Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I've got to DO. SOMETHING.

A while back I posted about the difficult time I was having dealing with Maren. I opened up to my bible study group and they looked at me like I had a curse on me. I was in a very vulnerable place and needed comfort and encouragement. It was not easy for me to admit I couldn't handle things. They may not have realized how I really felt, but not once after that did anyone call to see how I was or offer to help. In fact, no one mentioned it ever again.

Things are getting better with Maren. I definitely have a better grasp on dealing with her and don't feel like I'm ready to fall off a cliff anymore. I realized that I felt bad that no one seemed to care. I can think of a million times that I thought about a need someone had and never took action. There are some times we just have to do. something. And remembering how I felt when no one did anything, pushed me towards doing some things that were difficult, out of my comfort zone.

I have an old friend who has pancreatic cancer. She is having her second round of chemo right now. I don't talk to her anymore, our lives have just taken different paths. I have been following her Caring Bridge site and keeping up on how she is doing.

When she found out her cancer had returned a few months ago, God put a burden on my heart for her. I felt awkward and nervous about contacting her. I haven't talked to her in a over a year. Most people that live in this area have a religious background. They might not go to church or follow Christ but they would welcome your prayers for them in any situation, especially sickness. My friend however seems antagonistic about Christianity and matters of faith. And being a pastor's wife, that puts me at odds with her world view.

I worried about calling her at a bad time and not knowing what to say or how she would respond. So I put it off. But the burden would not go away. I finally called her last week and left a message. I didn't hear back for a few days and thought maybe I was off the hook. But Friday morning she called back and I was thrilled. She was obviously touched that I called. I offered to bring her family some food. She thankfully accepted.

Five days after chemo she crashes and today was that day. I brought a lot of food. It's not a hard thing for me to do. Goodness knows, I already spend most of my life in the kitchen anyway. We had a great visit and I hope to be able to do it again soon.

When I got home I had an email telling me the time had come do a little outreach with someone Mike has been working with from the Veteran's office. They needed a non-military woman to listen to someone's story. So I fit the bill and had to take off right away.

I did not want to go. This is a totally new and uncomfortable area to me. There are some things in this world I just do not want to know about. But I took my Bible and armed myself with a list of verses about hope and forgiveness and prayed the whole way. It took four hours and the lady wouldn't come out to talk to us. When I was driving home I felt like I had wasted my time.

Last night, I realized that offering ourselves and our time to show God's love to others is never wasted. It doesn't matter if they receive it, like my friend with cancer did, or reject it, like the struggling vet did. All that matters is that I offer it. When it isn't convenient, easy, comfortable I am more humble and dependent on God.

Sometimes we just have to do. something. God wants not only our words, but our deeds to honor Him. When Jesus was on earth he often used the opportunity to meet physical needs to show Himself as Savior. When I don't know what to do, the answer isn't to do nothing

Ephesians 2:8-10
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-- not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
My deeds do not save me. However, my deeds should point to the One who saved me.

Phillipians 2:1-4
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

Out of the joy and love that Christ has poured into me, I want that to overflow and fill up the lives of others.

Tomorrow, I am going to watch the little 3 year old of a friend of mine from church. She is 6 weeks pregnant and feeling crumby. Oh boy, do I remember those days. I am hoping she can get a break and some extra rest while he runs around our backyard with the girls.

Get out there and Do. Something.

May the Mind of Christ my Savior
Kate B. Wilkinson

May the mind of Christ, my Savior,
Live in me from day to day,
By His love and power controlling
All I do and say.

May the Word of God dwell richly
In my heart from hour to hour,
So that all may see I triumph
Only through His power.

May the peace of God my Father
Rule my life in everything,
That I may be calm to comfort
Sick and sorrowing.

May the love of Jesus fill me
As the waters fill the sea;
Him exalting, self abasing,
This is victory.

May I run the race before me,
Strong and brave to face the foe,
Looking only unto Jesus
As I onward go.

May His beauty rest upon me,
As I seek the lost to win,
And may they forget the channel,
Seeing only Him.


sharilyn said...

inspiring...encouraging... convicting. thank you for your words of exhortation. a very good and timely reminder and well-said.

robert said...

Thank you for your honest and insightful blog. It deserves a wide reading, because it speaks for many, and encourages loving action. Perhaps it would work as a booklet or tract.

Appreciated your quotation of Kate Wilkinson's hymn, "May the Mind." Today is actually a special day, the 150th anniversary of her birth. If you love the old hymns, I think you'd enjoy my website, Wordwise Hymns.

One quick suggestion about your site: The dark blue background makes the words of your blog difficult to read. A lighter shade would help.

God bless you and yours.