Why I Don’t Practice Lent

When I was a little girl, I knew Lent as a tradition that was largely practiced by my friends in the Catholic faith. In recent years, the tradition has become more and more popular among Protestant Evangelical Christians. Suddenly there is an avalanche of magazine articles, books, and blog posts expounding on why we should practice Lent and how we should go about practicing Lent.

I’ve got to tell you, it makes me wary.

Not that there’s anything inherently wrong with practicing Lent. God uses “spiritual facilitators” in our lives all the time. For me, it’s being out in nature or listening to music that helps me connect with Him. So if giving something up or changing your typical behavior for 40 days helps you focus on the beauty of Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection and helps you to develop a closer relationship with God, then more power to you.

Here’s why I’m cautious: First, we want to make sure that practicing Lent is not an attempt to appease God after having lived a God-free life the rest of the year. Church on Sunday, ashes on Wednesday, and 40 days of Lent does not a relationship make. He does not want our religious activity. He wants our hearts. (I Samuel 15:22) (Psalm 51:16-17)

Second, we want to be super careful of the example we set, of the expectations we put on ourselves and others. If we practice Lent, we need to be clear that it’s NOT an obligation that every “good Christian” should fulfill. Lent is not a biblical directive. It’s not even a biblical concept. I’m concerned that practicing Lent will be misinterpreted as One More Thing we must do to be “right” with God.

The whole point of Christianity is that we can’t earn our salvation. We can’t earn God’s love. We can never do enough to be perfect. Christianity is all about God’s love for us and grace, grace, grace. But if the Christian faith is about grace then why are we adding customs and rules and rituals?

Jesus had this same beef with the religious people of his day. Jesus was crazy about the normal people; it was the religious people who ticked Him off. In Matthew 23 He accused the Pharisees and teachers of the law of piling heavy burdens on people’s shoulders with the extra religious rules and obligations they added. Now let me clarify, many of these religious people meant well. They were mostly good guys who tried to live good lives and follow the tenets of their faith … just like most of us who call ourselves Christians today. But they made one enormous mistake: they made it all about behavior and not about a real relationship with the living God. We want to make sure we’re not doing the same thing today. Spiritual facilitators are great. Getting stuck in rituals is not.

Galatians 5:1 says, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”

I think that sometimes we forget that we’re free. I know that I do. Deep inside I know I’m far from perfect, and sometimes I fall into the trap of looking for ways to make myself better. Maybe it’s to get God’s approval, or maybe just so that I can face myself in the mirror. Do you sometimes feel that way, too? We forget that Jesus already did the work for us when He died. We will never be perfect while we’re on this planet, but Jesus is enough. When we said yes to Him, He wiped our slate clean and we are FREE. Free to love Him just because we love Him and not because we have to earn His approval. Free to love others just because we love others and not because we have to get more brownie points. Free to mess up and fail and free to fall into our Heavenly Dad’s lap, knowing that He loves us anyway. Free. Free. Free. So why are we adding rituals?

I believe that some people truly experience Lent as a sacred time of drawing closer to God. Maybe it helps you focus on the meaning of Christ’s death and resurrection and the sacrifice He made. Maybe Lent helps you to experience a deeper relationship with God. If Lent is like that for you, then go for it! Let God use whatever means He wants to bring you closer to Himself.

But if you are practicing Lent out of habit, or to make yourself feel right with God, or if you’re doing it out of obligation or guilt, or you find yourself thinking, “Oh great. That’s one MORE thing I should be doing” then RUN! Because “It is for freedom that Christ has set [you] free! Stand firm, then, and do not let [yourself] be burdened again by a yoke of slavery!” Be free.

Share

Bride of Christ or Bride of Frankenstein?

