Tag Archives: The Message

Bono and The Message. Worlds collide.

When I first found The Message version of the Bible, the whole thing came alive for me.

There are so many translations but this version, by Eugene Peterson, is my favorite.  My Bible actually has the NIV version next to the Message  so it’s the best of both worlds.  As you know, I love writing and reading and words so now I have the Amplified Bible too – just to see the different words for each passage.  We also have the ESV and the King James and a bunch of study Bibles and well, you get the point.

There is a lot of chatter out there on this topic.  I have no interest in debating with the scholars.  I just know that in reading the Message, it has felt like God was sitting with me in my living room.  It has felt like He is in my marriage and my parenting and my worry and my loneliness and my laughter.  No longer was this a book to sit on a shelf and never be opened.  This was a living, breathing, manual for life.  These words were leaping off the page into my heart and found me shouting yes! yes! like Tom Cruise jumping on Oprah’s couch.  Minus the crazy.

No these words are not crazy.  They are true.  They are not only for the past, they are for NOW.  These words are alive and transformative and centering.  These words scream “YOU ARE NOT ALONE”.  These words comfort and heal and give hope and usher in peace and bring tears and laughter and wonder.

Words are so important.

The other day I learned that the word “repent” can be translated as “return” and that pretty much changed my life. No joke. This feels like it needs a whole other blog post or maybe a book.  But if we just encouraged everyone to see the word “repent” – when Jesus says it, when the church says it – if we could replace that word with “return”, think of the difference.  It’s not repent because you are terrible and awful and horrible.  It’s return to Jesus and His path and the truth.  It’s not you are doomed and miserable- it’s not a scary, depressing word…it’s you’ve just wandered away…it’s time to return.  See? It’s hope and expectation and promise and reconciliation.

Amen?

One of our required reading books for Holy Yoga is written by Eugene Peterson and it’s a guide to reading scripture.  So he’s one of my favorites.  I picture him sitting down translating the entire Bible so more people can feel the Word come alive.  The work. The time. The commitment.  Thank you Eugene Peterson for your obedience.

One of my personal missions in life is to recognize the Word of God, the truth of God, the LOVE of God in today.  In the here and now.  In our conversations and our jobs and our parenting and our relationships and our art.   Music is big for me and this conversation between Bono and Eugene Peterson just blew me away.  It’s like all the worlds I love collided.

When I think of Bono, I can’t help but remember when a friend was at the U2 concert and she called me and just held the phone up and then screamed, “Bono is God!” into the phone.  It makes me laugh. Honestly, he’s pretty cool but not God.  I do love the way he worships on stage and the way he honors God with his music.

Looks like I’m not the only one inspired by The Message.  Enjoy this.

©  2016 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big YES™  All Rights Reserved

Waiting is a Verb

A wise friend told me the truth yesterday.

She said I might have to just wait.

Then she told me that “waiting” is a verb.

I asked God to show me what He means by waiting.  Actually, I asked Google to show me what God says about waiting.  Google and God gave me this.

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I cried.

Yes! Yes! That’s what I want.  I want to stop gritting my teeth and experience the glory-strength of God.

I want my life…all of it…even the waiting…to spill over into joy. I want to experience everything bright and beautiful that God has for me.

Lord, help us to go easy in the waiting…remind us that waiting is “doing something” if we surrender it to you…remind me that surrender is not giving up.

My yoga teacher said the other day, “When you surrender, you join the winning team”.

Yes Lord. Victory is mine. Maybe not right this minute but it’s coming.

Thank you.

© 2016 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™

 

 

Hi Feet! It’s Hands!

It has been awhile since I’ve posted here.  There are so many amazing things happening! I’m all over the place so this is going to be long.  Go ahead and get your coffee.  I’ll wait while you do what you need to do to hunker down and spend some time here.  🙂 I’ve missed all of you!

If you are not following Great Big YES on Facebook or following me on Instagram (@suebidstrup) then maybe you have not seen all the fun yoga that is going on over there.  Please take a look and follow me! Our Holy Yoga community is having a Peace on Purpose challenge for January – we are showing a new pose every day!  I’m trying poses I’ve never done before! I’d love to see your pictures too – remember to use #peaceonpurpose.

