THE BEAUTY OF SILENCE


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Not every opinion needs to be shared.

Not every idea is revolutionary.

Bridle your tongue.

Conserve your energy.

Choose your moments.

Wait on the Holy Spirit.

“We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.” 

-James, the Apostle

 

 

 

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SELF-AWARENESS


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“Let the person without sin cast the first stone.”

-Jesus

SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO SAY


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SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO SAY
Even if your hands are shaking
And your faith is broken
Even as the eyes are closing
Do it with a heart wide open
Say what you need to say
-John Mayer-
Tell your loved ones you love them while you can. Encourage those around you.
Speak your ideas and dreams out into the world.
Don’t hold back!

Stolen Destiny


NEW YORK, I weep for your baby girls and baby boys, fully formed, yet defenseless. They are a breath away from seeing the light of day. Oh, the excruciating pain they will experience. Their bright futures snatched from them by 38 senators who themselves are allowed to experience life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Will these children even receive a proper burial? Sheer brutality. The cry of these unborn babies will be heard. They will make the small bizarre victory shout in the senate sound like a mouse before a lion. They will not be silenced. They are crying out for justice! I cry out with them. #StolenDestiny #SickAndShameful #DoNotBeSilent 50999218_10217634529198892_6617662859235033088_n

Raise a Hallelujah-The Power of Praise


MORNING MEDITATION- Please join me!
I raise a hallelujah, in the presence of my enemies 🥁
I raise a hallelujah, louder than the unbelief 📣
I raise a hallelujah, my weapon is a melody 🎼
I raise a hallelujah, heaven comes to fight for me 💪🏽

May you be encouraged and strengthened by God today to raise a hallelujah in your most challenging situations and see God’s hand of mercy come to your rescue. Today, my weapon is a melody.

Sing the song that God has written on your heart! 

 

God In Our Story


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“We look for God where we expect him to be-church, weddings, funerals and the like. It is difficult to imagine that God could be present with us in time of failure or questioning, in moments of hurt or rebellion. But God uses the entire landscape of our lives to craft and mature us- the good, the bad and the ugly of our stories.” (Reese&Loane, Deep Mentoring)

God’s involvement in our story covers all aspects of who we are. He is intricately aware of our every thought, fear, desire and dream. God’s awareness of our destiny is made clear through the prophet Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;” (Jer. 1:5). David, king and psalmist, was keenly aware of God’s concern for man, “what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them?” (Psalm 8:4).

Hope rises in our hearts as a result of knowing that we are not alone and forgotten on this planet. The possibility of fulfilling our destinies lies in us not only understanding that God is in our stories, but that he invites us to join in his.

Shaping the Journey of Emerging Adults- Book Review


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Dunn and Sundene establish “the three pillars of identity formation: love, work and ideology” (110) as a pattern among emerging leaders and I believe that the balance between the three make up a healthy identity; each one is equal to the other and plays a vital role. Love played out in our relationships; work as an expression of our God-given talents and skills; ideology as our belief in God and how we perceive and engage the world.

I can think of no better time than now for Paul Tillich’s message of “the courage to be” to be propagated in the fashion of Dr. Martin Luther King (124). When speaking of identity, I find one of its most challenging tests comes when you stand for what you believe in while still respecting others. Dr. King’s presence of mind while in the midst of chaos and riots was astounding. The depth of his conviction based on God’s Word and the dignity of every human being speaks to my heart of a man who knew God and who made a righteous stand in his unjust social context. Civility and mutual respect are being sidelined as an all-out assault is being waged for the young emerging mind.

The age distribution being nineteen to thirty-five for the emerging adult surprised me (17). I wondered if this wasn’t based more on Western cultures as in other cultures it would seem that the age would be younger. This leads me to consider how the emerging adult sees and engages responsibility in a generally narcissistic and noncommittal Western environment.

Dunn, Richard R. and Jana L. Sundene. 2012. Shaping the Journey of Emerging Adults: Life-       giving Rhythms for Spiritual Transformation. Downer Grove, Il : InterVarsity Press.

Preserving Culture *


Culture cradles the story of each people group and is the blueprint of identity. To erase culture is to erase identity. In an interview with Live Science, Cristina De Rossi, an anthropologist at Barnet and Southgate College in London, provides us with this definition, “Culture encompasses religion, food, what we wear, how we wear it, our language, marriage, music, what we believe is right or wrong, how we sit at the table, how we greet visitors, how we behave with loved ones, and a million other things.”

