Thursday, November 4, 2010

do life together.

One of the reasons I love my church so much is the emphasis we place on doing life together. It hasn't always been that way around here, but lately we've really taken a dramatic shift toward more biblical discipleship and fellowship and I LOVE IT!

I stated in a few posts my love for I call lifestyle ministry. Here's an excerpt from that post:

"I seriously LOVE lifestyle ministry. Not the religious kind of ministry. Not the paperwork kind (although I do know its importance). Just ministry by doing life with people. I love just living-- and through living-- encouraging, building relationships, teaching, nurturing, discipling. I absolutely love being around people and just getting to know people more, hearing their stories, learning what they like, etc. I love it. I love teaching them as they teach me at the same time. I love experiencing things together. I love discovering truths together."

I love this! And this is why I love Thursdays! Thursdays are probably my favorite day of the week (I know, I JUST said that yesterday about Wednesdays... but hey, every day can be a favorite, right??). Mondays and Tuesdays are spent mostly on the paperwork, data entry, email responding, phone calling, studying, lesson planning, etc. Then Wednesdays are all focused preparing for and teaching that night. I go to bed Wednesday nights EXHAUSTED because of all the prep, energy, and emotion that goes into each Wed. night service. But then Thursday mornings I wake up so refreshed and ready because I know what's coming on Thursdays-- people!

My day starts off with our food pantry workers coming in around 9:30. This is a group of (mostly) older men and women from our church who volunteer their time each week to serve those in our community needing food. These men and women are AMAZING and I just can't sit up in my office knowing they are downstairs. So I always make my way down there to talk to them for a good 15 or 20 minutes. Then the rest of my day is pretty much discipleship. I meet with a girl at 10:00, someone at lunch, another girl in the afternoon, and then lead our college girls' bible study at 7:00 that night. I LOVE IT! THIS is my favorite part of ministry. I meet with someone for discipleship every week day now, but Thursdays are by far the most discipleship-packed days.

Today was just great. Conversations were great. Growth was evident. I loved it.

So today, I'm thankful for Thursdays. For discipleship. For conversation. For girls who are eager and willing to learn and be molded. For the opportunity to serve in such a cool capacity.

I'm also thankful for...
-Faithfulness. Last night was a huge reminder of the importance of faithful volunteer workers. Workers who are faithful to be there. Faithful to be prepared. Faithful to serve HOWEVER, whenever, in whatever capacity. Thankful for students who are faithful to come, parents who are faithful to bring them. I'm thankful for a band who is faithful to prepare, practice, and show up to lead our time of music. I'm thankful for the group leaders who are faithful to contact their students. I'm thankful for Sunday morning teachers who are so faithful to be there, prepared, ready, on time, etc. This simple concept of faithfulness is one that is SO IMPORTANT, yet SO taken for granted. I wake up every Wednesday just expecting these people to be in their right places that night... and 95% of the time, they are. But the few times they aren't, it DEFINITELY makes a difference and wakes me up to realize how essential that faithfulness is. So I am SO THANKFUL for faithfulness and for people who are willing to be faithful, even when it's hard or not comfortable or just plain not fun.

-Means of communication. I'M SO THANKFUL we can communicate!!! What if we couldn't? That would be SO HORRIBLE. My own thoughts would drive me INSANE. I'm also thankful for the technology that makes long distant communication possible. I got a message last night from a best friend on the other side of the world and the timing of the message was perfect. I needed her.

-A jacket. It was cold today! But, I was warm. I'm thankful that I have the means to be warm and clothed.

-The weather today. It wasn't too cold, but cold enough to sense Christmas is just around the corner. The sun was shining and leaves were bright red. It was perfect.

-Pictures and the ability to take them. I love pictures. I love having my office filled with wonderful faces and wonderful memories.

There are so many more things, and that in itself is something for which I am thankful. God's good. All the time.


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