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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Who Says Water and Oil Don't Mix???

Yesterday I experienced a mixing of water and oil. In the morning, we Beeson Pastors met with Kent Reynolds for a time of song, prayer and devotional reflections. Kent talked about thirsting for God, something that hits home in my heart of late. To conclude our time together he encouraged us to dip our hands into the holy baptismal waters of the little chapel we met in as a symbol of our deep thirst for more of God in our lives and ministries.

Later in the day, we experienced oil on those same hands. Dr. Steve Seamands, who is teaching our class on The Theology of Ministry, was talking about how Christ's wounds can not only heal our wounds but take our deepest wounds and turn them into a redemptive work of grace. That is, God shows us in Christ that He can take the wounds that the world inflicts upon us and actually use those wounds to bring healing and wholeness to others. In essence we, like Christ, can become wounded healers. As a symbol of this, Steve anointed the palms of our hands with oil to symbolize the giving of our nail pierced wounds for His glory.

So, you see, water and oil does mix...in fact, yesterday it mixed to perfection within God's plan for the renewal of my life and ministry.

Here are some quotes from the class on The Theology of Ministry that I think you will enjoy. Whether you are a lay or pastoral minister, these quotes are liberating reminders of what life and ministry is all about:

“God exists in personal relationship and therefore cannot be known in any other way except by relationship” --Eugene Peterson

"The greatest trap in our life is not success, popularity or power, but self-rejection...Self-rejection is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us the ‘Beloved.’” --Henri Nouwen

“I am willing to travel and preach as long as I live; and I hope I shall not live long after I am unable to travel...Live or die, I must ride.” —Francis Asbury

“God wants lovers. Oh, how tepid is the love of so many who call themselves by His name. How tepid is our own - my own - in comparison with the lava fires of his eternal love. I pray that you may be an ardent lover, the kind of lover who sets others on fire.” --Amy Carmichael

"In order to grab hold of the new trapeze bar that God throws us, we must let go of the bar that has become familiar and comfortable to us; we grow by our willingness to let go and to take hold of the next bar. Risk-taking will always entail putting our religious reputation on line; risk-taking is all about who is in control- if it’s us we won’t risk, when it’s God who is in control we will take risks." --Steve Seamands

“I am grateful I do not have to love—I have to allow love to love me into loving.” —E. Stanley Jones

“Death is God’s delightful way of giving us life.”--Oswald Chambers

“Jesus isn’t try to make you better--He’s trying to make you deader.” --Francis Frangipane

"As one of His redeemed ones, you are His delight, and all His desire is to you, with the longing of a love which is stronger than death, and which many waters cannot quench. His heart yearns after you, seeking your fellowship and your love…His life is bound up in yours; you are to Him inexpressibly more indispensable and precious than you ever can know.” —Andrew Murray

“The greatest competitor of devotion to Jesus is service for Him.” --Oswald Chambers

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

This immediately makes me think of the scripture I was reading this week:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort; who comforts us in all our affliction so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 2 Corinthians 1:3&4

Take care and please give my love to the fam', Tammie

Lenny said...

Thanks Tam. Glad you're keeping in touch. Great verse of Scripture...one that I have gone to on many occasions.
Lenny

Carl T. said...

Hello Pastor and Amy,
While we are not the "Blogger" type, we still very much enjoy following yours. We miss you guys, but there's something comforting in following your journey and experiences. How Great is our God? (Who even shines though your blog)
See you soon,
Carl, Sonia and Carl Jr.

Lenny said...

Thanks Tirellas. Great to hear from you. We miss you too and look forward to seeing you soon.
Lenny

Anonymous said...

I've been overwhelmed by Calvinists out here lately so I had to come and get some solid Wesleyan theology. :) Oh! How I miss working down the hall from you & Pastor Tim!

Hope you are doing well!

-Jen :)

P.S. How do your kids keep getting cuter? Is there a limit???

Lenny said...

Great to hear from you Jen. Please shoot me an email and let us know how you're doing.

Lenny