows from the well of a deep relationship with Christ that is seasoned by His Word and led by the Spirit of God. It’s that same Spirit that overshadows us, so to speak, and delivers a message well beyond us to what is truly good, lovely, holy, and directs our hearts toward God. Continue reading

In Case of Disappointment, Break Glass (Part 4): Waiting for His Word

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This is the final post in a 4-part series. Read part 1: Heart Check.

For some of us, we are so stymied by the recent events of our lives that there are no more expectations to let go. You know what I say to that?

Good.

Why is it good? Well, when God clears the table of our expectations, we’re right where He wants us — a clean slate! Will we surrender the slate to Him, the canvas of our lives to paint the master work of art that He desires and put down our childish fingerpaints?

And for those still numbed by the sting of a disappointment delivered or the crushing blow we are in the throes of receiving, will we stop and recognize that the same God Who “gives and takes away” also takes away and gives? Continue reading

In Case of Disappointment, Break Glass (Part 3): Make Room

sherjc.com_lace_curtain_cirThis is the second post in a 4-part series. Read part 2: Frustrated Desire and Faith.

A few minutes into my heart-to-heart with the Father about those pesky missing lace curtains, I remembered God’s specific word that morning:

“Make room…for Me to move.”

I reflected some more on this instruction from Him. Then, I found myself telling my weakness to God, declaring His truth, and expressing my gratitude regardless of how I felt at the time. I confessed my inability to imagine a better circumstance than what I had originally planned. I declared by faith that I believed what He said. I thanked Him for even telling me ahead of the disappointment!

Then, I looked up at my semi-clad window with my unfinished vision of what could be, sighed, and decided to release it to Him. God knows better than I do and has better in store; otherwise, He would not have said so. I thanked Him for allowing this chain of events and using silly lace curtains to draw me to Himself.

And slowly along the way, I found comfort in Him. Continue reading