When Overloaded …

Oct. 15, 2013

Deuteronomy 6:4-6

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.

Managing our emotional health is a challstress-150x150enge. It always surprises me … and frustrates me … how a bad apple can wreak havoc in my life. Seeming little things within a short time frame can quickly overload me. When I stop doing things that help keep a sense of balance, I go to this less stable place.

When I am emotionally overloaded, too often I choose to plop down in front of the TV. Or I smother my worries with fat and sugar. I lack the energy and motivation to exercise … and soon I’m on the gerbil treadmill of one bad choice feeding another.

What are we to do when we feel overloaded? First, admit we ARE overloaded. A part of me never wants to admit I can be overloaded. Realizing this is a first step. I cannot fix anything I do not acknowledge.

Take care of your spiritual life to shore up your emotional life when it is less than stellar. Pray, pray pray. Expect to have an insight from God. Expect God to speak to you through someone else. The irony is that when we feel emotionally vulnerable, we often give up our spiritual health, which makes us feel more miserable.

Next, get off the gerbil treadmill. Decide to take a walk outside. Go someplace less noisy and more reflective. Choose to eat healthy for one meal and then a day. Not a week, just one day. Make one good choice at a time. Expect no more.

Limit interactions with people who drain your energy. You know who those people are. You don’t have to answer their phone call immediately. Have a conversation with someone who gives you energy and then tackle the delayed conversation.

Take 30 minutes and do something just for you. My personal sanctuary is a wonderful bathtub at our house. Several years ago, Rick agreed to redo our bathroom so I could have a jetted bathtub. It is the best therapy session for me. When I slip into the tub filled with bubbles, I close my eyes and momentarily remove myself. I know when I climb out; pressing situations are still at hand. As I watch the bubbles escape down the drain, I visualize my stress draining away.

At times, we need professional help. Whether it’s a visit to your doctor or working with someone to help you make sense of stressful situations, resources are out there. It’s OK to use them.

For years, I had this mantra that “I could handle anything.” I am more realistic now. I know I don’t have to handle everything because I want Jesus to tackle stress with me. This, a few good friends, a few good bubble baths and a good night sleep if possible. I purposely do not drink alcohol when I’m feeling emotional vulnerable. I want to keep my head as clear as possible.

Too often, I hear, “The Bible says that God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.” Actually, it is not biblical and there have been times when I’ve had to deal with more than I wanted to. I do not believe God always causes stress in my life. It can be a combination of my or other’s poor choices. I do not expect God to just wipe it away. What I hope to do is keep myself spiritually strong to muddle through.

Remind me again that when things seem so overwhelming, I truly am not alone. Be by my side constantly, Lord. Remind me of your presence. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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Guidance through Mentoring

Oct. 14, 2013

Psalm 48:14

For this God is our God forever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.mentor

I am a fortunate person. At different life stages, I have had wonderful mentors guide me and provide wise counsel.

My Dad was a lifelong mentor to me. How many times we talked about significant life events and decisions over the phone. He was wise in not telling me what to do. He knew it was my decision. I miss not being able to call him and discuss things.

In high school, I played at the Fall Creek United Church of Christ Church. The pastor was a woman, the first female pastor I observed. She was also a seminary student. She was a wonderful role model. Through her, I discovered that faith was something I needed to develop for myself. Little did I know that she was the woman who provided an example of what being a female pastor would be like.

While working on my undergraduate degree, I accepted an internship putting together a newsletter for a professional organization. A woman was my supervisor. She became a person I often called upon while I worked in the agricultural marketing/public relations/advertising field. I appreciated a wise voice to provide council and insights as I developed a career after college. We continue to be in contact, which I value and appreciate.

The last several years, I have worked with a retired pastor as a mentor. This man has helped keep me grounded, help me understand how to process things, when to act and when not to act. His decades of experience and insightful personality have truly benefitted me numerous times.

I am very appreciative that I have had these and countless other mentors in my life. These people came into my life at very specific times to provide wisdom, insights and guidance. It would be very difficult for me to identify just how many decisions mentors have appropriately coached me through.

