Living The Life That God Has For Us....

God's Plumbline Ministries is called to repair devastation in the lives of God's people allowing restoration both physically and spiritually. Providing creative solutions for employment, education and life skills allowing God to repair and restore hope.  Empowering each community to establish a secure foundation both inside and out, while keeping in tact God given talents and uniqueness, not focusing on man's ways but God's ways.  Developing working relationships within social and economic circles, working hand in hand with community leaders to bring the love and compassion of Jesus Christ. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Moses and The Organic Church

After getting Alyssa out the door to the bus on Wednesday mornings, I would load up diaper bags, pile Madisen and Parker in the car, drop them off in the church nursery, grab a mouth full of coffee cake, a cup of coffee and find my place among the other moms.

Looking back, I can remember the day I went to the grocery store in my pajama pants and didn't know  it until I walked in the front door of the store. Getting to bible study left me feeling much the same, a little rattled and unprepared but after getting in the groove, I loved these mornings.  They offered a sanity check, even though most weeks I could barley fit time in to do my home work.
I still went finished or not.

It was during this time, I remember feeling like so many of the stories in my home work really did apply to everyday life.  Maybe you are not familiar with Moses; he was adopted, murdered someone in anger, ran from his calling, struggled with public speaking and yet after his argument with God he said, yes.  Yes, Lord I will go where you say, do what you say and take all these people with me 'cause after all you are asking me to do nothing short of crazy.

No where did I ever remember as a child the part in the story where the Lord said to Moses,
"Because you didn't trust me enough to honor me as Holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I have given them".

No way! Those words felt like a punch in the stomach.
I felt sick, I was sobbing.  Really sobbing.
How on earth could this happen?
So what!  He hit the rock and didn't speak to it just this one time.
This was crazy!
Besides, all they wanted was water did it really matter how they got it?

It did matter and it had nothing to do with water.
In the end, the Lord took Moses, showed him with his own eyes the land he promised and said, "but you will not cross over".  When it was time, Moses died and the Lord himself buried him in Moab.

Something familiar seems to be happening to the church today.
Things are changing.

Can't you feel it and hear it.
At times you can even feel the hairs bristle on the back of peoples neck.

Leaders, status, revival, buildings, music, lighting, coffee in the middle of church, people painting, home groups, missions, prayer, healing, formal clothes are gone, even iPads and cell phones have replaced bibles.
Heck, my pastor doesn't even wear shoes when he preaches.
(That's how I knew this was our church. Well, sorta.)
People are not finding what they are looking for in all the old programs and well made plans.
You can hear people saying, "I just don't want to go to church anymore".

Some are calling this "organic" church.
I think they should call it, "don't you dare hit the rock if he said speak to it 'cause you just might miss it."

It won't matter that we have done church the same way our whole life.
I believe we will see more and more like in the days of Moses and the promise land.
Groups of people looking, waiting and believing for God to show up. They are not afraid of grass hoppers in the land while they personally go in and scout out the land, not depending on one guy to do it all for them in the name of God.  We will find people in everyday life that need Jesus and believe that this is church. Doing stuff like they did in the book of Acts.

It's not about all the great things you or Moses did so many years ago, the Lord knows these things.
Nor is it about him being mad at you or the church.
I am guessing he loved Moses deeply if he took the time to show him his faithfulness and to bury him.
He is asking us to be different, to act different, to believe different.

Think of it like this...

Holding on to the way we used to do church, unwilling to embrace change, believing what we did in the past is what God is asking for today. Only one day it may very well be like finding ourselves totally unprepared standing in our pajama pants when we get to church.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Ghandi's 7 Dangers To Human Virtue

virtue:noun1. behavior showing high moral standards 

On one of our lay overs coming home from India I found a book store.
I loved India and I love a good bookstore - score!
I purchased Ghandi's biography "My Experiments with Truth".
To be honest, he is a mystery to me, all four hundred and ninety-one pages of him.
I have found so much wisdom in his thinking.
You can't help but to deeply admire his self-discipline.
He wouldn't condone envy, but I did envy the compassion he showed to the poor no matter the cost. 
Whole heartedly I agree when he says "poverty is the worst form of violence".
It is an unspoken violence, leaving deep imprints in how you see and feel about yourself. 
I wonder about his salvation. 
From what I could tell he couldn't really wrap his mind around Jesus.
India has so many "gods" and yet it still seems like they long for a Savior.
Yet, so much of what Ghandi did and said happen to be very Christ like.
He even went as far to say, "your Christ I like, but your Christians not so much".

I have been thinking about his list of virtues.
It seemed to have something missing.


Wouldn't it be dangerous to the human virtue to live and not be loved?
Shouldn't it say:

8. Life with out love

When he talks about his life I am not sure he ever talked about being loved.
He had great compassion and lived his life for justice.
When he talked about Jesus, I think he loved what he stood for yet struggled that he was all wrapped up in one package deal the included the Trinity. 
Paul says, we can't add one thing to the gospel and if we do well, basically it isn't grace.
It is a gift with out works on our part.
He, like so many can't wrap their mind around the fact that one act of righteousness trumped 330 million gods.  
If Ghandi wore regular clothes I am guessing the grace part made him squirm. I know it makes my skin not fit so well at times when I am busy thinking I can add to what was done with a few good deeds.
After all, who in this day in age had the ability to achieve change in an entire country, deny himself so much and literally change a good bit of the world.

On a personal level he seemed to struggle with relationships, yet he had the ability to move humanity as a whole. Like how do you do that?
Virtue, well, I guess he had that down.
Love, grace and a Savior?
I wonder.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Cooking Lessons - Cambodia

Since I am teaching myself to cook a few new ways I had to take the time for a cooking lesson.
I was thinking Cambodia would have been similar to India but I cound it was very different.
I was suppose to be working on stringing beads with the kids.
And I had been doing that for a few hours, so it seemed like a good time for a break.

The shopping process alone is huge.
Traveling on a tuc-tuc to the open market, hand picking every single thing you need.
She started with home made fish paste, garlic, cilantro.
Fish paste smells pretty close to death in a jar.
Laughing they asked me if I wanted to smell it - thankfully I knew better.
Garlic and cilantro are two of my favorites.

The paste mixture, added to boiling oil and dry seasons.

She chopped a mixture of greens - washed and washed, rinsed, washed and rinsed the greens.

Finally, she added a bowl of fish heads, Knorrs (chicken flavor) and red pepper paste.
The death smell of the fish paste was finally gone leaving me so wishing I was eating lunch with them.
I was thinking a change of pace would have been good about this time on the trip.
However, there was no way I was willing to risk all that can happen when you cook (and eat) with un-filtered water.  No, I have been there, done that let's just say.
Call it what you want, I never want to have it again.

As she worked, she was teaching a few of the older girls (and me too).
The huge pot of rice cooking would soon be covered with the fish stew.
It was time for beading.
My lunch would have to wait.