We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. ~ Marianne Williamson
A dear friend has been attempting major surgery of the heart on me without benefit of anesthetic ~ as only genuine friends do ~ & I am feeling a little battered to say the least. My friend has had some wise words to say & after sober reflection I am going to implement the sage advice I did understand & share what I can here. As my friend pointed out, lacking a church body, the blogosphere is my church & the body of Christ to me & therefore it is here I should be asking for prayer ~ so you know before we begin. Now is the time to run if you are so inclined. Secondly I am going to share because the chances are extraordinarily good that I am not the only one in a similar predicament & while I may never know who those other someones are, by sharing I hope they will not feel so alone & isolated.
I was, as some of you know, raised Anglican, low, not high. For my American friends I think that equates to Episcopalian. High or low it is a liturgical church. I do not have issues with the liturgy. I did have serious issues with a lack of intellectual integrity & mental sinewyness within the church as a teenager & was so disgusted with the trite & shallow answers handed out to me to shut me up I left the church in disgust & it was many years before I ventured back. Herein lies part of the core problem. Like C.S. Lewis I initially agreed to the principles of Christian dogma because I was convinced intellectually & while Lewis claims to have been dragged kicking & screaming a protest into the kingdom, I figure I was close on his heels.
Intellectual belief is one thing & once convinced I am rather difficult to shift but of course the Christian life is more than intellectual belief ~ or it should be. However the church is a little slow to capitalise on this & so, like many others before me, I languished on the fringes of the Christian life, convicted but unable to enter into the abundant life scripture speaks of. I happily warmed my pew in a variety of different churches over the years, bought a plethora of different books on different aspects of Christian life & acquired an extraordinary amount of intellectual & completely random knowledge about Christianity but my practise of what I believed was haphazard to say the least & ho~humish in the extreme. Not that I wasn't trying; I just wasn't getting anywhere fast.
And then something happened. One of those God moments when God looked down at the mess & the muddle, shook His head in disbelief & stretched out His hand. Dearest was, at the time, Chairman of the island church & thus responsible for filling the pulpit on Sundays. Twenty~four hours before our Christmas service our designated speaker went down with a nasty & virulent wog. Trust me; it was panic stations in our house.
Dearest is a highly intelligent man, a prophet & an intercessory prayer warrior but he is also dyslexic & so completely abstract when he expounds on his ideas very few people indeed manage to stay with him. After 40 years I just tell him bluntly he's making no sense at all but that's not something a well trained congregation is going to do. We looked at each other. We knew it was either him or I that was going to speak & we both knew it wasn't going to be him.
I was not madly impressed, not because I was worried I couldn't do it. Au contraire. Nope, it meant I was rustled out of my warm little pew in the back row where I'd been happily day~dreaming through services for years & actually required to do some Christian exercise. Exercise is so not my thing! However I majored in literature; I minored in drama. I can write an essay standing on my head & present it with barely knocking knees. It merely required some research & research is the delight of my heart. It was, in my mind a one~off to cater for an emergency situation. Unfortunately for me God had other ideas on the matter.
While I bellow like a branded steer racing madly round the coral looking for an escape route God has been patiently trying to develop a gift in me. For whatever reasons I have been suffering a particular sort of spiritual blindness & have so backed myself into a dark corner the only kind thing to do would be to shoot me & put me out of my misery. As that does not seem to be a viable option I humbly request prayer that whatever is blocking forward movement would be removed, that the scales will fall from my eyes & that the Lord & I can move forward in this dialogue to the resolution He wishes.
Secondly, as I mentioned in my previous post, our entire household has been suffering a minor but constant illness: coughs & sniffles, scratchy throats, headaches & funny tummies. There is something going round, or several somethings, & with so many people in the house we do tend to keep anything we get for rather longer than most. On top of this we have a great many other things on our plate: Liddy is now counting down the weeks & that child really needs to apply for her passport! Star has concerts; Liddy speaking engagements. For the next 6~8 weeks I'm just not going to be here very much & I'm already suffering with nerves because at least one of those concerts means driving to the other side of Brisbane in peak hour traffic to where my wonderful but dipsy Star sent me the wrong way down a one way bus lane!!! So we have shut down our Sunday home gathering.
I really dislike being without a body of believers. For one thing it is unscriptual. For another I know it weakens me. I ask if those of you who feel so called would pray with us for direction, for Clearness, & for leading as to where the Lord would have us be at this present time & the ways in which we can best serve Him. We have two months before we will even be able to begin to think about committing to anything. I know what I would do ~ but that does not take into consideration anyone else in this house & my choice would suit no~one else so is not a long term solution.
To all my wonderful sisters in Christ, thank you in advance for bearing our burdens with us as scripture admonishes us, for your love & concern & your prays. Muchos gratias.