Sometimes I have just had it up to here with the Church. I’m not talking specifically about my home church (little “c”) but rather the big “C” Church. You know, the “Family of Believers,” “Christians.” Some days I feel that we’re more like the “Bride of Frankenstein” than the “Bride of Christ.” We sure can get snarky. A while ago I had a conversation with a Christian who was just plain mean. Intolerant. Uncompassionate. Smug. Self-satisfied. Blech. It made me mad because that kind of attitude is so unlike Jesus and it can give such an inaccurate picture of Christ. Jesus is loving and compassionate and funny and caring and just AWESOME. But then I hear some of my friends refer to Christians as judgmental or mean and I think WHAT??? There’s been a disconnect somewhere, and I’ve seen some Jesus-loving friends wash their hands of the whole group. Jesus? YES. Love Him. Christians? Hmmm … well.

But you know, we shouldn’t be surprised that Christians can be jerks. It even kind of makes sense if you think about it. We are, every one of us, pretty messed up.

“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.”  Titus 3:3-5

Jesus came BECAUSE we’re all messed up. We might be able to hide it for a while, but deep down we humans are plagued by insecurities and desires and self-centeredness so it’s no wonder that the nastiness comes out sometimes. I mean, Christians are not perfect. We don’t really claim to be (although, God knows, we sometimes pretend to be), and I don’t know why I expect that of myself and everyone else who wears the name. We’re in process, hopefully becoming more like Jesus every day as we get to know Him better. So I’ve decided I’m not going to wash my hands of the whole messed up bunch of us, myself included. One reason is because if Jesus can forgive us when we’re acting like jerks, I think He can help me forgive, too. And the second reason is because, well, sometimes the Church is FANTASTIC.

I know, I know, you didn’t see it coming. You all have whiplash now and I’m very sorry.

Today I spent some time with a friend who loves Jesus. We were talking about all sorts of stuff like our families and our jobs and patio furniture and I don’t know what all else. But you know, God came up an awful lot, too. It’s kind of like being in love for the first time … you know that time right after you fall in love when you think about that person all the time and no matter who you’re talking to suddenly you can’t shut up about HIM because HE IS SO WONDERFUL SO EVERYONE ELSE MUST THINK HE IS WONDERFUL TOO. Yes, that’s exactly it. We can’t shut up about Him. And the more we talked about God the more we both remembered how faithful He is and how fun He is to hang out with and all the cool stuff He does to show us that He loves us. It was like pressing the reset button. Life feels pretty heavy sometimes. But that conversation brought to the forefront all the stuff I know is true but had kind of shifted to the back burner: God loves me. He loves me no matter what I do or say. He cares about the things that concern me. He’s got this.

My whole outlook had changed. That’s the Bride of Christ in action. I think that’s why God tells us not to give up on meeting together. He knows we’re going to tick each other off, but He also knows that we’re going to reel each other back in.

We’re a pretty motley crew. But I think I’m willing to forgive the Bride of Frankenstein, because I am absolutely smitten with the Bride of Christ. She is so beautiful.

 

Share

Welcoming the Seasons

This morning as I brought a letter out to my mailbox, I noticed my daffodils. The buds are just starting to peek through the green, promising explosions of yellow and gold in the coming weeks. I thought, “finally!” Later in the day I stood at my front door, baking in the heat of the sun coming through the glass and thought “finally!” I am SO ready to welcome spring. But that’s nothing new to me. Living in New England with its wildly varying weather, I welcome each season.

When I see the first cornflower-blue skies of summer, hear the first cicada of the season, feel the sun beat hot upon my head as I run in the morning, I think “finally!” When I see the first maple leaves turn bright red, feel the crisp air of fall, drink my first glass of apple cider, I think “finally!” When the first few flakes of snow begin to fall and I think of my cozy little home filled with warmth from our fireplace, I think “finally!” It’s easy to welcome the seasons because each one feels new and fresh, yet filled with happy memories of previous seasons.

It’s not so easy to welcome the changing seasons of my life. At one of my recent speaking engagements, I was sitting at dinner with a group of women and we were discussing “Deep Freeze,” the winter teen retreat that my church youth group attends at Camp Berea. I said, “My boys go to those! Wait. My boy goes to those. Wait. My “boy” just attended his last one this past winter. My youngest is about to graduate, so he’s done.” The realization hit me like a ton of bricks. My boys have grown too old for teen retreats. Another season is past, another season arriving. And I do not think “finally!” I think “ouch.”

