Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Believing for Peace

My heart is a bit sad today. There are so many amazing things going on in our life right now. God is just clearly opening up doors and making a way for us that is beyond exciting. We are feeling so alive, so in harmony, our marriage is just amazing, our house is cleaner, we are more calm, more peaceful everything is amazing except for one thing.

Our sermon on Sunday was very eye opening to me, I was talking with my mom about sometimes it's hard for me working at the job I have because there is little understanding or respect for my Christianity. I told my boss that I needed Thursday nights off, because I have choir practice and she said oh b/c of some church crap. I was surprised that I wasn't offended or even hurt, it just made my heart sad for her. The joy and fullfillment I find in Christ is just so beyond words that anyone not partaking that I feel is missing out!

Well I was talking with her also about, finding lines, I don't ever want someone to feel like I'm pushing something on them, but I also don't want to endorse things that the Bible is clear about being sin/wrong. I don't consider myself a judgemental person, and I have been confirmed in this by quite a few people, christian and unchristian alike. It's something I personally strive for, that is to not be judgemental. However, I know that as a Christian, the Bible tells me the world will hate me, because the world hated Jesus, truth does not rub the world the right way. [that's a quote from my pastor] I need to not be trying to make everyone feel better about their sin, b/c I have fear of being perceived as judgemental. I can't not say something just because I have stuff in my own life that needs changing, that's the beauty of fellowship you help one another out with your stuff. I tend to be a little too accepting I think of sin in others lives b/c I don't want them to be hurt by yet another Christian. It's tough when Jesus is so amazing and so many Christians are unloving and judgemental. In an effort to not be that though some end up accepting everything! Which is not the way of Christ, yes we are to LOVE EVERYONE, but sometimes that love is a tough love. It's saying what you don't want to say, it's speaking truth. [this was all the sermon on Sunday] He spoke of the fact that the church has lost it's conviction. And the fact is, God is very clear about things being right or wrong, yes approach in love, but stand for what's correct and just. The worst part of it all, we will be misunderstood, and misjudged...people will call us judgemental, which is where we double examine our hearts to make sure we are not, but then we have to find peace in Christ, we have to allow Him to be our defender. When we don't word things correctly, we need to get back up and try again, God knows my heart, he knows I have a love for people, I need to stop being wishy washy, I need to stop looking to certain people in my life for justification, my justification is in Christ. I am on this earth for His purposes and His plans, and how He wants to fullfill those in my life, I need to be open to that.

Things sadly are not going well my husbands family and us. It truly breaks my heart, and I think what hurts even more is it would appear, things will not be resolved anytime soon. We have been perceived in a certain way for so long...and we are taking a breath, remembering that we are not perfect, finding that rest I've been talking about, and letting God do our defending. It's tough, I want to rise up and defend myself, I want acceptence, I want justification in who I am, as does Nathan. However we are learning to rely on God for those things, and not family. It's tough, because family can play such an amazing role in your life, but it can also play such a harmful one, in this time of growth and eye opening, learning and so on...it's important that we keep focused on God and not get distracted. I explained it to my mom in this way: Nathan and I are growing so much, I see God working in both of us in amazing ways, if family is going to be a hindrance to that then we need to break away from that for a time, so that we can focus on God and not be consistantly challenged with keeping our joy. It was awesome b/c I used to word hindrance and one of the verses she had found in her quiet time that morning was Joel 2:12 amplified version: ..."says the Lord, turn and keep on coming to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning [until every hinderance is removed and the broken fellowship is restored.]"
Our broken fellowship with the Lord is the most important thing for us to repair at this point in our lives, we are learning and are sure to make mistakes, but the point is not to dwell on the mistakes but the growth. So if you could just pray for us, to continue having that peace, being misunderstood is such a hard thing for me, and I need to get over it, especially in this situation. ::BIG SIGH::

Would so appreciate it if anyone has encouragement! Hope you are all having a FABULOUS week! I pray blessings for anyone who reads this.


Yaya said...

I'm sorry things aren't going well with your relationship with the in laws. This is something Josh and I are also struggling with and in the end we realized that it's about us, not them, and if they are not supportive of our life endeavors than we need to stop hoping for their approval and taking their hurtful words to heart.

And it is (unfortunately) so true. Why is it that some religious people tend to be the most judgemental of them all?

When I was growing up my best friend's dad was the pastor at our church. He decided to go out searching for troubled teens and encourage them to come to church. Well they started coming and this caused such an uproar among the members of the church to have these 'rebellious' types in attendance (when if fact they needed the most saving). In the end the pastor got fired. How sad is that? Why must people cast such harsh judgement on others?

Sarah Bee said...

That is defintely what we are grasping, that we need to focus on our life and what God wants us to do. It's difficult, but if family can not be supportive of that and try to understand, than we do have to move on. Which sucks.

That Pastor getting fired saddens my heart. It is so true that we need to be bringing in people that "need saving" we need to be reaching out to people that don't know the truth. Our hearts are to be accepting of the people not their actions and so many people miss this.
What I've learned is that despite the large amount of Christians that are not accepting and tend to be judgemental, I need to be living life the way I know is right, and not let those people control my life. If I were to stop telling people I was a Christian or something along those lines, I would be letting them win, instead of standing up for the things Christ really wants us to stand for. I will be grouped together with sometimes and that's something I pray my life and actions will show people otherwise.
Bottom line, yes sin is wrong, but we are to hate the sin not the sinner. I think people genuinely don't understand the tactics or even existance of the devil and the part he plays in so many peoples lives. The lies he feeds people, it is our job to identify where the enemy is present and rebuke the devil not the people that have fallen victim to him...I could totally go into more detail about this...but this is getting long.
Thanks for sharing with me, and giving support about family things. I appreciate you, and will be praying for you to stay strong with not wanting approval, b/c for me it's a continuous battle.
Love to you from me. =]

Lauren Thomas said...

Hey there! I can so relate to what you are going through right now. My husand and I are having a time of "breaking away" from his family right now too. It's so hard because I want so badly for us all to have a great relationship but they are constantly pushing us away. They think that because my husband is on staff at a church that it's not a real job. I beg to differ! I can assure you that it will be hard. But I can also assure you that the peace and rest you find in Jesus is well worth the heartache!
I also find myself being too accepting of people as well because I don't want to turn them off from this awesome Jesus I serve! I think it probably has a lot to do with our generation.
Just remember that God does not give us anything we can't handle and sometimes it proves to be difficult when we are going through the "pruning" process of what God is trying to mold us into.

Cher said...

just thought I'd pop over from SITS... I definately know how you feel on this one. I asked for Sundays off work because I teach the youth group on Sundays at church and play the organ for the congregation. My boss couldn't guarentee anything....clearly they don't understand that our devotion isn't just some "stupid church crap". Glad to read your perspective!

Peggy said...

I am sorry you are having a hard time with your inlaws. On another note.. I love your writing and your thoughts. This was a very touching post. Have you thought of teaching Sunday school or having a Bible study group out of your home? I think you would be a very positive, uplifting speaker of God's word. I was upset to hear about the rude comment from your boss! I should feel sad for her, and I do.. but I also feel offended for you. So that is something I need to work on! Sounds like a very good Sermon. That is something I am guilty of.. accepting everyone instead of speaking my opinion. I have had a "to each his own" kind of attitude. I am getting better. I have invited more friends to Church and have spread my happiness in God all around:) If only I could persuade my husband.

Hope things are getting better. I will keep praying!

Jim & Naomi Trotto said...


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