I just chuckled to myself thinking my mom is reading that last paragraph as if it’s in another language and thinking, “What are you talking about?!?!” #whattheheckisahashtag

I saw this on Facebook and laughed out loud.  Not at you mom, with you…we are all learning and our babies are teaching us!

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Here are some yoga pictures from Instagram in case you are not on social media.  Join the holy yoga community at @holyyogaministries.

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On the note of being all over the place…I’ve been thinking about all of our different personalities and how God really knows what He’s doing.  My son was telling me the other day how he doesn’t like things loud and crazy, he likes to be chill and hang out with one or two friends at a time, he doesn’t like big parties.  This is confusing to me. He doesn’t like big parties? WHY? I love big parties! But since he’s my third child, I am beginning to be a little bit (a wee little bit) wiser and I realize that hey, guess what? MY KIDS AREN’T ME!!! They are their own people! My job is to love them.  Not to try to make them into something they are not.  God doesn’t make mistakes! He gifted us with everything that we are and each and every one of us is a beautiful and necessary part of His plan.

This brings us to our different roles in the body of Christ.  We are all so uniquely and wonderfully made.  But sometimes, truth be told, we don’t love how we are made.  We might be the hands but we wish we were the feet.  We might have gifts that we don’t fully embrace because we are too busy looking over at the people who have the gifts we wish we had. You know what I mean?

Let’s start with the Word.

1 Corinthians 12:12-31 

The Message (MSG)

You can easily enough see how this kind of thing works by looking no further than your own body. Your body has many parts—limbs, organs, cells—but no matter how many parts you can name, you’re still one body. It’s exactly the same with Christ. By means of his one Spirit, we all said good-bye to our partial and piecemeal lives. We each used to independently call our own shots, but then we entered into a large and integrated life in which he has the final say in everything. (This is what we proclaimed in word and action when we were baptized.) Each of us is now a part of his resurrection body, refreshed and sustained at one fountain—his Spirit—where we all come to drink. The old labels we once used to identify ourselves—labels like Jew or Greek, slave or free—are no longer useful. We need something larger, more comprehensive.

 I want you to think about how all this makes you more significant, not less. A body isn’t just a single part blown up into something huge. It’s all the different-but-similar parts arranged and functioning together. If Foot said, “I’m not elegant like Hand, embellished with rings; I guess I don’t belong to this body,” would that make it so? If Ear said, “I’m not beautiful like Eye, limpid and expressive; I don’t deserve a place on the head,” would you want to remove it from the body? If the body was all eye, how could it hear? If all ear, how could it smell? As it is, we see that God has carefully placed each part of the body right where he wanted it.

But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you”? Or, Head telling Foot, “You’re fired; your job has been phased out”? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the “lower” the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it’s a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?

The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part, the parts we mention and the parts we don’t, the parts we see and the parts we don’t. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance.

You are Christ’s body—that’s who you are! You must never forget this. Only as you accept your part of that body does your “part” mean anything. You’re familiar with some of the parts that God has formed in his church, which is his “body”:

apostles
prophets
teachers
miracle workers
healers
helpers
organizers
those who pray in tongues.

But it’s obvious by now, isn’t it, that Christ’s church is a complete Body and not a gigantic, unidimensional Part? It’s not all Apostle, not all Prophet, not all Miracle Worker, not all Healer, not all Prayer in Tongues, not all Interpreter of Tongues. And yet some of you keep competing for so-called “important” parts.

But now I want to lay out a far better way for you.

AMEN?!?!

There’s a BETTER WAY!

We should walk around saying, “Hi Feet! It’s hands!  I’m so glad we get to do this thing called life together today!  I appreciate you walking me around! How can I help you today? Let’s get this party (not necessarily a big party but a celebration that we both find comfortable) started!”

I especially love this line: If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance. 

Who are you in the Body of Christ?

Take some time today to think about your gifts and then embrace who God made you to be.

The world needs you.

©Sue Bidstrup 2014 Great Big Yes ™ All Rights Reserved

If you are in the LaGrange area and want to join me next weekend, I’ll be speaking at the St. Francis of Xavier Catholic Women’s Club luncheon. What an honor! Can’t wait! Here’s the invitation.

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