Foot washing

Peter persisted, “You’re not going to wash my feet—ever!”

Jesus said, “If I don’t wash you, you can’t be part of what I’m doing.”

–John 13:8

Watching the Gospel of John today in preparation for the men’s small group, I heard this exchange. And welled up in tears.

Do I let Jesus wash my feet? Minister to me?

Or am I too busy “serving Him”?

Jesus is alive!

Today when I read the title of Anna’s bible reading, “Jesus is alive!”, Caleb said, “No he’s not.”

Me: Yes he is.

C: No he’s not.

Me: What do you mean?

C: D-a-a-d, Jesus isn’t alive. Jesus died and hasn’t come back yet. He is coming back. But he might not be back for a thousand years.

Me: So does that mean Gram and Gramp are dead?

C: Huh?

Me: Well, Gram and Gramp went to Mississippi and haven’t come back yet. Does that mean they’re dead?

C: D-a-a-d

The ever practical Anna: Why don’t we call them?

We did. Thankfully, Gram and Gramp are still alive. 🙂

“That must be the Vineyard!”

We’re always looking for new (and even quirky) ways to show our community God’s love in practical ways.

Sam’s Club sells a box of 28 packets of this microwave popcorn for about $6.40. So a couple weeks ago I bought 10 boxes! And this week, I got my outreach card order from OvernightPrints.com. So last night, I attached the cards to 140 packets (5 boxes).

Now a local party store has a box to give away, the library has a box to give away, and the local homeless shelter has a couple boxes.

At the shelter, I asked if the popcorn would be a blessing. They immediately said “Yes!” As I passed it to them, I explained that we believe lots of people have heard of God’s love but very few have actually seen it in practical ways.

Before I could even finish that brief explanation, a woman I’d never seen before blurted out, “You must be the Vineyard!”

Wow. I was about 6 inches off the ground when I walked out.

Everybody’s going to have a rep. I’m glad serving people in practical ways is ours!!

Magic Eraser Prayers

Magic EraserThis morning I found myself praying defensive prayers. “God protect us.” “God please war on our behalf.” Stuff like that.

Good stuff. Don’t get me wrong. God needs to be fighting our battles if anything is going to happen.

But defensive-only prayers remind me of the holiness I see of the religious in Jesus’ time. Their holiness was a fragile commodity, one easily broken.

They couldn’t touch certain people or eat certain food or do certain things. If they did, the “holiness” would be shattered and they’d have to start over.

In this world-view, evil seems stronger. It easily taints the holy ones of God. It is so strong, it could passively make you unclean. You get slimed by going into the “wrong” places or being around the “wrong” people.

Defensive only lifestyle leads too building bigger walls for us to hide behind. “Christian” music. “Christian” books. “Christian” movies. It doesn’t matter whether they’re of inferior quality. At least they’re “safe.”

Not so with Jesus.

Jesus hung out with all the wrong people in many of the wrong places. Jesus talked to prostitutes, touched lepers, he even touched the dead!

Rather than shattering his holiness, he made them whole. His Life was so robust, it imparted Life to others.

He was like a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. No stain was too strong for him. He came in and left people and places cleaner than he’d found them.

That’s how I want to be. If I truly believe He’s living me, transforming me into His image, than I too am filled with this infectious Life.

So, in addition to defensive prayers, I’m committing to pray Magic Eraser prayers too.