I spent some time wondering why it bothers me so much, saying good-bye to a season in life and welcoming the new one. Because as many “lasts” as we’ve had this year, we’ve also had a lot of happy “firsts.” What is it that makes it so hard to see the seasons change? Is it fear of the future? A longing for the past? Reluctance to let go of the familiar? I suspect that the answer is different for every person and every situation.

Or perhaps, instead of reluctantly releasing a current season, you’re in a season that you’re dying to get out of. Or maybe you’re like King Solomon, lamenting that nothing ever changes, that everything is “Same Stuff, Different Day:”

“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens.

What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.”
(Ecclesiastes 3:1, 1:9)

Sometimes it’s hard to welcome the season we’re currently in. Or currently enduring.

Whether you’re waiting for a season to end, reluctant to embrace a new season, or like King Solomon, wishing for something, ANYthing to happen, maybe you’ll feel encouraged, as I did, by what King David wrote:

“But I trust in you, Lord;
I say, ‘You are my God.’
My times are in your hands.”
(Psalm 31:14-15a)

When David wrote this, he was being conspired against by men who wanted him dead. Much of Psalm 31 is a lament about all the bad things that people wanted to do to him. (My little season-change issues feel awfully insignificant when I think about David’s circumstances!) So when I come to this verse, it reads like a defiant statement of hope. It’s almost like David is instructing his soul: “I WILL believe. I WILL trust. Despite these circumstances, God loves me and will take care of me. My times – my seasons – are in his hands.”

So I take hope in this statement in the midst of my changing seasons, and instruct my soul likewise. No matter what season I am in, no matter what season is approaching, “I trust in you, Lord – my times are in your hands.” Whether the season seems good or bad or the changes are big or small, our good God who loves us will carry us through this season and the next and the next. Not just carry us, though. David continues on to say,

“How abundant are the good things
that you have stored up for those who fear you,
that you bestow in the sight of all,
on those who take refuge in you.
Be strong and take heart,
all you who hope in the Lord.”
(Psalm 31:19,24)

Good things. In ALL seasons. Because God loves us.

It still hurts my heart sometimes that my sweet babies are all grown up. The winds are beginning to blow and the seasons are changing again. But instead of longing for the hot blue-sky days of summer, I’m going to enjoy the quiet process as the oak leaves turn golden. I’m going to relish the crisp air and the taste of cider. When the first snowflakes fall, I will catch them on my tongue. I’m going to look forward to the first buds of spring. I’ll choose to welcome the seasons as they arrive. And I’m going to keep repeating King David’s words:

“But I trust in you, Lord;
I say, ‘You are my God.’
My times are in your hands.”

Share

A Blog Post That’s Really an Album Recommendation

A friend loaned this album to me, and I wasn’t sure how it was going to go. I’m a classic rock kind of girl, and I knew that this artist leaned towards quiet, acoustic music. The album was exactly that – quiet, somewhat acoustic (think Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” and “Mercy Street”) – and yet here I am, writing my first ever recommendation for an album. Which I think everyone should buy immediately. It’s that good.

I listened to “Light for the Lost Boy” for the first time on a long drive by myself, and within a few minutes I was surprised to find that the music had touched me so deeply that my eyes were welling and my nose was prickling. My response didn’t arise from sadness or even joy, but from the relief of hearing truth: Pain is real, and so is God, and we carry on. Not like those who pretend that everything is perfect and happy-clappy all the time, and not like those whose pretentious cynicism leaves us cold and empty. We carry on with hope.

Andrew Peterson pulls no punches; he faces the reality of pain, of the hardness and the beauty of life, the ache we feel as we watch the children grow so fast and see the years of our lives fly away. And then Peterson juxtaposes these realities with the earth-shattering goodness of God. I have never seen the depth of God’s love written so clearly into music. The way salt makes flavors more intense, the sweet things sweeter and the savory things more savory, the pain is faced head on, sprinkled liberally in the lyrics as it is in life, making the sweetness of God sweeter, His power more comforting, His beauty more entrancing. If you know lots about God but don’t really know Him well personally, then this album is one of the best introductions I could imagine.

