Thursday, October 30, 2008

Autopilot

Do you ever have those moments where you realize that you have no idea what you're actually doing? When you're performing a task that is so routine and suddenly your realize that you totally were not thinking? That just happened to me. I am here at work and the phone rang....I reached for it unconsciously and started talking...what I meant to say was,

"Library media center, this is Lorrie"

but what happened was..

"Library media..." and I drew a blank. I couldn't find my next word. There was this awkward moment that seemed to stretch a long time where my mind was frantically trying to catch up with my actions to process what I was doing and to continue my sentence...

"center! Library media center, this is Lorrie" I finally blurted out.

Thankfully the call was not overly significant. "Wake up, Lorrie!" I mentally told myself as I hung up the phone. "Are you living today or are you just existing in la la land?" I'm trying to actually start living for the rest of today!

Are you living today? Or are you just alive today?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Lessons from Dr. Blanco



"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” ~ Genesis 3:15

Something I'd never really noticed was how God says "I will put enmity..." What would have happened after Adam and Eve had sinned if God didn't put that enmity between humans and Satan?

Great Controversy enlightens in chapter 30...

"God declares: "I will put enmity." This enmity is not naturally entertained. There exists naturally no enmity between sinful man and the originator of sin. Both became evil through apostasy. Had not God specially interposed, Satan and man would have entered into an alliance against Heaven; and instead of cherishing enmity against Satan, the whole human family would have been united in opposition to God. Satan tempted man to sin, as he had caused angels to rebel, that he might thus secure co-operation in his warfare against Heaven. But when Satan heard the declaration that enmity should exist between himself and the woman, and between his seed and her seed, he knew that his efforts to deprave human nature would be interrupted; that by some means man was to be enabled to resist his power."

"It is the grace that Christ implants in the soul which creates in man enmity against Satan. Without this converting grace and renewing power, man would continue the captive of Satan, a servant ever ready to do his bidding. But the new principle in the soul creates conflict where hitherto had been peace. The power which Christ imparts enables man to resist the tyrant and usurper. Whoever is seen to abhor sin instead of loving it, whoever resists and conquers those passions that have held sway within, displays the operation of a principle wholly from above."

What happened when Adam and Eve fell is that their power of choice was taken away from them. Without God's grace we would be mindless servants of Satan. In fact we would be warring against Heaven! Scary thought, huh? What is so fascinating is that as soon as Adam and Eve sinned, Jesus stepped up and immediately took responsibility for the action of sin that grace might be administered. (Genesis 3:15 is the first prophecy of the Messiah to come.) The enmity placed between humans and Satan is the power of choice being reinstated. While our character is now sinful instead of perfect as Adam and Eve's that choice against evil is still ours'. It's a second chance. Isn't God good?



(images: http://www.mts.net/%7Ewarreno/eden.jpg, http://healmenow.files.wordpress.com/2008/07/grace3.jpg)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Testimony


I'm going to MEXICO!

With the ERC

In July

And preaching an evangelistic series!

HOW EXCITING!

Now, why would Lorrie, who is certainly not renowned for her speaking ability and desire to be a specticle excited about such a thing?

Well, cause God has given her joy in all things and made it clear thus far that this is His will for her.

That's EXCITING!

Let me share the story.....

I agreed to sign up for an interview with the ERC early this year. It was an exciting thought of something to do after graduation. I preferred to go to Argentina when I signed up. It's in May. Mexico is in the middle of the summer. Why would I want to go smack-dab in the middle of the summer. It is illogical. And I like to be logical. So I interviewed and they told me Argentina is filled. In my mind I went, "ok, well, that's that." I left without saying yay or nay. I talked to my mother. "Lorrie go for it!" "But Mom...." As days went by, I thought, well, my life after graduation is a black hole. You won't have this opportunity, certainly this easy, probably ever again. So, go for it. So in my mind I thought, "Well, ok. I'll follow this path and see where it leads." A Bit half-hearted. A board meeting at my home church was coming up so I asked my parents to see if my church would donate to the cause. The afternoon after the board meeting I talk to my mother. She sounds excited and proceeds to tell me....My parents told the board about Mexico and how much I need which is $500. Certainly a good price but it's still a lot when you're like me and have no money. As they are speaking a church member named Tom hands my mother $25. A lady pulls out her check book and writes a check for $25. Another does the same for $20. My pastor says he will give $100. My grandma says she will give $150. !!!!! So, I now have $320 toward my $500 in just one afternoon board meeting! If no one else gives, I am sure I can muster the rest if need be......PRAISE THE LORD! That was a sign to me. I need to go to Mexico. God wants me to go. He will empower me. I am so excited! Why this summer? Why in the middle of the summer? I don't know. But it's fine. I am so touched by the faith that the members of my churck back home have in me. They were willing to give from their pockets instead of having the church as a institution pay. That is so encouraging and sweet of them. They have faith in me and God's abilities using me. That is such a complement and so affirming for me.

I just went and paid my commitment fee this morning.

I am So excited! I'm sure I won't be quite as excited just beforing stepping up the first day. But, yet, I think I will be. Knowing that I am in God's plan. And He is the one presenting, not me.

Submission. I think that is one of the lessons for this year.

So now, the black hole of my life after graduation is delayed till after July 26th. What shall be next?



:-D
(Mexican turtle)

(images:http://www.essex.ac.uk/armedcon/images/country/headings/flags/mexico_flag_large.bmp, http://www.hurricanedivers.com/hd03066.jpg)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

You Talking to me?