This verse from Psalms reminds us that God is our ultimate mentor. I regularly, no daily, pray for wisdom and guidance from God. I am very much aware that God uses other folks to speak to me. Often, God’s council has come through the mouth of a mentor or someone who provides stability to me. This is very important for my emotional well-being. I thank God for these valuable people.

As important as these mentors are to me, I pray I can be a mentor to someone else. Maybe I can be the voice of God to someone. It is just as important for us to be open to this. This is how God sometimes speaks. It’s important for the emotional well-being of those around us.

Thank you, Almighty God, for the invaluable mentors you have brought into my life.  Thank you for making them to be conduits of your wisdom, knowledge and guidance.  Continue to bring God-seeking mentors into my life. May I also be open to the possibility of being your messenger to someone else. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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Emotional Pruning

When the flowers were in bloom ... photo by Linda Weber
When the flowers were in bloom … photo by Linda Weber

Oct. 12, 2013

John 15:2

He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.

Yesterday, I spent some time pruning shrubs and cleaning out the flowerbeds for winter. I wasn’t ready to remove everything. We’re still waiting for a killing frost and some fall plants continue to bloom. I wanted to keep some greenery.

Nonetheless, the flowerbeds were overgrown. It has been a bit harder to keep up with them, when we are home a couple days a week. So, I cut the floppy iris, the brown day lilies, and the dried-up ferns. The Queen Ann’s Lace got a significant haircut. The hostas that still look good were saved. Those whose leaves were yellow and patchy meet the trimming sheers.

Our emotional lives are often like a flower bed. Sometimes our emotions are just sprouting and coming to life. Other times, they are starved for attention and need a bit of water. Bugs can eat away at our emotions, just like the plants around my patio. With the right amount of warmth (sun) and nourishment (water) they can look absolutely stunning. I have some sweet potato vines that are tremendous. They are in pots and partially under the gazebo’s canopy. This allows them to enjoy sun and shade. With plenty of rain recently, the bright green vines have grown around the gazebo poles. The vines are creeping around the patio table and chairs. As leaves have fallen into the potato vines, they have become a mixture of reds and yellows. It’s a beautiful sight.

Our emotions can also be beautiful. But sometimes, hurtful words are directed our way. Sharp words penetrate some people more quickly than others. We may feel pruned.

Every person has a different personality. God had the great wisdom to not create people alike. Because I do not fully understand or appreciate someone else’s personality, I can trample their emotions unintentionally or intentionally. Sometimes we feel the trampled on person. When this happens, it is best to direct our feelings directly to the person.

Many years ago, one of my dear friends disappointed me. I felt let down at a time when I really needed her friendship. It bothered me. One day, I stopped at her house. I told her that we were going to talk about this one time and never discuss it again. She was not aware how my feelings had been hurt. She apologized and wished she had handled the situation differently. After our true confession time and lots of “I’m sorry,” we left it behind. This is how we should be able to speak with Christian friends. Call upon them when we need emotional support and carefully share when we have felt let down. This is how the same mistake does not get repeated. My friend and I were able to prune our relationship, clear away the ugly debris and move on, anticipating new sprouts to grow in our emotional support of each other. That is exactly what happened.

Lord God: some of us have sensitive emotions that are easy bruised. Some of us need more empathy and compassion. All of us have felt our emotional lives pruned at times. May we see the pruning as an opportunity for our emotional lives to be more fruitful. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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A Little Help from My Friends

friendsOct. 11, 2013

Mark 9:2

After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them.

Imperative for my emotional health is a company of friends. These are people I turn to when I’m having a difficult day, need advice, need someone to listen or help problem solve.

I have friends from various life stages. I have friends from childhood, college, various work positions, different churches I have served and ones through professional relationships. There are also friends of friends who have become my friends.

Not all friends are equal. This is just the way it is. There are those I talk to consistently, those I share with several times a year, those who I send and receive Christmas cards from and those who I may not see for years. Technology has changed how people keep in touch with each other. As wonderful as it is, generations are losing the joy of receiving a hand-written letter or card in the mail.

I need a wide variety of friends to support me in different ways. When I am challenged as a pastor, I turn to one of my pastor friends. When family things need perspective, I consult with a different friend. When relating to Rick’s kids and our grandkids, I talk to someone who has already gone through this stage of life.

