What I understand from the vision is that Living Word Church is an Ephesians 6 church. They are a people that are well equipped and ready for an intense game, more challenging. The challenge, however, means that Living Word Church is switching to an unfamiliar model, one that doesn’t necessarily make sense given the normal framework of how things “ought to be done.”
For many of us, it is common practice to wear masks. We put up facades that hide who we truly are. We smile when we want to cry, and we push people away when we want to be held. Because at the core of it, we have been so hurt by people and events that we are crippled by fear of vulnerability. We don’t know how to be vulnerable.
The one thing I always want when I am around others is to feel wanted and valued. I want to know that me being there makes a difference to others and that I matter to them. Don’t we all though? From the beginning of creation, God said it is not good for man to be alone (Gen. 2:18). It’s in our nature to crave connection and to feel a part of family.
I began my tribute by singing to my mother, Elaine Veenstra, at her Celebration of Life this summer. Little did I know the journey of grief, emptiness, and joy that I would encounter.
Have you ever had someone in your life that you loved, BUT you just didn't feel like you could quite jive with them? You really genuinely wanted to get along and live peaceably with them, but there were just these certain things about them, these certain little (or maybe even big) annoyances that just about drove you up a wall, or maybe even began to BUILD a wall between the two of you. . .
Does the Lord ever speak to you through a song? He does to me quite frequently, possibly because I consistently am listening to music, or have a tune of some sort going through my head. This fall, there has been a particular theme stirring in my heart, and it was sparked from a conversation I had with the Lord over the song Every Table is an Altar by the worship band, Bread & Wine.
I once saw a sermon Francis Chan gave on YouTube. Ironically, he talked of people who had come to him extolling his various social media outlets...and how he had nothing to do with them. The accounts were useful to those who found them (myself included), but no matter the good they were, they just didn't come from the man himself. Good, even useful, but not quite true.
Like many in our interconnected society, I've been blessed with a chance to live digitally.
Interdependence means, “every part of the system has an effect on every other part of the system, and changing one part of the system will result in a change in another part of the system.” So it first means that we are in “systems,” and then second means that we impact the other members of the systems we are in.
So why does being a part of a system matter in terms of my faith?
My family and I recently flew to California to visit my parents. I have flown dozens of times in my life, mostly between the ages of 16 and 22. From 15-hour overseas flights to 17-seat planes that needed to stop for gas after 45 minutes—I’ve done it all. I can’t even recall all the flights I’ve taken, but I can remember the excitement of finding out who would sit next to me and the conversations that might take place. I have many fond memories of friends that I’ve met on airplanes over the years. Each was like a God-ordained meeting; sometimes ministry took place, and other times it was simple conversation and shared stories
Over the last month or so God has really been speaking to me more in depth about the word “covenant.” It seems to be something that God has impressed on many lately. With all the events happening in the world this summer, I think more and more we need each other.
Recently, the Lord has been highlighting covenant relationship to us. There are a few examples of covenant in the Bible with some of the main ones being the Noahic Covenant in Genesis 9, the Abrahamic Covenant in Genesis 12, the Mosaic (Old) Covenant and the New Covenant offered through the life and death of Christ.