I am taking a class called Christian Philosophy and World Views. For the first half of the semester we studied different philosophers from history. People like Heraclitus, Protagoras, Hume, Marx etc. It's all been very interesting to see how these different views are reflected in contemporary culture. This second half of the semester are looking at specific issues. Tuesday we addressed the issue of authority.

The concept of authority has changed dramatically throughout time. Think about simply from
New Testament times until now. In NT times slavery and servant hood were cultural norms. Authority in the church was not questioned in the same way today. Society was under totalitarian rule.

Today in western cultural with democracy the rule, authority is looked upon much differently. Self is the determinant and standard of authority. Be true to yourself. Be yourself. Religious authority is a whole other ballpark. It seems to me that Christians will accept that Christ/Scripture is the authority, however, forbid that anyone should tell them what that means. We want to interpret It ourselves.

Authority denotes submission. If you are under authority, you are submitted to that authoritative entity. If you were a slave or servant and your master said "go do this", there was no thought, no questioning, you immediately went and did that. How different society is today, isn't it? It seems that we pride ourselves in being defiant.

Matthew 8 records the story of the Centurion's faith....here is the condensed form...

Now when Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him.....saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented.” And Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.” The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” When Jesus heard it, He marveled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel.....Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that same hour.

The significance of the Centurion's faith was that he recognized Jesus' authority.

Jesus is our example. And if anyone submitted, Jesus did. Think about this....Jesus is God. He has the power of God. On this earth Jesus submitted to His Father and lived a life of faith. Never once did He draw upon His divine power for His own benefit. When Jesus died, that was the ultimate act of submission. Jesus is God. He Chose to lay down His life. An hour after He died, He could have resurrected Himself. However, He waited in the tomb for the Father to call Him forth.

When the voice of the mighty angel was heard at Christ's tomb, saying, Thy Father calls Thee, the Saviour came forth from the grave by the life that was in Himself. Now was proved the truth of His words, "I lay down My life, that I might take it again. . . . I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again." ~ Desire of Ages

Do you realize the implications of that statement? Jesus was not killed. He laid down His life. He gave it up to the authority of His Father's will. He made Himself, Who was equal with God, to be below God the Father. He gave up His authority and gave up life itself.

Philippians 2: 5-8, "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

Jesus - GOD, CREATOR, OMNISCIENT, OMNIPOTENT, etc- gave up His status, omnipresence...everything! He did not live for Himself. He submitted Himself to the authority of the Father and was obedient to His wishes.....to die. To save you. And me. Talk about humility.

Who is your authority today? Who are you really living for?

(images: http://www.nailscars.com/storage/i%27m-humble.png, http://www.picturesofjesus4you.com/images/in_humility_dewey_l.jpg, http://www.centurionwebdesigns.com/Centurion2.gif, http://www.aspiritualguide.net/0871_Jesus_resurrection_christian_clipart.jpg )

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hidden Valleys


In a hidden valley just over the hill
A young shepherd boy surrenders his will
As he lifts his voice in praise to his King
Only the lambs will hear and follow as he sings

In a hidden valley a faithful one leads
No one looking on, he cares for their needs
For he knows the One who tries the heart
So he is steadfast and content to do his part

Chorus:
Hidden valleys produce a life song
Hidden valleys will make a heart strong
Desperation can cause you to sing
Hidden valleys turn shepherds to kings

In a hidden valley a leader is born
He has faced the fierce and weathered the storm
So with humble heart and love for his God
He becomes royalty with just a staff and rod

That's a song from Steve Green that I hadn't heard in a really long time. It made me think of my own literal valleys. I grew up in a valley for 18 years of my life. There were hills all around me: a rural small-town country area of New York. I've been here at college in the infamous "happy valley" of Southern for the past several years.

David grew up in his hidden valley. He communed with God in the simplicity of pasture life. He fought his battles and protected his sheep. That simplistic life is what prepared him for the challenges of life outside his valley. The lessons he learned were essential and designed by God for his training and preparation.

I consider being raised in a Christian, Adventist home the most tremendous blessing in my life. I can never thank God enough. Not having to deal with the junk so many people my age have gone through....I can never be more grateful. I have this heritage which I absolutely love. Always going to small Christian schools has also been one of the most valuable blessings in my life. I have met and been blessed by so many wonderful dedicated Christian teachers and folks every year of my schooling life. Combined with my beautiful literal valleys, these protected social valleys have guided me in such a powerful way through these years of my life.

But we can't stay in these valleys. David was called from his peaceful pastoral life to a future he could never have imagined. Many of the prophets, the disciples, and Jesus Himself were all called out of their peaceful valleys to a life of service to God. We are certainly not all called to be Paul, Peter or Moses. But we are all called to step from our comfort zones and be soldiers for Christ.

This has already shaped to be a fascinating year of my schooling life- potentially the last ever. Schooling is a very comfortable valley and leaving it forever is an exciting and daunting thought. I am confident however, that these years of education and guidance, through God's Spirit, have prepared me for whatever He has before me.

Whether you're in the valley of indecision, sorrow, light, joy, frustration, trial, complacency, or wherever you find yourself, may the peace of Christ fill your hearts.



Sunday, October 5, 2008

Proverbs 16:15

“In the light of a king's face is life, and his favor is like a cloud with the spring rain.”

This is such a beautiful verse. I think of Jesus, the King of Kings. I want His face to be lighted up when He thinks of me. I want His favor to be upon me, rejuvenating my soul with the sweetness of the Holy Spirit; like the spring rain refreshes the earth and brings forth vibrant growth and new life. What a beautiful thought that is!

(images: http://babyboomcandles.com/images/Fragrance/springrainlg.jpg)