My relationship with husband Rick is in a separate category. Before we were married, we made a commitment that the relationship between us would always be the most important relationship, after our personal relationships with God. I think this is extremely important. I need to know my husband values me. When our families see our marriage relationship as the second most important relationship in our lives, we model our value and importance of marriage.

Jesus gives us a sound model for friends. He specifically chose a wide variety of friends for his inner circle of 12. This group included Judas, who betrayed Jesus. Within this group, Peter, James and John were even closer to Jesus, indicated when Jesus chooses them to witness the transfiguration. If we ever get irritated with our closest friends, do not forget Peter denied knowing Jesus.

Years ago, I took a seminary class called, “Redeeming the Routines.” We were to examine all areas of our lives, set priorities and goals. One day, the professor shared how he did not have much time for relationships. He decided to invest less into friendships to create time for other priorities. This made me terribly sad. I believe in a Triune God who values relationships as part of the Trinity. I cannot maintain every friendship at the same level. But I do not want to deal with life situations by myself.

My goal is not to have the most Facebook friends. My goal is to have meaningful friendships with people in that when we do have contact, it is significant. I am tickled pink when I have contact with someone who I have not seen for a long time and it was as if I just saw them last week. I’m OK with this. I also pray that I can be emotional support for others, as they have been for me.

Lord God – thank you for the many special people you have brought into my life. I value friendships and deeply appreciate the emotional support they provide me. I pray I can be emotional support for those who need it. For those who lack and desire meaningful friendships, please bring someone into their live.  Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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A Sense of Reality

Oct. 10, 2013

Proverbs 23:19

Hear, my child, and be wise, and direct your mind in the way.

It’s such a common occurrence. Something is said or happens and we interpret one way. But the other person who is involved intended something very different. I hear part of a conversation and walk away making my own conclusion, when in reality; I’m missing a significant part of the situation.

Some people truly are insightful people. They quickly read people and understand a difficult situation. But for most of us, this is not reality. I often stop myself and think: is what I’m thinking reality or something I’ve created in my mind?

This is a part of our emotional health. I stager at the amount of energy I have wasted by allowing my thinking to misinterpret reality. How easy it is for our thoughts to inappropriately corrupt what really is happening. While I have had this happen to me previously and have tried to coach people from getting sucked into it, I find myself again allowing my thoughts to skew what is happening around me. I often forget that there is always more to the story than what I am aware of.

Why is this? I call it the very real presence of evil in this world. Why does it seem that evil is more diligent about taking over my thoughts than the presence of God? Because I am focusing on the wrong things and am not fully seeking God.

I have discovered that for my emotional health, it really is better sometimes to just ask … and accept the response. I can drive myself crazy trying to understand or get inside someone else’s head. If possible, it is more productive to sort through this with the actual person than try and anticipate or predict what someone else intends.

Too often, our natural inclination is to get advice from someone else. Sometimes this is good and helpful. But other times, it makes more sense to go to the source.

Ultimately, where should be get our sense of reality? From Almighty God. We should seek wisdom from God and not relying only on ourselves. The story of King Solomon amazes me. God would grant him whatever he wanted; he could have one wish. Solomon pondered. No, he didn’t need faster chariots or more prized horses. He didn’t seek wealth or position or notoriety. He simply asked for wisdom. If only I could be so willing to ask for this from God then I could keep a clearer sense of reality.

Forgive us for when we have spent endless amounts of time and energy on something that was not reality. Protect us from the evil that tries to lure us away from you. Grant us wisdom to have a strong and daily sense of reality. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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When Emotions Get the Best of Us

breakfast w jesusOct. 9, 2013

John 21:17

He said to him the third time, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter felt hurt because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.

One day I was watching Ellie and Dylan. We spend part of the day at my in-laws. My father-in-law asked for the fourth time if I wanted to make applesauce. I gently told him I didn’t want to. He is now putting apples on the dehydrator  trays. Ellie is assisting him. They diligently work just outside the kitchen door. Tony tells Ellie to put the biggest slices on the trays. She takes a bite off the slices and puts the remainder on the tray. As she is not quite tall enough to open the door, she rings the doorbell to get my attention.

