Consider.Love.

“Need-love cries to God from our poverty; Gift-love longs to serve, or even to suffer for, God; Appreciative love says: ‘We give thanks to thee for thy great glory.’  Need-love says of a woman ‘I cannot live without her’; Gift-love longs to give her happiness, comfort, protection – if possible, wealth; Appreciative love gazes and hold its breath and is silent, rejoices that such a wonder should exist even if not for him, will not be wholly dejected by losing her, would rather have it so than never to have seen her at all.

…In actual life, thank God, the three elements of love mix and succeed one another, moment by moment.  Perhaps none of them except Need-love ever exists alone, in ‘chemical’ purity, for more than a few seconds.  And perhaps that is because nothing about us except our neediness is, in this life, permanent.”

~ C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves

Something to ponder…

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Celebration

C.S. Lewis’ The Four Loves in hand.  The sweet scent of gardenia’s taking in the sun as they sit on my table.  And the steam of a warm cup of coffee topped with whip cream right next to me.  This is my morning.

And as I read, I hear the soft sound of voices below my balcony.  The voices begin to grow in volume and soon it sounds as though a crowd is forming, each person wanting to add their part to the orchestra of voices that is broken up quite often with unanimous laughter.

I place my book down to listen more, possibly to understand what is going on.  And then there are cheers.  I stand at the edge of my balcony, lean over the railing, and stretch out on my tip toes just to try to catch a glimpse of the excitement that has filled this group of family and friends.  I see nothing, but the celebration is still there.

I sit back down, smiling at the joy that is around me and thinking about all there is to celebrate in life, even in this very day, this very moment.  And I’m filled with thanks.  Thankful to have been a part of their celebration.  Thankful for life and love.  Thankful for this very moment.

I take a deep breath, inhaling the scent of gardenia’s, pick up my book, and continue to be thankful…


Response to Responsibility

What is your response to responsibility?

Some of us ask for it, while some of us run from it.  Some of us are trustworthy with it, while some of us are foolish with it.  Some of us don’t even understand it at all.

It comes in many forms, from taking responsibility for your own actions to being given the responsibility of taking care of something important, such as a task, a vision, or even a life.

And as I sit here, taking time to consider the responsibilities that I have been given, I realize that I have a choice.  I can sit back just giving a little here and there, making excuses, or giving up when things get challenging or overwhelming.  Or I can see the responsibilities in front of me, give my best, knowing that I have been given such wonderful responsibility for a reason, and that what ever I’m lacking in, HE lacks in nothing.

So I excitedly move forward in responsibility.  I take it on knowing I am right where I need to be.  And I enjoy exactly where I am.

During the past few weeks, after getting adjusted to the culture once again, I’ve spent time embracing the responsibility at hand.

I’ve been in contact with a couple missionaries we are preparing to send out.  I appreciate the role I have been given, to check in on their progress, to assist them where we can, and to just continue to cover them in support and encouragement.  It is amazing the good that is taking place around the world!

I’ve also been brainstorming some possible children and youth programs that will assist in getting them off the streets during their idle time.  But to also give them leadership and responsibility as well.  As I’ve been brainstorming with a fellow staff, I’ve been looking for funding, such as grants, that would help support such programs and projects that G42 Leadership Academy will be a part of.  We aren’t located in Spain, just to have our own “little America”, but we are here to be a part of the community in which we live and empower others.

Along with that, I introduce to you Heritage.Now.  This is the name I’ve been using as I explain my vision out here.  As I have a heart for discipling current and future missionaries, I too have a heart for street children.  The name, Heritage. Now, represents the appreciation of where they come from and who they are, their culture, their individual identities.  It represents the hope in being a part of a family, the greatness that exists in them as they too are a part of the body of Christ.  And it represents the responsibility they have to make the choices now, to live now, in that very hope of who they are and the future at hand.

In order to work more with street children in this area, to learn, and to serve, I’m looking into connecting with organizations in the area.  I hope that I may volunteer with them as I develop the way I’m called to serve street children.

There is a lot taking place here.  It is exciting.  It is possible.  It is happening.

And here I sit on my balcony, feeling the weight of it, but knowing that it is my heart and that God is definitely using me, I can’t help but be so very thankful that I am a part of it.

I embrace these responsibilities and know there is more…