Friends, family, and Jesus

Can’t believe it’s been almost a week since my last blog post!  Hope ya’ll haven’t checked out on me!  I’ve got some stuff swirling in my head that needs to be typed out, but this has been a crazy busy week and I just haven’t had a chance till now to sit and think.  But the crazy busy for the most part has been a good crazy busy – I’ve gotten to spend some time with a couple of friends I haven’t had much face time with lately and I’ve had a couple more meetings this week than usual.  And tomorrow is Fah-ri-day!

So just to catch you up…

Sunday afternoon, I had the pleasure of spending an hour with several members of my worship family discussing one of the core values at my church…authentic relationships.  In this particular value, our heart for our church body is to mirror the same honest and genuine relationships Jesus had with others in the relationships we have with people in our own lives. 

We loved you so much that we were delighted

to share with you not only the gospel of God

but our lives as well,

because you had become so dear to us.

1 Thessalonians 2:8

 

That’s a huge part of authentic relationships.  Not just sharing the gospel, but actually doing life together.  Becoming involved in each others lives enough to support and uplift each other, to encourage each other, to pray for each other, to hold each other accountable, to love each other. 

And let us consider how we may spur one another on

toward love and good deeds. 

Let us not give up meeting together,

as some are in the habit of doing,

but let us encourage one another

—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Hebrews 10:24-25

 

A precious reminder of the importance of fellowship within the body of Christ.  We can’t been islands.  We need each other.

And as I’m typing this and thinking back over my week, I can’t help but smile at how precious God is in not just telling us but showing us as well.  I spent part of Sunday afternoon talking about God’s views of authentic relationships and in looking back, I see over and over how He’s shown me throughout this week what authentic relationships really look like. 

Monday morning, I met with a few folks from my worship family to talk through some songs.  Love hanging out with them.  Love listening to songs and worshipping with them.  Ashley, Scott, and Susan – three truly authentic people…three lovers of Jesus.

On Monday night, I had an amazing dinner with my precious friend Mary Kathryn.  We gabbed over panini’s and had a wonderful chat.  Her honesty and encouragement is valuable beyond measure.  She feels your feelings right along with you but won’t let you sit in the pit.  She beautifully reminds me of who I am in Christ when I’ve momentarily forgotten.  And her laugh is absolutely glorious!  If you haven’t been and checked out her blog, Beauty for Ashes, then get on over there and give it a read!

Tuesday morning, I had coffee and Jesus with two sweet friends, Mandi and Deb.  Mandi is planning a wedding (*insert girly squeals here*)…Deb and I got to offer encouragement for her in the midst of a bit of chaos.  What a priviledge to be able to pour love on someone else.  We laughed, we got in the Word, we talked about wedding dresses.  What a blessed time.  And even more of a blessing…my mom and her friends were also at the coffee shop having coffee, laughing, and encouraging each other just a couple of tables away.  Precious.

Tuesday night, there was a vision casting gathering for our worship family at church.  A time of sharing, encouraging, and of zeroing in on where we want to be as a ministry, as individuals, and as a family.  A time of recentering our focus on the One who is the Reason for everything we do. 

Wednesday morning was Bible study with some of the most incredible women!  God’s gentle reminder for us that morning was just how beautiful we are to Him, how precious we are to Him, how much He loves us.  And then to have the pleasure of digging into His word with these women!  What a wonderful way to begin a day!

Wednesday night, I had dinner with another precious friend, Emily.  She is just the sweetest thing ever.  We talked about our lives, we talked about our families, we talked about Jesus.  She’s got the sweetest heart ever.  So full of grace with such a passion for others to know Christ’s love.

After I got home Wednesday night, I got into a coughing fit (gotta love that pollen) and Hubby, that darling man, got up out of bed and fixed me a hot tea with honey and lemon.  He truly has the heart of a servant.  God gave me an amazing gift when He gave me that man.

And then today, I went to the doctor because, well after all that coughing, Hubby said that I needed to go.  My doctor is the kindest man, a Godly man.  He never rushes through an appointment, takes time to answer my questions and explain his reasons for giving me this medicine or not giving me that.  He sat and contemplated for a moment what the best treatment option would be instead of just scribbling out a prescription for something I didn’t need.  God’s love is so evident in how he truly cares for his patients.

So, a busy week so far…yes!  But a blessed week so far…most definitely!  A week full of authentic relationships in Christ. 

How about you?  What examples of authentic relationships has God shown you lately?

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6 thoughts on “Friends, family, and Jesus

  1. First of all, you make your life sound like a dream. I know, it’s not a dream, but all I can do when I hear something like that is sigh in a sort of spiritual and relational jealousy…

    Okay, God has blessed me, too 😀

    When reading through all of that, it’s nice to remind myself that God didn’t just call us to spread His word to other people (a scary prospect, at least for me) and then stop there–He calls us to have meaningful relationships with them–something I’ve always strove and almost always failed at doing.

    And by the way, your husband is now my masculine hero #4. 1) Jesus. 2) My own dad. 3) Brother. 4) Someone I’ve never met…’s husband 😉

    Sometimes I forget, through all of your talk of Jesus and spirituality, like so many others, all-too-often, that you have a real-person life and a sense of humor. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading about it more than just about anything else in the whole wide world, and it might just be me, but it almost feels more rewarding to read about the fruits of a legitimate Christianity than the Christianity itself. I’m not sure whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing…

    Whatever the case, I enjoyed reading this post.

    -AT

    • Thank you! Not to brag, but my husband is definitely hero-status worthy! When I have a chance to reflect on God’s goodness and the people He’s surrounded me with (whether near or far), I realize that I really do live the good life. Sometimes I just have to step back and say, “Lord, how is it that you are so good to me?” I am so grateful.

      And I know what you mean about the fruits being rewarding. It’s sort of like the Christianity is the foundation of the house, but the fruit is the walls. What’s the use of laying the foundation if you aren’t going to build on it?

      J

  2. As usual I rely on you for the verse, but your week just goes to prove what that verse says.
    It’s something about losing yourself in others, and it’s telling all of us when we do for others, we have the rewards ourselves. When we see someone else down, and listen to them, how rewarded we are in their love for us for being there for them. Now back to the verse, it is a transpositional kind of verse, an ironic verse, a vice versa verse, something like when we lose ourselves in others….. or when we give our lives for others……..we get it back——man I wish my memory worked enough to be able to just pull those verses out and quote them!! It’s kinda like the recent Bible study thing….when we are way down…we get so many rewards, because we start to notice all God’s blessings we’ve taken for granted, and end up way UP!

    • Hmmm, um maybe Mark 8:35? Whoever wants to save his life will lose it but whoever loses their life for Jesus’ sake will save it. To keep our live to ourselves and not become involved in relationship with others is not life at all. But to lose ourselves in serving others…THAT is life.

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