"This is how we know what love is, that Christ laid down His life for us, so we too should lay down our lives for others." 1 John 3:16

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Full of hope

 We are in an interesting place right now. We are really feeling the weight of no support or income.  I (Jason) have been continually applying for jobs and was blessed to be able to do a few days work for an intern at our school who needed some remodeling done.  Its like a roller coaster ride every day.  We applied for food stamps and they just went through last week, right in the nick of time, so now we don't need to worry about food...praise the Lord!  Our phones got shut off this last monday, so we are phone-less. One of the hardest things during this season, since Christmas, is the silence we have felt from friends.  Our best friends have remained in close touch but we have heard almost nothing from others that we normally communicate with.  

Our relationship as a couple has been strengthening tremendously, but not without moments of perceived despair or conflict caused by growing pains.  We are doing a class called Love After Marriage that is put together by a pastoring couple at Bethel and it is AMAZING!  It has been super challenging but the tools they use are SO good and the end result is a strengthened relationship with God that is reflected in the marriage.  I would look into their material if you are married...i have never seen anything like it (and by seen i mean heard of from our limited  perspective of being married only 3 years haha!)! For the class, we meet once a week and are divided into tables of 4 couples, including ourselves.  We were selected to lead our table as "table facilitators" and know that God has put an emphasis not only in strengthening our own marriage but in bringing freedom and life to other marriages as well.  We are only a few of weeks in and can't wait for more!

Last weekend Cierra and I found ourselves weeping by the closing prayer of Bill Johnson's message.  He touched on areas that God has been stirring in our hearts as of late; Authority and Power.  Authority is like the badge that a police man wears, signifying that someone higher than him has given him permission to do what he is assigned to do.  Authority is given to us as children of God, when we receive Jesus.  Power is like the gun that same policeman carries, a practical tool that that can be used in a very impact-full way.  Often people think that they are operating in power when they are merely under a corporate anointing that God's grace is on.  What Jesus modeled was not simply him, as God, doing miracles by the authority of God.  He showed that only our own personal history, or intimacy with the Father is what makes us true living witnesses with power to a real, living God. Power and Purity are one of if not THE life messages of Bill and the need for us to dig our own wells of intimacy with God is of great importance.  

The book that we are finishing this week is Heavy Rain, by Kris Vallotton.  I could talk about it for hours!  As Kris discusses, the Church needs fathers.  People who create a family and who put an emphasis on maintaining relationship and not on rules or doctrine.  The church also needs teachers and so forth within the 5-fold ministry (Ephesians 4:11 and I Corinthians 12:28) in full operation.  Check it out!

Fun stuff.  We have never felt so full of hope and yet so challenged to express it on a daily basis.  God is good. Thanks for listening to our hearts poured out. 

" For this reason I bow my knees to my Father ... that according to the riches of His glory He may grant you to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith  -that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen."
Ephesians 3:14-21

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