Sunday, January 30, 2011


I am facilitating Sunday school class study on Max Lucado's 'Out Live Your Life'.

I will admit to feeling perhaps a bit lost in facilitating this study. It's about finding ways to make a difference in the world. How can we do something for it big or small... but just do something that leaves a God sized mark on the world.

There are incredible videos involved and really great study questions.

I think part of the issue I have is that I get frustrated with the blank stares that I get from the class when I ask them what they are passionate about.

The last 2 videos included information about people that have worked to try to make a difference in Haiti since the earthquake. After the video today which featured a young couple who had moved there literally a week before the earthquake and now felt that they are exactly where they need to be... I turned to the class and said "Ok who wants to go to Haiti now?!" .. I got some blank stares and nervous chuckles.

How come?

Is it because the class isn't moved by what they are seeing? No, it's a great group of loving God loving people.

I moved along with the questions and as we discussed a few things we kind of began seeing where some people could perhaps make their mark. There were guys who felt like they could maybe do yard work for the people in our church that cannot get out of their houses. We have a teacher that loves teaching and sharing that gift with others.

The question that was placed on the table though was this one "There is SO much need. How do I know where to start?"

Good question.

I think that's where we all get tripped up huh? I know I do. If I get involved in one thing, then will it lead to more? Will I be called to live outside of what is my comfort zone? Will I be called to a place like Haiti or Ethiopia or Uganda or back woods North Carolina or Inner City Philadelphia? Will God ask me to actually speak to the homeless or give up something that I feel like I need?

Valid questions I think.

I have shared before that as a baby Christian I was a bit freaked out at the idea that God might call me to be a missionary in Africa. It was the farthest, scariest place I could think of... I mean I grew up to the images of the millions dying of starvation in the 80's... I cried every time I heard "We Are The World" ... Man did I pray that God wouldn't send me there.

Now... Oh how I pray that God would send me there. :)

So what is the thing that makes us uncomfortable enough in our comfortableness to want to do something about it? (did you follow that?) :)

What makes us mad enough to want to change it... or sad enough...or SO FULL of love for something that we can no longer sit on our happy place but have to go DO something?

I don't know the answer for you... and I am mostly speaking to the choir for those that read this blog. :)

But maybe you can help me come up with some ideas...some thoughts that I might share with the class?

What I think changed it for me was asking God to break my heart for what breaks His... to show me where He was working and placing me there. The place that would move me to action. I cannot look at the people in Ethiopia and not see His love. I cannot look at the my children and not see His glory. I cannot think of the people in the Leper Colony as anything other than the people that Jesus wanted to hang out with... so I wanna hang out with them too. These are the people that Christ sought out. They ARE Christ if you wanna get down to it... we may believe that we are being Christ by sharing ourselves... but in reality those that we serve...are Him. He said whatever you do to the least of these you do to me.

It's not something that I can ignore...I don't want to any more. :) I want to hurt for them, I want to love them, I want to live with them, I want to share their joys and pains.

But... how do you get others to feel your passion? Or better yet...feel God's passion? Not out of guilt, but out of an overflowing of His love for us. His boundless love for us... So much love that you can't just sit... you have to do... no matter whether it's feeding people in a soup kitchen, loving a window or single mom, adopting a child, fostering teens, going on a mission team, moving to another country, sharing your sandwich with the guy on the corner with the homeless sign...

What are you passionate about?


Mare said...

HIV/AIDS OVCs, and the deep, deep heart of God for them. I was just talking with my mom today... they aren't someone else's children and responsibility, whom I have the option of changing my life to love and reach out to. I am compelled by the love of Christ... they are my children... there is no option not to.

After ten+ years of moving slowly this direction, and after many years of wait-not-yet in finding out how this passion will play out in real life (instead of in my heart and head)... After years of doing little bits from far away, in the way of advocacy, supplies, prayer, awareness... it's finally time to really move (Phil 4:10). We start by bringing them into our home... but I do believe that is really just the very start.

"Are These Kids All Yours?" said...

There are many!!!! Orphans, widows- those single moms or the ladies that want to keep their children but have no support, the hurting after abortion happens, abortion in general, crisis pregnancy centers, the young women pregnant and a lone, those with no food, those with no hope of God in their passions go on for hours.

I think we get others to feel our passion when they see us act out our passion. When we talk about it! When they see it in our hearts and lives. Our children have seen it. They feel it. Those who really know us- see it.

Our journey following Christ said...

Orphans, the outcast, loving the ones others don't want to look at.

My mom reminded me of an excellent truth yesterday. One I have NEVER heard preached in all of my 45 years in church.

It is that we are to consider ourselves slaves of Christ, not even on the level of a servant but a slave. Servants have rights and slaves do not. They are owned totally and completely, as we should be. If we thought this way, really believed this, Christianity would not be "all about me" but "ALL about Christ."

I think way too American churches are too "me" centered. That's part of the reason people don't answer when you ask that question. The truth is that if they told you what they were really passionate about, they'd be ashamed.

I used to be that person.


Jackie said...

I echo every word of Laura's post above. Sadly to say, the American church is too "me' centered and what God can do for me, me, me. It's time to be the vessels He created us to be and allow His passion for all those who are oppressed and downtrodden to flow freely from His heart through our hearts and hands to truly be His servants in the world.

Great post....thanks for sharing!


Mandi said...

What changed it all for me, from "Hearing" to "doing" was EXACTLY what you said....when my husband and I prayed from sincere hearts for God to break our hearts for what breaks His. It's been 1.5 years since then. We enthusiastically said yes to adoption right then, but He had a different winding path in store. We made that mission trip to Uganda this past summer (God provided every dime out of nothing)BOTH of us....and now my heart rejoices that we are in the midst of our homestudy to adopt 2 preschoolers from Uganda. God can change all our thinking, our desires, if we surrender it ALL. Love this post. Encouragement to me!