Dylan is in the TV room with my mother-in-law. He gets into everything. My mother-in-law’s defense is telling him, “No.” In the kitchen, I have one ear tuned into what is going on so I can intervene when necessary.

The three-point hitch on the International is not working. Rick’s son found an internet site with information to fix it. I am trying to find the site as my husband hovers over my shoulder. Lunch is on the stove. Ellie is ringing the doorbell. Dylan is making unsafe noises, bubbling erupts from the stove all while Rick questions my searching. This is life on the farm.

How well we cope with various situations and life reflects our emotional health. All kinds of things influence our emotional well-being: hormones, genetics, experiences, our ability to cope, etc. Environmental things like sleep and the weather also affect us. Some days, lots of things can be thrown our way and we deal with them. On other day, one little thing sends us into a tail spin.

Emotional health is using our emotions in a positive way without losing a sense of reality. We go through many life emotional phases. How I think and act today is different when I was in high school, out of college or in my 30’s. I know I’m not nearly as smart today as I thought I was at 25. I use a seasoned experience range when making decisions.

Like spiritual health, emotional health varies from day to day, life season to life season. Within one day, our ability to react and respond changes. Keeping ourselves emotionally healthy for ourselves and the benefit of others is a challenge.

Life didn’t make sense for Peter after Jesus died. While Peter tried to be the star disciple, he failed miserably on the last night of Jesus’ life. When Jesus told Peter he was going to deny Jesus, Peter said it wouldn’t happen, but it did. Peter is emotionally drained. He goes fishing. Jesus shows up on the shoreline and cooks the disciple’s breakfast. After breakfast, three times Jesus asks Peter to feed his sheep. By the third time, Peter is so irritated. His emotions are a wreck. I imagine Peter thinking, “Give it a rest, Jesus!”

There are times when our emotions are a wreck. When another day seems more than we can tackle. When numerous people are clamoring for our attention and we don’t have enough to spread around. If our emotional health is frayed, we can easily go someplace very unhealthy.

Sometimes at the end of a long day, Rick or I will say to each other: “Sorry, you’re getting the leftovers today. That is all that is left.” Sometimes it’s OK for this to happen. We need soft places to land emotionally. We need places and times to just be and restore our emotional health. How do you restore yourself emotionally? What is your “fishing?” When was the last time you gave yourself an emotional break?

Help us to see, Lord God, that our emotional health is very much tied to our spiritual health. Remind us again of something that restores us. Encourage us to make time this week to just be. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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For the World is Loud

Oct. 8, 2

Time to rake!
Time to rake!

 

"Come, on! We can move this tree!"
“Come, on! We can move this tree!”

 

Raking is a big job.
Raking is a big job.

 

I'll try this rake ...
I’ll try this rake …

 

But taking the needles out is way more fun!
But taking the needles out is way more fun!

 

Enticed by the swing.
Enticed by the swing.

1 Corinthians 2:15a

Those who are spiritual discern all things …

“Kwazzy Grandpa” as granddaughter Ellie calls him, was in fine form today. On this beautiful day, he asked Ellie and Dylan to rake “pine leaves.” He loaded them into the wheelbarrow and drove them towards the large pine tree along the driveway with a carpet of needles beneath it.

While still in the wheelbarrow, Kwazzy Grandpa tried to move the tree. Squeals of delight erupted from the wheelbarrow as time after time, Kwazzy Grandpa ran them into the tree. When the tree could not be moved, the kids were dumped into the soft pine needles and “put to work.”

The rakes were older than the hills with several missing tines. Ellie went right to work, raking needles and putting them into the wheelbarrow. Rick’s #1 man, Dylan, was not as cooperative. Removing the needles seemed more interesting than putting them in. Bored with raking, Ellie decided she wanted to swing than rake.

I realized I was watching a metaphor for the spiritual life unfold. We may have good intentions of doing the right and meaningful things … but get sidetracked. When large obstacles (the pine tree) come along, we run into them over and over, thinking they will move out of our way. When they don’t move, our squeals are not ones of delight.

