Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Thanks to Nicole & to Meghann for pouring out your soul in your recent blogs. I feel like I know you better & that something meaningful has been shared. Thanks to Andy for your thoughts on Thura. I'm encouraged.

Sunday, June 22, 2003

So far if I mentioned that name in my blog, it was likely to be a reference to the Pacers head coach. Not this time. For the first time really in my blog career, I'm talking Bible. So here goes. This Isaiah stuff speaks to our world in a fairly powerful way. The first two chapters actually blew me away (I haven't really said or felt that for awhile). Maybe it is just because I understand its historical context better -- Apex just finished this deal where we read 1 & 2 Kings together. At any rate, I think I'll hang out in Isaiah for awhile.

Chapter 1 basically tells the people to screw their fancy religoius services & offerings (which God had actually told them to do years before!) because their hearts were all wrong. He told them to focus on some social justice instead (basically taking care of widows & orphans), and to quit doing the sacred oaks/delights/garden thing (pagan religious things they'd learned from their neighbors --let's just say lots of sex at the temple basically). Sounds a lot like James 1:27 to me.

Chapter 2 folllows up with this calling to humility instead of pride.

All in all, this stuff speaks directly to the evangelical church in America today. It fires me up, empowers me, & encourages me to pursue this simple church thing that is on my heart to the fullest. More in the past few months than ever before, I feel released to be the church and not do church. I thought I was there two years ago, but every few months I am required to let go of even more of what I thought was essential for "church." This fall, I will begin a four-year-prcoess of letting go of church as a career identity as well. I've let go of many of my preconceived notions of what has to happen to have church (I am, after all, so much better at "doing" than "being.")

So I'll be hanging out in Isaiah for awhile.