Sunday, August 06, 2006

Effectiveness and Confession

Yuck...tomorrow is Monday. About the only thing good about Mondays is that I get to go take a cycle class at the gym at 615a. What a great way to start the week! But, its just not the same as a weekend.
I've been thinking today about effectiveness and confession. It is hard to be effect when you are so far away (literally) from what (or whom) you are trying to effect. I remember 2 years ago when I was making the drive a few times a week to Durham to go to church and do ministry. I was plugged in everywhere, but it was tough on my calendar, my car, and my wallet - because gas prices were on the rise. Then I moved to Raleigh - a little closer than WF - but still a 20 minute drive. What that meant for me was still more driving, because I figured since I didn't have as far to go I could go more often - yes I know that is flawed thinking. Now, that I live in Durham, especially this summer...God's been teaching me that you have to do what you are called to do, be effective through HIM in what He has gifted and called you to do, and stick to that. I don't have to do everything, but it does help, and answers questions, when you are close to the people you are trying to effect. Close for me is when I work out and shop in Chapel Hill - I do ministry at UNC. I work at DUMC, but never see any college kids, but when I'm in MadHatters or Fosters and see students - then I do ministry. When God gives me random opps to do ministry elsewhere - I jump at the chance. There is a difference between weekly ministry and one-time opps ministry. Sort of the difference in a pastor and an itinerate (sp?) preacher.
Confession...I was reading in Ps 32 this morning before heading off to church. Heard a great sermon on speaking by Pastor Bill and then right after church (I mean the second he dismissed) I said something that definitely wasn't obedient to the Word. So, I confessed that to my friend the minute we got on the phone with each other after the second service. After our lunch at Whole Foods (the one on Wade is so much better than the ones in D & CH) I told her how appreciate I was to have someone that we can confess, keep accountable, talk about our struggles, joys, successes, etc in this life of following Christ. I think non-Catholic Christians get confession all wrong. We think we have to say 18 hail marys and go talk to a priest behind a sliding wall - that isn't it. I think to Hebrews when the writer says that we have a GREAT HIGH PRIEST who is daily making intercession for us. I think of 1 John 1.9 that says if we confess He is just to forgive us. Having my friend is to me, an extension of the grace of God. Not someone who is perfect, but someone who is in the strive to be like Jesus - just like I am, and who needs grace - just as much as I do - EVERY DAY.
So, my challenge to all out there in blog-ville tonight - be effective where God has planted you for His Kingdom and for His Renown, and find an equally-yoked Christian to keep you accountable and be able to confess your sins to him/her.
Ps 32.1-5
Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity,and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah

That we may have: (v 11)
Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous,and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!

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