Can't We All Just Get Along?

A rare occurrence has been taking place at my house.

Like... "call the Smithsonian" kind of rare.

My kids have been getting along. Working together, asking each other's advice -- then actually listening to the advice offered.

It is a beautiful thing.

To hear your children getting along warms the cockles of  my heart (I love to toss out the word "cockles" -- you just don't get to use that every day) and ranks right up there with their decision to accept Christ in baptism, as well as watching them use one of the many gifts God has given them.

I wonder.

I wonder how God feels about his own children getting along.

How He feels when I can't see past the fact that my brother in Christ chooses to tell God he loves Him and worship a different way than I do, so dismiss my brother altogether.

... or how He feels when I can't see past which lever my sister in Christ pulls on election day or the sign she has in her yard so speak venomous words about her to others.

I wonder how He feels when I judge my sister who was raised in an abusive home, or by a single parent who worked 3 jobs to make ends meet, so she shows up at worship dressed inappropriately and doesn't speak to her husband or children the way I think she should. I wonder if He wishes that I would come alongside her and love her instead of judge, and show her a better way... since no one ever has.

I wonder how He feels about us getting along? I'm pretty sure He told us:
'Having a laugh' photo (c) 2011, Lars Plougmann - license:

"I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must also love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."
John 13:34,35

P.S. The littles are not my adorable doodlebugs. But they appear to be getting along. The bigs are mine on the first day of school. This is how we do "first day" pics.


Doing Great Things For God

Hello there. It's been a while. A very loooong while.

I finally have a thought. Would love to hear your thoughts on it, too. But, the reality is... no one is probably out there. It may have just been too long.

And this thought launches from another blog post I read almost a year ago. I would encourage you to read that one, because it says it way better than I will here.

 The general idea is that in the Christian culture/ lingo, many of us are encouraged/ told/ have the idea that we will/ need to "do great things for God." Of course, in our minds, "great things" can only mean either giving up your whole life to start an orphanage in a third world country, or becoming a well-known speaker and/or author so that your words touch thousands.

The deal is, God has a vastly different definition of "great things" than we do. My friend who will take someone to dinner when they ask her for money on the street -- and give them not only the gift of a full belly, but her attention and time, too, is doing great things for God, I believe. My friends who consistently and unselfishly care for their neighbors and family are doing great things for God. My friend who ministers to those on the fringes to let them know they are loved and not forgotten is doing great things for God.

You don't know any of these people's names, and likely never will, but surely you know people just like them, doing great things for God.

An enthusiastic, well-meaning gentleman tells me EVERY. TIME. he sees me, "I can't wait to see what great things God is going to do in your life. I just know God is going to do great things through you!" Sweet, I guess, but I just think, "What has He been doing in my life? Is raising babies not enough for God? Changing diapers in the nursery at church doesn't count for anything? Those HOURS that I have spent on youth trips -- praying and laughing and losing sleep with teens -- nada?"

I know people are doing more than me and other things --- but not all of us will do great things in the eyes of the world -- though lives will no doubt be changed by those things, as well. But all of us can do God's great things. I say this because I've been feeling the "woe is me" lie again -- the lie that I don't matter, that God isn't using me, that my years on this earth are amounting to nothing, and "everyone" is getting a book contract/ awesome job/ the right degree. I finally had to claim that as the lie that was. Sure, I have let many opportunities slip by me and I have learned beyond my fair share of lessons from mistakes.

But just because I am not doing things that thousands can see, it doesn't mean it isn't great in God's eyes. And I continue to pray that He is the only one I aim to please and impress -- and THAT is a whole other struggle unto itself.

May you do something great for God today -- one of God's great things.

"The greatest among you will be your servant"Matthew 23:11

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