As a former missionary to Spain and a current student of global leadership, I champion the preservation of local culture as an indicator of the traditions and beliefs of each nation which make them unique. I lived in Spain for almost 3 decades and the people and culture of Spain enriched my life as I respected and adapted to their customs.

¡Viva España! #flamenco #olé #arte

Experiencing the Trinity – Devotional Book Review


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Johnson, Darrell W. 2002. Experiencing the Trinity. Vancouver, British Columbia: Regent College Publishing.

Chapter 1 – Finding the Trinity

That God is one, but not so much in the sense of digit or number, but rather in “once for all”, “unique” (22) sheds light on the subject of the Trinity beyond grappling with a number. I was aware of Elohim as a plural noun, His “three-fold-ness” (16), but not that it is always followed by a singular verb. The facts of the Trinity are interwoven throughout Scripture and when I encounter them, they lead me to worship the resurrected Christ (15).

Chapter 2 – Understanding the Trinity

Relationship and community are central to the universe as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are central to reality (37). I cannot find examples in nature for the divine Godhead but rather “in God’s self-revelation” (45) and as we, the church, are called to preserve rather than resolve the mystery (40). “To be is to be related” (O’Donnell 1983) appears to me to be the antithesis of, or at least parallel to, Descartes’ “I think; therefore I am”.

Chapter 3 – Joining the Trinity

 I find myself in communion with the Trinity as you draw me to yourself and reveal to me who you are (60). You are not solitary or isolated, but forever in relationship, in community, in fellowship (61). If “God is love” (I John 4:8), the nature of God beckons us to join him in fellowship for love cannot exist in solitary, only in relationship (62). As disciples, being “co-lovers with God of God, with God of one another, with God of the world” (64) gives our meaning and purpose.

Chapter 4 – Entering the Trinity

Darrell Johnson refers to being with the Trinity “within the circle” (74) which reminds me of Psalm 25:14,”The secret counsel of the LORD is for those who fear Him, and He reveals His covenant to them.” Apart from a sense of intimacy with the Lord, the idea of the round table of God comes to mind as He reveals his covenants, his secrets to us. I believe it is within this circle of intimacy with the Lord that he reveals himself where the us-ness is experienced (73). The “rich inter-connectedness”  shared within the Trinity is ours to know and enjoy (78). In this inter-connectedness I find the inner issues of being, doing and belonging come full circle as I “live and move and have my being” in You (Acts 17:27-28). There is no longer a sense of groping in the dark as he reveals himself.

Chapter 5 – Experiencing the Trinity

There is something to quieting ourselves, as the Psalmist says, in the presence within the circle of the triune God to simply know him intimately and openly (Psalm 46:10). Within the circle there is no more striving, but rather an experiencing, an enjoyment of fellowship with the Community. I am at rest. To experience the Trinity in prayer, or as Johnson says, to “pray the Trinity,” (91) is to not only direct your prayer to God, but to experience Him in it. To join with him in the fellowship that is in him. It is interesting to note how Johnson, in reference to the six movements of Paul’s prayer that starts and finishes with him calling on his “big God” (92) for the church at Ephesus, that all six points begin the same way, “I ask the Father to grant you out of the riches of his glory…” (93-100). Paul must have experienced something of those riches and intimacy with the Fellowship.

Chapter 6 – Epilogue

The Nicene Creed- Amen.

Conclusion – Reflection on the Experience

Experiencing the Trinity introduced me to the experience of the triune God in a way that is intimate and powerful. Going beyond the traditional approach of attempting to figure out the best way to explain the triune God with our limited finite ability helped me to tap into a deeper sense of experience where my mind gave way and I was able to experience Community within the circle deep in my heart. Johnson’s reference to Paul’s prayer to the Ephesians made it come alive and I was able to see things that I had never seen before and taste for myself something new in prayer with God. Sitting here quietly on my sofa, I have a renewed sense of the Holy and a burning desire to always have present the us-ness and to not offend God with small prayers. I am reminded of how we are made in God’s image and how that image is one of relationship, fellowship, and community. Knowing this is healing my heart of the pain of isolation.

            Father, I derive my name from You. I acknowledge my weakness. Strengthen me with power through your Spirit in my inner being. May I be rooted and established in Love and grasp all it’s dimensions to the full. (Ephesians 3) Amen.

Additional works cited:

O’Donnell, John. 1983. Trinity and Temporality. New York: Oxford University Press.

 

By Cindy Vermillion