Saturday, September 04, 2010

Teachers Beware

The title of this post doesn't refer to the dangers of teaching children. No, I am refering to the dangers when teaching the Bible. James 3 says, "Let not many of you become teachers, my brothers, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment". Basically, live up to what you preach. Thank God we preach grace and mercy, not our own perfection.
Still, I am reminded of this warning as I face a night of disappointment. Yep. Today was just one of those days where the reality of singleness hit harder than usual. I was struggling through this, praying that God would meet me in this moment. That's when I got home and read an email from a guy asking if I would be interested in setting up his friend with mine. My heart sunk. His friend was one of those guys that you meet and are just so blown away by their love for the Lord. And you hope somewhere in your heart that you get a guy like that someday. It's not that I was so madly in love with this guy, but it was just a reminder that this one isn't for me. Just like all the rest. Not for me. Or so it feels.
It's not a coincidence that I am feeling this way tonight. In about 16 hours I am going to stand before some women and tell them that their theology affects their lives. I am going to tell them that they have to cling to God and His promises because life hits us hard sometimes. I am going to tell them that dealing with things like discontentment, shame, and disappointment are all theological issues. So as I sat at my desk, reading the email, watching some misplaced hopes wash down the drain, I cried out to the Lord. I begged Him to give me faith that He truly is working things out in my life. My future may or may not involve a husband. My hope is not in some perceived ideal of domestic bliss. My hope is in Him and Him alone. I don't write these things easily. They bring tears to my eyes. "Have faith" is not an easy answer. In fact, in some ways it is much harder than doing the dirty work. It is more of a daily struggle to cling to this reality- the reality that God is faithful and good and in control.
So come tomorrow, when I stand before the women in my church and proclaim to them the Lord's faithfulness, I come not as a professional or a perfect example. I come as one who spent a night clinging to the hope that is found in the arms of a sweet savior.

Friday, September 03, 2010

let's go!

So a quick piece of good news... (btw- sorry for the ridiculously long posts recently. It's like binging and purging. I don't write for a week and then I get it all out in a long post!)
My boss decided to give us an extra day off for the upcoming Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving). So that gives us a total 6 days off (including the weekend) so I'm gonna head on down to Thailand for a little vacation! Yep. Random you think? Well, out of every country in Asia, Thailand is one of the only ones I really want to see. I didn't have a huge desire to see Japan or China, but LOVED spending that time with my parents. So now, given the chance to do anything for those 6 days, Im heading down to southeast Asia. My brother is in Singapore and I'm hoping he can join me in Thailand for a few days (I think it's gonna happen!). Somehow this turned into the summer with random trips around Asia with various family members. Now I just need a trip with my sister.

So.. stay tuned... Sept 18-24 is gonna be heart of lippy, Thai-style!

A quick hello...

Hi friends,
Thanks for coming back again and again even when I take a week to post anything. The previous post was quite dramatic and I have good news, things have calmed down a bit since then. No more emotional breakdown at work (at least I'm not the one having them!)
I've made it to Friday night and I actually found myself breathing a prayer of relief as I walked into my apartment after a long day at work. Thank you Lord for sustaining me this week.
I spend most of my time thinking that I am the one who sustains me. I think that I have so much energy and I can spend it on certain things. But this week was a testimony of the foolishness of such thoughts. I couldn't have gone through this week were not I sustained every moment by God's grace. This week was a fairly normal week at work- a hectic frenzy of joy and frustration all mixed in with whining and laughing.
But in addition to my normal teaching schedule, I have been blessed beyond measure to teach a 6 week course on biblical theology for women. Of course, this is at my church, not SEA. But the excitement in me that has arisen in sharing with my sisters the amazing tools I learned in seminary has actually brought me to tears. This is what I live for! So I began to work on the course (a wonderful mix of Carolyn Custis James, Graeme Goldsworthy, and Doug Green). It has given me a wonderful excuse to listen to some lectures by John Loftness and read Biblical Theology in the Life of the Church (thanks Howard!)
I knew that I was gonna get attacked this week. Have you ever noticed any time you are doing something for God how suddenly life turns sour. Things just go wrong and fall apart? WEll, I was expecting it and asked for prayer, and I felt the protection of God around me this week. I was able to have grace for people who hurt me when everything in me wanted to just sit in anger. I was able to be patient with kids that would normally evoke impatience in me. I was able to multi-task even more than normal this week. I felt the waves crashing around me and I didn't drown. All of that was God's grace on me. And I knew it. I watched before my eyes as the Lord sustained me.
One of the ways I felt the attacks this week was in nightmares. Literally in one of them satan was trying to kill me. I was filled with fear and trying to escape. He was crushing me at one point and in my dream it was making me need to throw up. I woke up gagging, grateful that there wasn't any real vomit to deal with. I woke up in the middle of the night a lot this week. Most of the nights I laid in bed trying to fall back asleep, and unable to for hours. It was so discouraging, but I also knew whose name to call upon in my fear. And I knew that it was Him sustaining me.
So tonight, Friday night, I am staying in and listening to some awesome lectures on Biblical Theology while I bake some cookies by candlelight. I won't call it a date with Jesus, but it's about as close as you get.