Saturday, September 16, 2006

Ladies, lament!

This weekend I had an opportunity to team-teach a ladies only class with my friend/DTS professor Sandra Glahn at the annual Breaking Free Singles' Conference at OCBF. Our topic was a real discussion regarding one thing we all have in common whether single or married: the problem of pain and uncontentment.

Although Sandi has been married for over 27 years, she too has experienced her share of pain. I like how she put it,

"We're not running a suffering olympics here...we all have real pain."

The crux of our message consisted of encouraging the women in the audience to lament their pain as an offering of sacrificial praise, which is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord. However, as Sandi taught us in the class: before worship comes an acknowledgement of pain.

How many of us have been taught that principle?

Unfortunately in the church we sometimes feel as if it is 'ungodly' to complain or be real with God, when in fact, there are numerous accounts throughout scripture showing just the opposite. For example, some of the most popular psalms are the ones of lament. A lament is a cry, a complaint, a groan. In the Psalms of Lament, it begins with an acknowledgement of pain, but ends with a confession of trust in the Lord--returning to what is true of God's character.

Earlier this year I wrote a personal Psalm of Lament. You can read it here. I encourage you too to write your own personal lament to the Lord. I found it to be healing for me and it truly ministered to my heart the head knowledge I had of the goodness of God.

Anytime we in the Body of Christ receive an opportunity to minster to others, share our sufferings, our triumphs, and perhaps even our current battles, it is an honor. After the class a young woman came up to me with tears in her eyes grateful for the invitation to lament to the Lord. Praise God!

I believe that young woman, and I pray others present in that room heard the message:

"Ladies, lament!"

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Calling all Singles!

My home church, Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship is hosting their annual conference for singles entiltled Breaking Free: Putting the Pieces Back Together.

The conference will take place this Friday & Saturday, September 15th and 16th. There are a plethora of workshops to attend and suit all singles. If you would like more information click here.

We are planning on serving over 2,000 singles in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex area this weekend. Please be praying for a smooth conference and for singles to experience freedom in the season God has called them to right now!

I'll keep you posted on how the event turns out!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Quote of the Day!

"One of Christianity's greatest gifts to all who follow Jesus is the opportunity to experience genuine community with other believers. We're united by our acceptance into God's family, our common purpose in loving Christ and others, and our mission to build Christ's Kingdom for His glory. In the community of the Body of Christ, we find acceptance in spite of our imperfections and encouragement in spite of our failures. And we also extend that acceptance and encouragement to other believers in practical ways. This is God's plan for His Body, the Church, that we cultivate redemptive relationships with others who are following Jesus with us. When we do, our joy becomes more full, our lives more blessed, and our corporate witness more effective."

Andy McQuitty, Pastor of Irving Bible Fellowship