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19 February 2014

Lower, Lower

Things are not always what they seem.

We are instructed by the Lord to be careful how we see. Oh so often do our eyes betray us. We see something and walk away convinced we know the truth because of what we have seen with our eyes, heard with our ears and touched with our hands. Our experience becomes our truth – about people – the people we are called to love from a life in Christ.

Man looks on the outward, but God looks on the heart.

As my days in Mozambique continue, and contact with people in the village becomes more common, I am gently reminded that history, economics, education and culture do not change this one thing:

Every person is created in Love, by Love, for love...

On purpose,
With His purpose.





People of all nations and all cultures, regardless of socio-economic status or education have to make this one choice every day; 


               to live from fear or to live from love.




There is an invisible line. You've heard about it. 
Some call it boundaries.

I'm reminded of my early days as a nurse. One thing they stressed in nursing school was to “keep a professional distance” with your patients. That was intended to protect you from the people for whom you cared. While at the same time we were expected to be the patient advocate, a liason to assist the patient in obtaining anything necessary for health – physically, emotionally and spiritually.

 
I found the same advice as I began to minister the gospel. Again, great expectations with flashing neon warning signs to avoid loving too much. Fortunately, the Lord placed pastors in my life that purposely chose love over fear every day, in every way.

Over the years I have inadvertently stepped over “the line”. And, over the years, I have purposely removed “the line”. Sometimes it has cost me more than I expected to pay. Many times it has blessed me. 
Every time, I would do it again. 
 

In this new world I see people everyday that have no such boundaries. There is no line to cross or to avoid crossing. Very often it is the just the opposite. A person will generally come inside your 'bubble' in order to have a simple conversation. Relationship is after all, relational. And relationship requires intimacy.

It's easy to think we know “people” from our side of the line. But once we step over the line, when we come to that place of fellowship, when we press our way into the bubble of another, we will always find things look different from the other side of the line.

From the beach we are convinced we accurately see land and sea. Once out on the ocean we discover a new perception of the land ~ and of the sea. A perception we can never know if we refuse to pay for the trip. When it comes to our perspective on people, the price is very high. What will you give? What is that life worth to you?
They warned Jesus about hanging out with harlots, tax collectors and especially wicked sinners. He did it anyway. They were sure He couldn't be a prophet because He appeared to not perceive what kind of woman was touching Him. His response was not in His own defense, but in hers, “he who is forgiven much, loves much”.

From their side of the line, they could not perceive the cost of the oil in her alabaster box.


People have great value.

People are worth loving.

More than once I have listened to the wisdom of men who have “walked this road before” and I have set it aside to take up the wisdom of Love that created the road, only to find that Love knew something that man did not. I regularly challenge what is perceived as wisdom.
 
We can keep people at arms reach or we can draw them in and wrap them in love and acceptance. I am reminded of being “grafted in”. Love not only draws us in, but Love binds us together with Himself, until we become one - indistinguishable from the One in Whom we've been grafted.

If there is a prevailing theme in my life, it would have to be “perception”. You can only see what you can see ~ until you find another vantage point.


Laura Hackett makes the point clearly (from my vantage point) as she sings the following song. Click here to hear it on youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h36Vv_iifGo  

And when next you are faced with the choice to fear (keep a safe distance) or love (step over the line/draw another into your bubble), check your wisdom from heaven's perspective. It is the greatest vantage point.

With His Heart,
 Kimberly

Lowest Place

VERSE1
You said there would be joy in the laying down.
You said there would be joy in the letting go.
You said there would be joy in the giving up my rights.
And now I see.
PRE-CHORUS1
Your River it rushes to the lowest place.
Your River it rushes to the lowest place.
Your River it rushes to the lowest place.
Your River it rushes.
PRE-CHORUS2
Come and rush over me.
Come and rush over me.
Come and rush over me.
Let Your River flow.
CHORUS
I bow down,I get low.
I open up my heart to receive Your love.
I bow down,I get low.
I open up my heart to receive Your love.
BRIDGE1
I've got to get to the wells of joy.
I have to dig for the wells of joy!
I've got to get to the wells of joy.
I've got to get lower, lower.



Proverbs 18:17
The first person to speak always seems right until someone comes and asks the right questions.