Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Advent Thoughts

First thoughts for today. I was reading this morning about whether faith is a crutch. During the course of my life, people have said to me that my faith is a crutch, a drug, a prop, an escape from reality - something they did not need. Some have said I've gone off the deep end. I'm taking Jesus too seriously. When will I come back to my senses? (Actually, believing in Jesus is coming to my senses, but I digress.)

Jesus - A crutch? Hardly. Faith in Christ is not about safety and caution or escape as a drug might cause. It’s about believing Jesus and trusting Him no matter what may happen, no matter how life is unfolding. It's about a relationship with a Person who is real and is solidly there. It is believing that my life really matters to God, that He values me a lot - enough to come, die for my wrong thoughts and actions and love me into heaven, even though I struggled at first to receive His amazing love. 

 I am certainly seeing the truth of that relationship with Him here in Morocco. Nothing has shaken it, but it has been tested. (We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed. —2 Corinthians 4:8) 

When one is stripped of the normal and the familiar, one often sees what one really believes. I'm missing my culture, my Charlie Brown Christmas special, my baking cookies with real chocolate chips and exchanging them with friends, my Christmas tree and my nativity and twinkle lights. I miss my dryer and a washing machine that does not die all my clothes blue. I miss a zillion little things, Christmas cards, Christmas music, and my dear loved ones' smiles and conversations. 

This Christmas I know, and you please know, that Jesus is not a crutch but a lover of your soul and my soul. No matter where we are.

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