When I think about this music, the word that keeps coming to mind is “healing.” I remember when I was a little girl and skinned my knee, how my mother would take care of me. She’d soak my knee in warm water, gently rubbing to get all the dirt and the gravelly bits out. It would hurt like crazy but in a good way because I knew we had to get the gunk out in order for me to heal. Then she’d gently dry my knee with a towel, put some soothing ointment on the cuts, and give me a hug. The healing had begun. That’s how I feel when the last track ends and my iPod goes silent.

This is the perfect album for imperfect, broken people. And really, aren’t we all?

Share

This is What NOT to Do

Have you seen it? It’s yet another video gone viral, and it’s called “Facebook Parenting: for the troubled teen.” In the video, a father reads and responds to a letter that his 15-year-old daughter posted on Facebook. In the letter, she rants and swears and complains about her parents. In the video, he calls her names and humiliates her, and then he shoots her computer. Yes, shoots, like with a gun. Friends, this is what NOT to do in response to a rebellious child.

When this video first appeared all over Facebook, I saw many comments on the post which applauded the father’s behavior, for “laying down the law,” so to speak.  I was absolutely aghast at how many people thought that this method of parenting was not only okay, but should be held up as a good example. Firm parenting is absolutely essential; discipline and repercussions are important parts of raising our children. But destruction and humiliation? Really?

There may be a better way. 

Discipline Consistently

“Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.” Proverbs 13:24

We care enough to discipline even when it’s inconvenient, even when it’s easier to ignore the behavior. Little misbehaviors can lead to big ones down the road. When we love our children, we need to be firm and to take the time – every time – to teach them the right way to live.

Discipline with Respect

“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1

 “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” Ephesians 4:2

How we treat our children is going to be a big part of how they will treat us. Oh, sure, they’ll have disrespectful moments. Don’t we all? But if we are consistently treating our children with respect, talking to them like intelligent human beings instead of enforcing our rules by way of bullying and intimidation (and by shooting laptops), then they will learn how to treat us and others with respect as well.

Discipline with Love

“I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love; I lifted the yoke from their neck and bent down to feed them.” Hosea 11:4

They KNOW when we’re disciplining them just because we’re mad. That’s not discipline; that’s punishment. When we discipline them with love, “speaking the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15), we’re doing it because we care about them, and care about the people that they are becoming. We want them to live full, good, godly lives, have healthy relationships, and make good choices. When our discipline is liberally coated with love, they know it and they respond to that, even if that response doesn’t come to fruition until later.

My husband, Brian, and I are the proud parents of one adult son and one so-close-he-can-taste-it almost-adult son. They are two of the most fantastic people I have ever met. I love them, of course – I am their mother, after all. But I also really LIKE them.  You know the difference? When our boys were young, many people warned me that the teen years are awful, that my sweet children would turn into monsters, “people you hardly even know anymore.” I’m here to tell you that the teen years do not have to be that way. We have been having a blast with our boys, right through the “monster” years. Of course we’ve had our ups and downs and I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but ask either of them and they’ll tell you that they have never doubted that we love them (are absolutely bonkers about them, actually) and that when we disciplined them it was because we loved them. It can work. Did we have to do some firm parenting? Absolutely. Were there some tough repercussions? You bet. But I’ve got to tell you, we wouldn’t have gotten very far by humiliating them, “laying down the law,” and shooting their laptops.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what that young girl’s response may have been to the video her dad posted. Do you think she feels loved and valued by her father? Do you think she feels she can trust him? I can just picture it … “Oh, NOW I see the error of my ways and I’ll never do anything like that again. I love you, Dad!” Not likely.

Romans 2:4 says that it is God’s kindness, His tolerance and patience, that leads us to repentance. Now that’s my kind of Father. Why would we want to offer our children any less? When we discipline our children, we need to speak with them face to face. We need to treat them with the respect due to any human being; we are all made in the image of God. We need to tell them how much we love them, and why their behavior is unacceptable. We need to explain the repercussions, perhaps even hashing them out together with the child. Then we need to pray together, and reiterate how much we love them.

