Santa and I were in Fort Worth (before the tornadoes, whew!) last weekend. I went to Youth Ministry Lab at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with our youth pastor.
As far as conferences go, I am not really attracted by the hype in the Christian media. If you are Christian in America you may know what I mean. Hype like "Fireproof" or "radical" or "Facing the Giants" becomes the end-all-be-all for the moment. If you watch this movie, or read this book all your problems will be magically solved. Or you can define your Christian faith if you read this author or that author.
If a lot of Christians are for something (besides Jesus) I am automatically suspicious. I don't know why . . . I just am. I guess that's just how God made me. So I don't come back from conferences with arm-loads of books and CD's. I refer back to the Bible and fact check the speakers. I might have descended from Thomas. LOL!
If you want to pour over someone else's thoughts on the Bible, hey you are more than welcome to do so. But what sometimes makes a more emotional story (among Christians) has little to do with truth, and I think that it is a sad commentary on our faith. Sometimes (not every time) the dramatic "punch line" of a spiritual story seems to supersede the actual facts of the story.
For example, the story of the man who was praying to God and God told him to take a gallon of milk to a particular address. When he gets there, the people have a sick baby and they have been praying to God for milk so the baby will live.
Whether or not this story is based on facts seems to be lost on people more interested in feeding their emotions. Everyone is looking for a miracle.
Is our faith not enough that we have to spice it up with half truths to make it "seem" more appealing?
Give me Jesus!
He is miraculous enough without us cheapening the Gospel with our lies.
Okay, enough soap box!
I did hear from God at the conference. Don't get the wrong idea. I enjoyed myself and heard the message that God was sending to me, which is:
Not that I was on a path to quit, but I was a little discouraged. I have been so heart-broken lately for these students and really thinking that I was spinning my wheels. You know just discouraged.
During the conference almost every break-out session I attended the first AND last words were "Don't Quit". So after the first 3, I started to take notice. Then all day the second day . . . I got it! "Don't Quit".
See I listen.
God knows me.
He is direct with me.
He loves me. (Me and all my quirkiness, suspicions, directness, bluntness, no-candy-coating self)
While we were there Santa wanted to get some jogging in . . . so I waited on the path and took these shots.
I like Spring!
I do not "love" it. I LOVE Fall . . .
I like Spring!
Spring reminds me of Jesus resurrected and
new life and the God of my life