We have plenty of baggage in our lives (needles in the wheelbarrow) that need to be turned over to God. As soon as we give something to God, we do not trust it with God and pull it back out, thinking we can do better on our own. Just when we make a commitment to really get our spiritual lives on track, something seems sexier (swinging). We get distracted and leave growing our spiritual life for another day.

There are four significant areas of our lives: spiritual, mental, emotional and physical. Most of us probably struggle to some degree in each area. How are we to improve ourselves? By making baby-step changes in each area. I contend the first area to start is with our spiritual lives. Too often, this seems too difficult and we choose an area we think we can make quicker progress.

There was another lesson from today. While I was in the house getting lunch ready, the doorbell rang. This is Ellie’s way of announcing she wants me because she cannot open the door. Upon opening the door, she yells, “Dianne, you have to come and see Kwazzy Grandpa’s eyes!” Why should I be surprised to see Kwazzy Grandpa has an acorn stuck in one eye and a pine cone in the other? (Unfortunately, I hadn’t brought along the camera.) Do I wonder why Ellie calls him Kwazzy Grandpa?

A Bible passage came to mind: Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’seye, but do not notice the log in your own eye?  Or how can you say to your neighbor, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye. – Matthew 7:3-5

Too often, spiritual growth gets distracted by putting more energy into the speck in someone else’s eye while ignoring the boulder in our own.

Folks: it becomes easy to get distracted in our spiritual lives. We are busy people. After I put Ellie and Dylan down for naps at their house, I again read the words on a sign above the kitchen sink: “Make time for quiet moments as God whispers and the world is loud.” This is exactly why we need time for our spiritual lives.

Forgive us, Lord God, when we have gotten distracted by seemingly other more important things in our lives that creating time and space with you. We are sorry that the world’s loud noise overpowers your whispers. Quiet our worlds so that we can grow in love with You, Your Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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Creating Space

journalOct. 7, 2013

John 6:15

Jesus knew that the people planned to come and take him by force and make him their king, so he left and went into the hills alone. 

My Grandma used to keep a diary. She would record the weather and any significant events of her day. She kept these for years. Today, writing in a diary is not as cool. Today, we journal.

I have journaled on and off over the years. It depends on whether I make time for it or not. Sometimes I record events of my life. Sometimes I write down meaningful Bible verses. Other times, I record sentences or thoughts I read in a book. I often end with a written prayer.

There have been times when I have not been journaling … and I feel bad. Like I’m a Christian failure. That I don’t measure up. That I’m not doing everything I can to guide my spiritual life. Then I remember. I’m not sure Jesus journaled every day. I’m not sure Jesus journaled at all.

Jesus was very familiar with the Torah – the first five books of our Bible which are also found in the Jewish scriptures. Jesus quoted them so often. As a young Jewish boy, he would have studied them at his local synagogue. As he became a teenager, he memorized chunks of the Torah. As a man in ministry, Jesus did many things to grow his spiritual life. He took time to be with God – just by himself. He regularly prayed and sorted through things with his Heavenly Father. He found ways to specifically nurture his spiritual life.

This is a wonderful example for us. For some Christians, journaling daily can be very meaningful. For others, it isn’t. What we do need are a couple ways we can spend time with God; without distractions and interruptions. We do not have to do these things every day, but it is important that we know how to connect with God.

Tonight I found myself in the car all by myself. While six months ago, this was a daily occurrence, things are different now. Either some of the grandkids, my mother-in-law or my husband are usually riding with me. I tried to listen to a book on tape, but the CD player wasn’t working. I listened to NPR for a while. Finally, I turned off the radio and spent time with God. This is a way I often pondered things as a pastor. It’s been awhile since I’ve done this. I didn’t have a journal ready to whip out and record every significant thought. I didn’t need to. I just needed quiet, uninterrupted time with God.

How do you accomplish this in your life? Do you have a way? When was the last time you made space to just be with God? God’s waiting … don’t keep God waiting forever.

Thank you for the example Jesus modeled of creating time just for you. It’s easy for me to think I don’t have time for this. But then again, am I really busier than Jesus? Whatever is meaningful for me, help me recall this again. Encourage me to carve out tiny spaces to help me grow spiritually with you. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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Talkin’ with the Big Guy

Man holding arms up in praise against golden sunsetOct. 6, 2013

Psalm 25:1

Lord, I give myself to you. 