That’s how to do it.

Share

Grace in the Mundane

This morning as I was running I listened to an interview with an author who did most of her research in Paris. The bulk of the medical archives she needed were located there, so she lived in Paris for months at a time while she was working. My brain stopped listening to the podcast and started imagining what it would be like to live in Paris. I had visions of buying fresh crusty bread at the neighborhood boulangerie, lingering over a glass of wine as the stars sparkled on the Seine, and walking halls that echoed with the voices of a rich history. It sounded like a lovely and magical life. A little voice whispered, “but you have that, too.” Me? With my mundane life? I stopped running. Lovely and magical? Yes. Of course.

 I looked up. The evergreens lean over our rural street like a tunnel of emerald. Bright red berries cling to stark brown branches by the side of the road, calling my eyes like a beacon. This morning I woke up to my husband’s kiss as he left for work. I read my Bible to the light of hundreds of little sparkling colored lights on our Christmas tree. The steam from my mug of pumpkin coffee tickles my nose as I click away at the keyboard. Lovely. Magical. More than that … grace.

 Little pinpoints of grace, like thousands of stars, rain down into every moment of our lives. Scattered broadly and thickly, hardly noticed most times, but real all the same. A hug from a friend, an email at just the right time, a slice of chocolate cake, quiet rainy days, down comforters and fuzzy slippers, unexpected providence,  a song that keeps playing at top volume inside one’s head, a doggy kiss on the cheek … grace, grace, grace.

What can one say in response to such lavish gifts? One thing only. Oh, thank You. Thank You. Thank You.

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (I Thessalonians 5:16-18)

 

Share

First Snow

First snow of the season on an autumn day. Bright sun shines down through white-tipped, green and gold mottled leaves. Snowy clumps and weighty drops are dislodged from heavily laden branches. They rain down in a steady shower of gleaming gemstones, creating multitudes of muted percussions as they hit the packed earth; thrum, thrum, thrum. Glassy, ice-encrusted bushes glisten in the golden autumn sun. Blooming chrysanthemums, at the peak of their glory, bow low beneath a crust of shimmering diamonds.

There is a Creator, and He loves us.

“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”  Romans 1:20 (NLT)

 

Share

Mama Mia!

I love being a mom. Many of you may be surprised to hear that I am the proud momma of about a dozen children. Well, sort of. I have two of my own, but I’m also an honorary momma for a whole gaggle of kids. It’s one of my favorite parts of being in God’s family – now our family extends far beyond our biological one! Years ago, my friends and I discovered that our children would easily go to any of the moms in our playgroup for a hug, a little comfort, or to share a fun new discovery. We all became “honorary moms” to each other’s children. As the years have passed, we’ve noticed that our kids sometimes go to these other moms for a listening ear or a bit of advice. It’s nice to know that when my children aren’t with me, these honorary moms can offer support, love, and wise, godly counsel. And I can do the same for their kids. Over the years, the group of my own “honorary offspring” has grown and now encompasses toddlers to teens, both boys and girls. (I finally have “daughters!”:-) This past Mother’s Day, I was deeply blessed as one child after another came up to me to give me a hug and to wish me a Happy Mother’s Day. It’s a treasure, and a trust.

But this treasure (and responsibility!) is not limited to those of us who have children. Whether or not you have your own biological children, God calls us all into ministry and speaks specifically to us about taking our place as honorary mothers.

To those without children, God says in Isaiah 54:

“Sing, barren woman, who has never had a baby.
   Fill the air with song, you who’ve never experienced childbirth!
You’re ending up with far more children
   than all those childbearing women.” God says so!
“Clear lots of ground for your tents!
   Make your tents large. Spread out! Think big!
Use plenty of rope,
   drive the tent pegs deep.
You’re going to need lots of elbow room
   for your growing family.”
Isaiah 54 (The Message)

And to all of us:

Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good.
Titus 2:3 – 8

By following God’s direction, we can be honorary/spiritual moms to those special young people that He has placed in our lives. We can celebrate that God is calling us to a love that is big and “spread out,” calling us to an influence that becomes a legacy through the generations, and I thank God for these precious lives that, in addition to my own children, God has blessed me to be a part of.

