Sunday afternoon. Cool, overcast sky. Motionless trees only just beginning to blush in tune with the calendar date. October, "eighth month" in Latin (although, no longer the eighth month), synonymous with Fall in the Northern Hemisphere and Spring in the Southern Hemisphere. Funny how that works. The beginnings of death and life, and all that separates them is the tilt of the planet. Death and life. And all that separates them is the bent of our mindset.
The beginning of my weekend was spent in Clemson with friends most dear to my heart. I drove in on Thursday and came home Saturday evening in order to make it to church on Sunday morning. We couldn't get to Clemson fast enough and all of a sudden it was over, until next time. We reveled in our new found freedom of graduation and plans and hopes and all that the Lord has been doing since that fateful May when we traversed that graduation stage. Not all of us, of course, but Lauren might as well be graduated. Any minute now. We spoke of selling out, of making our passions our vocations, we spoke of life, art, love--love--and of this something that won't let us be free of each other, even if we wanted to be. As we nibbled on pumpkin bread, Kelly read us an excerpt from her latest project, one that we all want her to finish, if only to see ourselves from the outside. So what if the names are changed. Sell out, all of you, please. Sell out to the One who sold out for you. Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!/Oh for grace to trust him more!
Andrew went to the U2 concert last night at the RBC center (!!!!!!) which consisted of waiting in line from 7am until concert time, which was approximately 7pm. He said it was worth it. I believe him. We fell into bed, exhausted, and were almost late for church this morning. The sermon this morning was challenging--talking about modern day idols in our hearts, i.e. anything that we think we just cannot live without or anything that we go to when we don't know the answer or are struggling or burdened that is outside of God. Not just that, but how those "weeds" can strangle the roots of the Truth and distort our interpretation of who God is, what he has for us, and what he has for others. One example was "vacation", and how sometimes our society can be so stressed out that some people feel that they literally may perish without a vacation. Most of the examples cited were not bad things, per se, like careers, vacation, etc. but things that could easily become the center of our attentions, affections, and so on and so forth. We heard about Balaam's donkey from Numbers and how the iniquity in the heart of the king of Moab and the iniquity in the heart of the prophet Balaam so got in the way that the Lord used a donkey to stop Balaam from cursing the nation of Israel. Our "homework" was to do a "google" search of our own hearts and ask the Lord to reveal the things in us that we worship that are not him. Chewy, gritty, hard to face. But so very healthy. Our leadership class was partly on the Father Heart of God and Evangelism (two lessons each class period). Both were very good, especially the God the Father lesson. In other news, Catch the Fire has begun the process of buying a church building that will be a more permanent and accessible home for the members of CTF. We are so excited and are believing God and his promises--the work he has begun already will come to completion.
On the calendar this month is Collin's fifteenth birthday (today, actually), Jordan's bachelorette weekend, Andrew and Christy's wedding, and Halloween. Tonight, we rest, do homework, laundry, meal plan, and have dessert and coffee with Joanna and Graham at their new apartment--well, Joanna's new apartment until Graham joins her in November. I'm also going to begin changing my name this week-- social security, driver's license, etcetera. Hopefully I will survive the ordeal and come out on the other side relatively unscathed.
How 'bout them apples?