Friday, January 11, 2008

Trio of sickness

For the last two weeks, Sarah, Miriam, and I have been fighting sickness. First we had a stomach bug. When I say "we," that's what I mean. This is the first time that I have ever experienced us all sick at the same time. My wife has done a great job being a nursing mom even when she feels nauseated. She has been reading some Agatha Christie books, which I believe are her way to discover new ways to get rid of her old husband. Ha.

Now we have respiratory/cold/flu bugs. Miriam is taking breathing treatments and is getting better. We have been watching way more TV than we normally do, especially for Miriam.

Reflecting on these two weeks, I think that God has taught me a lot more about taking care of self and family. I think about the times that I just toughed it out with physical sickness in college and grad school. Not only did I make it tough on my body, but also for those around me that I was contaminating with my germs. I just thought things would get better--eventually. What I did was leave little a less room for God to work. I believed a little less in the providence of God. I see now that if I lay home for two weeks sick, Kingdom work is still being done. Sure I want to get out there and touch some teen's lives. Maybe it's time learn to trust that God is already working. He is doing things that I may not have noticed while in the trenches.

Pray for us.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Buying a Car in the Hood

Last summer, a family that I know through Contact saved up $1500 to buy a reliable car. They have several children and money is tight. I even got to go to one car lot with one of the parents. At the end of the process, they bought a car from a car lot that I knew nothing of--thankfully. The first sign of a problem was that the car was actually delivered to them by tow truck. Second, they drove the car a few miles down the road, and the car started overheating. When they called the guy who sold them the vehicle, he told them to bring the car into their shop. The car was never fixed. I provided them with phone numbers for legal assistance. Before too long, the guy left town.

Today, I found out another sad point to the story. When the car was brought to the "service shop," they (the guy and his buddies) took the car to get crushed without the family's permission. The mom relayed this to me and said that they just counted their losses, moving on. My jaw dropped. How can this happen?!

Lord, may you bring your justice. May your justice roll into their neighorhood and bring what is right into this broken, crushed world.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Cell Phone Spirituality

I have finally realized that spirituality comes out in many different forms, especially among teens. How many of you have ever passed on an e-mail or text message forward that says the following: GOD TOLD ME TO TELL U THAT EVERYTHING U R GOING THRU IS ALREADY TAKEN CARE OF. IF U BELIEVE HIM SND 2 TEN PPL? We have a teen in our ministry here at Contact who sends about one spiritual text message forward a week. After being initially annoyed at some of the more "magical ones" (the ones that claim that a blessing or a phone call will happen if you send to ten people), this one struck me hard. I realized that this was her expression of a spiritual life. That text mesage came to her unannounced as a proclamation from God. Forwarding to another person is an act of love and service and comfort. Forwarding is a sign that God is up to something in this world right now. Thanks for sending that one, just don't send me those magical formula ones!

By the way, there is a book out in the Amazon Book Kingdom by the title of this post. Grace and peace.