Share

Free, indeed!

I just overheard a conversation between my son and his friend from school, and I had to share. A little bit of background – they’re studying vocabulary because they have a quiz in English class tomorrow. Here’s the conversation:

Friend: “Penance.”
Colby: I don’t know.
Friend: You don’t know what penance means?
Colby: No. What does it mean?
Friend: You go to church and you don’t know what penance means???
Colby: Nope.

I love that! I love it on so many levels. I love it because Jesus paid the price, so there’s no penance that we need to pay. We just accept His free gift. And I love it because all that Colby knows is that he is saved and loved by Jesus. There’s no fear, no sense of guilt or needing to pay penance. And lastly, I love it because Colby’s friend doesn’t know Jesus yet, and Colby is expressing a true picture of the Christ-centered life – not full of shame and guilt and penance, but full of freedom and love.

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed!”
John 8:36

Free, indeed!

Share

Service with a Smile

I just love Monadnock Bible Conference. It’s one of my all-time favorite places on this earth. Okay, so Hawaii is pretty good, too. Oh – and Disney World. I love Disney World. But Monadnock is HOME. Every time I go there I feel like I’m coming home again. Brian and I first went there as teens for various youth events, and the special place that it holds in our hearts grows with each passing year. Our children started going to Monadnock once they hit their teen years, and they, too, have formed an attachment to Monadnock, similar to the one we formed over twenty years ago. The magnetic draw is almost inexplicable. Sure, the people are great. Sure, the food is incredible. But I think the real thing that sets it apart is the sweet Spirit of the Lord that just permeates the place. You know how some places just have a miasma of darkness over them? Well, think of Monadnock as the anti-darkness. It’s a beautiful thing.

This past year we began volunteering at Monadnock on a regular basis. I’ve been on the worship team for their women’s events several times, and Colby has volunteered with our church youth group a few times, but it was a whole new experience to volunteer together as a family. This past weekend was one of those volunteer weekends. We got to volunteer in the kitchen, and let me tell you what a fabulous time it was! We worked hard and played hard and scrubbed our hands raw and all the while we felt this sweet happiness.  Something rang true about it … like “Aha! This is one of the things we were created for! To serve people and serve the Lord through these things that we are doing. And there’s this crazy joy that fills my heart while I’m doing it …” It made me look at service in a different way.

We know that God calls us to service. That’s clear in His Word. You might be part of the proverbial 20% that does 80% of the work or you might be part of the 80% who has a bunch of reasons why service wouldn’t fit into your life and you figure that surely God’s call to service doesn’t apply to you. Well, I’m talking to both groups.

20% people: Don’t grow weary, friends! God has called you to His service and He has something lovely in mind!

80% people: You’re missing out on something really cool! Come and join the party!

Yes, service is sacrifice. It is hard work and inconvenient and it messes with our schedules and our wallets. We get tired and sometimes we feel unappreciated. But I think that God didn’t just call us to service for our “good” and to “grow” us. (Oh, I get so tired of that perception of God, as if He’s a spoon-wielding meany shoving cod liver oil down our throats “for our good.”) Although growth and stretching are surely part of His plan, I think that God has called us to service for our JOY! It’s another touch-point to imitate Christ and become closer to Him. (Read John 13 for what Jesus has to say on this topic.)

And with that new perspective, we served with great joy! Let me tell you, it’s an amazing thing to see a teenage boy scrubbing pots and pans with joy. :-) We’re home now, but it hasn’t ended there … suddenly, making a bed is a service of joy. Cooking a meal for my family is a service of joy. Praying for a friend is a service of joy. It’s changing my perspective and how I’m responding to things. Furthermore, I am praying that this little kernel I’ve learned will stay with me and be one more baby step as I endeavor to become more like Christ.

This August we’ll be volunteering for a whole week during the teens’ summer camp. Now THAT is going to be wild. :-) Say a prayer for us, would ya? And I’ll be sure to give you an update when we get back.

♥♥♥

John 13:12-17

When [Jesus] had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share