i moved the furniture around in my living room on wednesday night. i was sitting with the baby on the floor about an hour before we needed to leave for church when i decided to do it. i put ellie in her exersaucer, got out the vacuum and went to work.
for those of you who've ever been to my apartment, the TV is now where the red chair used to be. the couch is still essencially in the same spot only the red chair is now next to it. when landon came home from the youth activity (at a very nice time of 10 p.m., i might add...), he made the most wonderful face, pleased with my handiwork.
later he said, "you know what my favorite part about this is?"
i looked around.
"that the couch and the chair are next to each other?" (the chair is his; it was a valentine's day present the first year we were married.)
he nodded with a sweet little smile he gives when he's trying to be cute. and succeeding.
i said, "so we can hold hands!"
he nodded again.
i was thinking about my living room when it occured to me that its slightly improved appearance is a reflection of what God has been doing in my life this summer.
i'm still me. there hasn't been any completely new change. but He has certainly been doing some rearranging.
there are new, more important things pressing on my heart as the fall draws near. (though you wouldn't know it. the heat index in dallas is 107 degrees today.) i'm going to join bsf - a seven-year Bible study that my mom completed a couple years ago. i long to go deeper into the Word.
i'm going to commit to volunteering at the pregnancy center. i'll be a client consultant who basically counsels young girls who are pregnant and don't know what to do. i long to live out what Jesus commanded in the Bible, that we reach out to those who need Him desperately.
i am longing for excellence in all my endeavors. and for the kind of discipline i've never been able to acheive, but know i'm capable of with His help.
all this time i've been thinking that God has been moving me to change professions. then, when i didn't get a job, i thought, "um, hello? what the heck is Your problem?!" and while He may still bless me with a classroom of kiddos at some point, the stirring in my soul for something new, something fresh, something better has been so much bigger, something far beyond what i was able to comprehend at first.
on wednesday night, pastor dennis talked about the direction of our youth group for this coming school year. he told us that the boat is leaving the dock, and we're dropping the dead weight. he has challenged the leaders to either jump in with both feet, or get out. and he's not kidding. there is a desperation and passion in the staff -- dennis, landon, jesse and josh -- that is new to me. they are not messing around. dennis talked about how our students do not have small dreams; they have God-sized dreams. he shared with us about some kids who really, truly believe that they will end the suffering in the sudan. and another two who want to go to medical school, believe they will be blessed with the money so they won't have loans and plan to go to poor countries along with dozens of other doctors to administer free health care to people who have no access to it. oh, i was crying. these are 16-year-old kids! some even younger. he told us that these kids have the ability and the vision to, very literally, change the world. but they need us. they need us to tell them they can do it. and to help them get there. the point that touched me most was this:
"without leaders who are gutsy enough to rise to the challenge, this generation will pass quietly into the night having reflected the actions and attitudes of those who led them."
oh, Lord, i cannot tell You how much i want to be one of those leaders who makes a difference. a long time ago You placed in my heart a desire to minister to teenagers; to build them up and encourage them in the knowledge that You have more for them than they've ever imagined.
this summer You have been reminding me of that.
You've been changing the order of my priorities, my thoughts and my vision.
please don't stop.
for i have been rearranged. i refuse to go back.