Acoustic

Cheyenne sang loudly with the small group sitting around the room, as the melodious reverberating sound of an acoustic guitar filled the space around them.

It brought warmth and a deep-seeded joy to hear the sound of Austin’s voice singing as he played. His eyes closed, his head fell back occassionally as he bobbed his head and body in rhythm to the music.

Cheyenne felt the presence of the Spirit stirring in the room as they worshipped in song together.

Tonight was simply a night of reflection and worship, to the glorious sound of an acoustic guitar, with their closest of friends. The fellowship that drew their hearts together like nothing could ever break them apart, was overwhelming in the deepest of ways.

Austin began to slow the tempo and his strum became gentle as the song came to an end, right before the next started.

Nothing in the world brought more delight to Cheyenne than hearing an acoustic guitar fill the expanse of a small room. It was certainly her most favorite sound in all of the world. Nothing could compare to it. Each chord humming in enchanting rhythm with the next, sustained evenly as a sound that pleased the ears, with gentle vibrations she could feel in her chest.

Closing her eyes, taking in the moment, Cheyenne was at peace, and all was right with the world, in a supernatural way that only the presence of God could provide.

In this moment she thanked Him for the guitar, and for music. For the mystical way an acoustic guitar could romance the soul, and for the talent God had given to Austin to master the technique.

And then she praised God from the depths of her soul, taking nothing in the moment for granted, knowing that this time she spent with her dearest of friends and the mingling of the Holy Spirit was special. She hoped the others felt as connected in Spirit as she did.

They spent time together long into the early hours of the night enjoying each others company, singing together, praying for one another, and abiding in love and joy, comforted to know the things that mattered most to their broken hearts were easy to share with one another, in a way that brought healing and hope.

And when they had said goodnight, Cheyenne curled up in bed content, reflecting on the time they had spent together, still filled with peace and joy. Still remembering the enchanting lull of the guitar as Austin played for them.

And it was the sound of the acoustic guitar seered into her memory as she fell asleep.

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For Freedom

Little One,

Why do you faint with exhaustion and worry?

Whyever do you doubt when it’s clear I love you?

You have been set Free, so why are you dismayed?  Why so downcast my child?

There is nothing for you to fear or worry over.  It’s finished.  I’ve got you.

Wasting away, locking inside your head, all you do is wither.

You’re so talented.  You’re smart.  You’re funny.  Your amusement in the strange things is how I wired you.  Your joy in the little things is how I created you.

Your heart waits to blossom, and yet you don’t let it.

Rejoice!  You have been made new.

I do not punish you.  You hinder yourself.

Break out of your shell and rejoice.

The newness of Life waits for you to indulge.  Love it.  Run with it.

Trust, little one.  Just trust.

Accept that I know what is best for you, and run with it.

Church Hunting

It seems the worst thing a person could put themselves through, is the experience of church hunting.  Finding a place to call “Home”, and a church “Family” to be apart of.

Several things that stand out as you walk into a church, is the interior.
Where are your children going to be during service?   Is it easy to find?  How many hallways do you have to wind through before you find it?
Where are the restrooms?
Is there carpet?  Is there concrete?
Will your expensive cup of hot coffee have to cool in the car while you sit through over an hour of service?

The next thing people note, are the people.
They look friendly, but are they going to talk to you?  Is the church even small enough to know when there are guests?
Will the Greeters be the only people who make your acquaintance?  Will they care if you come back next Sunday?
Are you going to meet somebody genuinely interested in who you and your family are?
Will the person who told you you can’t have your coffee in service be the only person who reaches out to you?

And then you sit down, and service starts.
Why do churches spend so much money on a sound system, when no one knows how to use it?
Either the acoustics are too loud, or the sound is muddy, or you can’t hear the vocals…..
People around you worship God, oblivious to you and who you are.  Wrapped up in their moment– not even realizing you’re there for the first time.
Never taking the moment afterward to reach into your Life.

People don’t go to church to sit through service.  They go to find people who will connect with them and help them find the things they are looking for.
They come in, wanting to be poured into, and leave empty.
When the emptiness continues, time after time, eventually they stop trying to find something new.  They stop going altogether.

The “greeting” comes around.  Your hand might be shaken, you might be nodded at.

And then the pastor gets up.

Now, going into a non-denominational church presents several problems.

1) The pastor is waaaaay too Charismatic, and you sit through what feels like a televangelist service.  It includes prophetic “messages”, or escatology and “the end is upon us!”
((Which I believe is highly possible….. but not quite the same as they do))

2) The pastor starts mistranslating scripture, taking things out of context and pushing modern ideology instead of sound theology held strong through the ages.

3) The pastor goes into political moments and asks for the wrath of God to fall on our Nation’s leaders.  Also not biblical.

4) Prosperity preaching.

Non-denominational churches seem like they all spring out of the Pentecostal movement.  Where are the Spirit-led, Baptist background churches with sound theology, but openness to the Gifts?

5) Universalism

At any rate, it’s so hard to find what you’re looking for, when there are so many options….  and you’re tired of looking.

I’m tired of looking.
I’m tired of going to church, never being talked to.
I’m tired of going to church and only ever being talked to by the guy who tells you you can’t have your coffee in service.

The lack of friends in my Foresaken home in the High Plains becomes even more than obvious as our second child prepares to come into the world and we lack EVERYTHING for a little girl, because the first was a boy.

The lack of a church Family with people we can talk to as our life stands on the balance of Change, is also highly frustrating.
Man was not intended to be alone.  Even Jesus surrounded himself with friends.

Jesus was highly extroverted.  He was a natural people person and confident in who he was.
Unfortunately, mankind is not at all like Jesus.  And you walk into a new church and walk out of a new church still waiting to be reached into.