Tag Archives: good

Being Human

grace abounds

 

“And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.”  So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”  He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.    -John 1:19-23

This was the verse for today in the on-line Bible study I’m doing with IF:Equip.  Check it out and join in, you will be blessed.

Every time I’ve read this passage before it has been about John preparing the way for Jesus.  John wasn’t the point of the story to me.  Jesus was.  And of course, He still is but today for some reason, I was really feeling John.

They kept asking him, WHO ARE YOU?

It made me think of how we go around and ask people that all the time.  Maybe not out loud so blatantly but we try to figure out who people are so we can put them in a box.  We ask others about them, we gather information based on outward signs, we judge, we condemn, we categorize.  We want to know WHO ARE YOU?   But mostly, we want to glean a little more information about who we are by deciding definitively who “they” are.

I was listening to the interview with Kristin Armstrong from the IF:Gathering and I was so moved and inspired by her.  She was talking about her ex-husband (she calls him her “wasband”), Lance Armstrong.  She said that people tried to make him a hero and then they tried to make him a villain.  She explained that neither of those things are true.  He’s just a broken human being like you and me.

Amen.

Grace abounds.

I could go on an on about what a beautiful, graceful, forgiving, inspiring soul I found her to be.  But that would be putting her up on a pedestal.  That would be making her a hero.  I know she wouldn’t want that.  Her grace comes from her humility and her gratitude to God for His faithfulness.  She’s just pointing the way to Him.

We want to make people the hero or the villain because it makes us feel better.  But the truth is no one person is only one thing.  We can’t define people by one moment in time or one bad decision or even years of making bad decisions.  We are all works in progress.  Broken and in need of grace.

I’m going to work on not being attached to definitions of people, to not needing to place people in a box or on a pedestal.  To no longer dismissing or idolizing mere human beings.

Turns out we are all the same anyway.  Muddling through this world trying our best to show up and laugh and love people. It’s interesting how even when we make poor choices and get ourselves in some tough situations, God works with that, loving us through it and showing us the way.  He’s so good.

Grace abounds.

©2014 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big YES™  All Rights Reserved

Set That Woman Free!

 

Amen?

What’s your favorite line?

MIne’s this:  You are Never too much and always enough.

I especially loved the “never too much” part.  Sometimes I feel like too much.  Too loud, too passionate about ideas, too excited. I was told to “relax” a lot when I was younger.  That’s really mean actually.  I hate the word “relax”.  It’s hostile.  When I hear it, I hear this…”Calm down, shut up, you are too loud and too excited and it’s not the way a girl should act.  You are too much!”

When I talk about the “too much” thing I get a little riled up.  When people would tell me to calm down or relax I remember feeling like I just wanted to get LOUDER.  I wanted to be MORE.  I wanted to SHOW THEM.  So I would get louder.  And then I’d really feel like too much.

We learn the rules of the game as women and sometimes those rules tell us to not be ourselves.   The little voice warns us about being offensive or not ladylike or not being liked or being judged or needing to shrink to fit in.  We play nice, we don’t make waves, we compromise ourselves because we think we have to.  Because we forget.

We forget who we are and we forget whose we are.

We are God’s beloved children and everything He makes is good.

I’m good.

You’re good.

It’s all good.

©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big YES™  All Rights Reserved                                                              *video from the Anima series on YouTube

 

 

It’s Good To Be Friends

 

I picked up my son from Religious Education class (that sounds really formal but here are the other choices…CCD, YC, Sunday school (but not on a Sunday), RE, Catechism…you get the point…no one knows what we are even talking about anymore!)

He gets in the car and hands me this:

friends with god new format

The question is “What is the most important thing you have learned about prayer in your life so far?”  So I asked him what his answer is (we may need to work on sentence structure and punctuation) and he said, “It (prayer) is good to do to be friends with God.”

AMEN!!

FREAKIN’ AMEN PEOPLE!!

It was about 7:30 pm when this happened and all I could think was that I better get to bed quick on this MOUNTAINTOP MOMENT OF MOTHERHOOD so we can call the day a major success!  Let’s not tempt fate…in fact, I came home and announced I was going to bed, rushing past my other two children who let’s be honest, at this point seemed like heathens compared to my son…no sense in risking a major turn around…who knows, there could be fighting, doubting, shouting, sassing, demanding…we have tomorrow for that.  This night was about my little guy and his KNOWING that prayer is the pathway to friendship with God.

I shouldn’t be surprised.  Kids know it.  Kids feel Him everywhere.  Kids sense that  friendship with God is there for the taking…freely offered…open hands…open hearts…stunning love in its purest form. They get it.

When is it exactly that we stop “getting this” as adults?

We make it so difficult.

I read this today and wept.

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life.  I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me – watch how I do it.  Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.  I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.  Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”                      Matthew 11:28 (The Message)

That’s the invitation.  He offers Freedom. Rest. Grace. Friendship.

What do you say?  Are you in?

It’s good to be friends with God.

©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved