Friday, August 27, 2010

The Necessary Evil

I have been struggling a lot lately with church. Now listen carefully to me before you freak out or turn me off. I love church. I have gone all my life with very few exceptions. I have been loved on, lifted up, refreshed, blessed, and felt the presence of my Lord and Savior. With all that said...I don't find it to be enjoyable any more. It must be me. The bible tells me I am to worship and it isn't about me being entertained or feeling all spiritual and weepy after a service. I try going in with giving to God and not "what's in it for me" I think what is bothering me the most is the politics of church. I have been a member of several churches in several states and even a few different denominations. It is all the same. The theology may be different but the politics are all the same.We say love each other, we say forgive one another, we even say that we do love "so in so" but let me tell you, actions speak louder than words, and our actions are anything but loving! We are ugly, mean, holier than thou, proud, etc. I think church is a place where we judge each other, gossip instead of pray and have huge power struggles over who is in charge. We must break God's heart and Satan must love it. I believe the reason churches struggle so much is because we let Satan. He doesn't want churches to even survive little alone thrive. I am tired of mediocrity and settling. It isn't enough and God doesn't want it. I keep thinking maybe the next church will be different. I will not stop going to church. I know the benefits and the command to go. I know it is a great foundation for my kids. If nothing else they learn that Christians are flawed and very imperfect and need a Savior. I just wish we would stop playing church and wounding each other, and acting like the pharisees who are so much better than everyone else. Stop playing church and really pray and let God work, I think we would see miracles happen if we did.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

summer recap

Summer is coming to an end in the O'Dell household. I know it is still well over 100* still outside and the bugs are in full force but school starts again next week. No more sleeping in, although my kids are up at 6:30 most mornings now, no more sitting around in our pj's, no more "I'm bored". All this will be replaced with getting up and hearing "I'm tired and want to sleep", "I can't find my shoes", "do I have to go to school?" I will try to stay calm and encouraging, we will read our devotional most mornings, I will attempt to make good breakfasts and lunches, I will probably fail miserably at least several times a week.
Our summer has not been typical for us this year. Paul had 2 surgeries so we stayed around home most of the time. We had our own camp homefront for the 2nd year in a row. We saw lots of free movies down the road, the popcorn isn't free but it is still a great deal. We got to go swimming a few times had VBS and just enjoyed being together...most of the time : D My cousins came to visit for a few days and that was a real highlight for us! The kids have all grown (Levi is wearing 14 slims and he is only 9). They are changing before my eyes and faster than I would like. Nathaniel starts kindergarten in a few days and I am not sure how I will handle it. He is very excited and that helps but boy is the house going to be quiet. I need to seriously be on my knees before God. I also need to do some spring cleaning...ok getting rid of a lot of crap. Anyone who knows me knows how well I keep house.I need to start using the wii active again. I will have plenty to keep me occupied, can anyone say facebook lol. I won't have a cute little boy bugging me though and making me laugh, I won't have to take him with me to the store and hear "can I have that, can I have that, can I have that?" I will get to hear all about school from his perspective, and that will be fun. I know this is a milestone for both of us and it needs to happen. I can't stop it. For as long as I can remember I wanted to have kids, I never thought of the painful times that would take place. School is bittersweet and no matter now many kids I had I would eventually have to let them all go. They are God's anyway and He can take care of them so much better and loves them more.I will have to be brave and let them all go. One day they will go to college and them what will I do? I will get through this and God will hold me. I don't know how anyone makes it without Him. Anyway, I am glad we had this lazy summer to enjoy being together and I know Nathaniel as well as Jennifer and Levi will have great stories to share, besides I am a parent volunteer, I will be at the schools almost as much as the kids.