One day, Ellie and I were cleaning out the water bucket for the sheep. She turns to me and sings (albeit a bit off-key), “Oh, the Lord is good to me.”

Shocked, I say to Ellie, “Where did you hear that?”

Ellie says, “Don’t be silly, Dianne. We learned that together at Bible School.”

For those who are trying to remember where those words come from, here’s how the prayer goes: Oh, the Lord is good to me. And so I thank the Lord. For giving me, the things I need, the sun and the rain and the apple seeds. The Lord is good to me. Amen. Amen. Amen, amen, amen. Ahhh-men.

I learned this singing prayer at 4-H Camp a hundred years ago. We called it the Johnny Appleseed prayer. While at VBS this summer, we sang it before we ate our evening snack. Weeks later, Ellie spewed out those words.

I said back to Ellie, “You are absolutely right. The Lord is good to us.”

Maybe it’s not the fanciest prayer in the world, but it’s a prayer. It’s one that a three-year-old can say and in her own way, believe. When the kids are with me and we eat, we often sing the Johnny Appleseed song as grace. Yes, Virginia, it is a prayer.

People sometimes say they don’t know how to pray. I think prayer is just talkin’ with God. God doesn’t expect fancy phrases or dramatically designed sentences with words hard for us to pronounce. Nope, God simply wants us to talk to God.

I really, really try to begin and end my day in prayer. In the morning, I ask for grace and guidance, for patience and firmness at just the right times. I ask God for wisdom and that I am available for God’s service throughout the day. At night, I end the day with the Lord’s Prayer.

What about the rest of the day? After reading scripture, I have a few quiet minutes with God. Sometimes I write out my prayer in a journal. One smart Christian lady told me years ago that a prayer journal is helpful because it helps you see answered prayer. Sometimes I use recite a prayer from a prayer book.

The last thing I think God wants us to do is to make prayer something we are not comfortable with. God simply wants our heart, our soul, us. There is not right or wrong way to pray. It’s simply sharing from the heart. Throughout the day, I use “one-sentence prayers,” in which I share what is on my mind. I also find when I am in the car alone a great time to have a chat with God.

What are your prayer rituals? Do you have them? Is there another way you can create more time to share your heart with God? I encourage you to make talkin’ with the Big Guy a regular and consistent part of your day.

Yes, Lord, you are good to me. And let me thank you for all the things you bless me with this day. None of it is insignificant. May time chatting with you be an important and meaningful part of my daily life. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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Community of Believers

circle of handsOct. 5, 2013

Ecclesiastes 4:12

Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

If something awful happened to you or a close loved one, who would be the first person you would call? How many people would you call? These people are your closest community of believers.

I am a person who likes being around other people. Yet, there are times when I love to have time just for myself. I know it is very helpful for me to explore challenges, share joys and sort through things in life with other people. I depend upon other people to support me. They are my community of believers.

Community is as biblical as it gets. Look at the verse above. “Three strands is not quickly broken.” Why three and not two or four? I believe it is because of the Trinity. This sentence is a reminder that the Trinity was together from the beginning and will be together forever.

The basis for Christian community should always be rooted in how the three persons of the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – are in community themselves. One person of the Trinity cannot be independent from the other three. They are always together, even when Jesus was walking this earth. The Holy Spirit and the Father were a part of Jesus’ death on the cross and every other act he participated in.

If community is necessary within the Triune God, then should it not also be part of our spiritual journeys? If one person of the Trinity needs the other two, why should Christians think we can successfully grow spiritually by alone? I do need time to read scripture and pray by myself. But I also know that when I explore how faith integrates with my daily life, this is best done in the context of other believers.

Not every conversation I have with someone must include a spiritual nature. Sometimes we just need space to be friends. When situations come along that do need more serious conversation, I pray I can be a person who listens and has compassion because I know there will be times when I need to call upon others. I am thankful to have a wide circle within my community. Thanks be to God.

Sometimes we forget, Lord God that you do speak to us. It’s just through someone who is part of our community of believers. Thank you for bringing into my life people who support me and journey with me. May I be this for someone else this week. Amen.

Blessings –

Dianne

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