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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My words feel inadequate to describe.

via Crosspoint Community Church's D-Now site
Guys, this weekend was incredible.  I told you last Monday about the exhaustion work was giving me.  I told you I was going to be helping with a D-Now group, (here's wikipedia's sufficient definition) and I was really worried that I wouldn't be able to give them the love and attention they would need because I would be too tired or crabby.

I got off work Friday at 1, headed home after some errands and relaxed for a few moments until I learned that I had less than an hour to be at the leaders' meeting!  I had a mini panic moment and burst into engergy.  I had to shower, pack, and get something like a lunch  before I had to leave to make it in time for the meeting!  Rushing and stress, two friends I wish I wasn't so close with, instantly showed up and boggled my mind as I tried to get things done.

This wasn't what I'd had in mind for preparing my mind and heart for the weekend that was going to come.


I was really thankful that I'd become more comfortable with my hair being messy and especially thankful that I felt like I didn't need much makeup after my shower.  I was cutting corners everywhere I could to make sure I'd get to the church as close to 4 as possible.  I had to stop and fill up my car ($60.something), and I made it to the church around 4:15.  I expected to walk in on the group of leaders as they were discussing some deep things we'd be working with, but I was surprised to see that I was the second leader to arrive.  The others didn't show up until a half hour later.  God gave me that half hour to calm down, to read over some of the material for the weekend, and to connect with my partner, Betty, who I'd only met once or twice before.

Betty's one of those girls who makes you almost jealous of her relationship with the Lord.  She talks about Him and His goodness all the time, and it's so sweet.  Intimidation threatened to make me hard to her joy, but it had no hold on me.  (Oh, thank the Lord!)  I tracked with her the whole weekend, and I let her teach me and encourage me.

Our first order of business was to decide which group of high school girls we were going to work with for the weekend.  One group was the upper classmen and the other was the freshmen.  Betty and I had instant attractions to the group we wanted, but we knew that God's will was more important that ours, so we took time to think and to search and to pray.  As I looked at the list of names, I knew that I could work with either one, but I felt much more drawn to the younger girls.  After our silence, I turned to Betty and carefully told her this.  She smiled really big and told me that she had been feeling drawn to the older girls!  We had wanted to be so gentle to each other and to the Lord's leading, we were almost scared to voice our own opinions and our thoughts on God's leading because we didn't want to take from the other what God might have been telling her, but, heyo!  God's leading is perfect!  He knew exactly what each of us were thinking, and He knew exactly which group each of us should be with!  Betty and I rejoiced in His leading and wisdom.  This was confirmation to us that this was God's weekend.  Betty and I had come from busy weeks and crazy schedules and we hadn't prepared as much as we'd wanted to, but God had been doing the preparing for us even before we thought to pray for His help!

It then that I knew.  It was gonna be a good weekend.

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I can't tell you everything, but I can tell you that God worked His wonders this weekend. He used His magnificent power in wonderful ways that gripped the hearts of my girls.  I am so proud of them for laying down their questions before Him and letting His enter their lives.  He honored their surrender and totally showed up!  He became real to a couple of them for the first times in their lives!  GAH!  That's So Awesome!!!

He came into our group.

He led me to be vulnerable in front of these girls, and he used the stories of my relationship with Him to speak to them.  It blows my mind to know that the struggles I've had in my life have prepared me so well to love them, and I am so glad that I can say that I am thankful for each of the hard things I told them I wrestled with because it's let me relate to them better and to help them.  Because I had those awful experiences, I was able to speak to the struggling ones on deeper levels.  I was able to share Scripture with them that helped me through those times.  I know what they're going through.  Also, I think that hearing me talk about not being perfect, about struggling with sad, hurtful things, I think it helped the girls relate to me better.  I think it helped them see me more as one of them, as someone they can trust.

Because of this, I wouldn't trade those awful times for anything.  They let me into their hearts and shared the struggles they were wrestling with, and they let me speak truth into their lives.  All because God allowed me to go through that pain.  He has since delivered me from that pain and has given me beautiful endings to my stories, and I know that He will give these girls beautiful endings, too.  He is so good.

I am in awe of Him.  His love and His goodness became real not only to my seven 9th grade girls this weekend, but to me.  He let me see in so many ways how He is in control and that His control can be trusted.  He is not a God to be feared, He is a God to be enjoyed.  He is in control because He can do this the best way.  He knows all, and He loves all.  His desire is not to hurt, but to heal.  He may let us go through the fires, and He has let me go through the fires, but He always delivers in the perfect way and at the perfect time.  He uses those struggles, He develops vulnerability, He makes beautiful.  He makes our stories beautiful.

AAHH!!  Isn't that WONderful!?

I cannot help but respond in kind to His perfect, whole love!  I was struck this weekend with how poorly I have loved Him back, but He has said to me, "Hey, don't worry about what you've done and haven't done, just show me what you've going to do now!  Love me now, worship me now!"  And I tell Him, "Ok!  I'd love to!"

And so here we are.  God and I.  His magnificence has romanced me this weekend.

I love it.

I love Him.

(Gah, I can't stop!)  And I love Him for loving these girls!  These girls who have become my friends and my sisters!  He burdened my heart for theirs, and I am so thankful that He has come in to rescue their hearts!  He brought me to them, and he gave me deep connections with them, and He didn't say, "Ok, Lindsay, you are going to love these girls and you're going to see them hurt this weekend."  He said, "Lindsay, I'm going to introduce you to seven of my favorite beauties.  You are going to fall in love with them in a very, very short time, and you are going to desire the best for them just like I do.  And guess what!  I'm going to fulfill their desires for Me this weekend!  I'm going to bless them, and you get to watch!  You'll get to watch me fully bless the girls you'll come to love and care about so deeply!  Isn't that awesome?!  Aren't I awesome!"

"Heck yes, God, bring it!  I am so on board with this and with You!  Anything You say, God, because I know you are good!  All the time, in every time!  Yesss!"

And the crowd goes wild.

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And so, my friends, let us rejoice in God's goodness together.  I hope He shows you this week how sweet He is.  And, by "sweet," I don't mean in the way you'd tell your boyfriend, "you're so sweet," but in the way that honey is sweet to the taste.  It's good and wholesome and kind of exhilarating.  I hope the Lord shows Himself sweet to your heart.

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