Saturday, August 28, 2010

Changes Brewing

There are some changes taking place in our family, big changes.  And no, we are not adding another family member at the moment for those that had that as a first thought.

I'm sitting here trying to figure out how to word this and it's just not coming.  So, I'm going to get straight to the point.  I, personally, am going to be taking an extended leave from the internet.  That means blogs, Facebook, and e-mail, research...everything.  I've been convicted about where my time goes and a lot of it is wasted on the internet.  As a people,  I believe that so often we come up with millions of reasons why we can't do this or can't do that, when in reality our busy schedule is very unnecessary.  I know that for me, the time that I spend on Facebook, e-mail, blogs, and research (even for good things) eats up a lot of my time.  While it's not something that I feel I need to give up forever, I do feel that it needs to be taken out of my life for an extended period of time so that I can focus on the things that matter.  Top priorities first and when those are balanced then I might add some internet time back in.  Honestly, I don't know how much I will add it back in.  When we got rid of TV we wondered what the heck we would do with the time!  Now we wonder how we wasted so much time in front of a screen watching meaningless stuff.  I believe that it held me back from stepping into the fullness of who God has called me to be.  It was a great distraction.

What is it that really matters?  Well, my family matters of course, and they are getting my time already.  Sure, sometimes in the morning I will check e-mail, and naptime can have some moments for getting online, but really that's not where the bulk of my issue lies.

People matter.  Sharing the gospel and pouring into peoples lives is what matters.  Building relationships that are deep enough to feel you are able to call on each other for anything is what matters.  We were built this way.  Often it's the things that are not shared directly that cause change in our lives.  Would you agree?  There are times when advice is given to me that I listen to and make changes accordingly, but I think that some of the most powerful changes I have made in my life and in my thoughts come from watching what the Lord is doing in someone else's life, from being around them and seeing changes in them.  It is often unspoken things that have the most power.  So, while I love sharing with you here, you are only getting part of me.  You aren't seeing as much of my weak side as you would in real life (because I can't share with you what I'm not aware of for one thing).  The Lord is really speaking to me about investing time in people.  People that are here in my very close proximity community.  Not 20 minutes away, more like within 5 minutes or so.

We recently started going to church in a new location.  The small church that we attended previously dissolved and one thing that was very important to me (and Handsome agreed, but wasn't caring as much as myself) was that we attend very close to our home.  It was important to me that we live near our new building so that we had a greater chance of connecting with people that live RIGHT HERE.  People that we have more ability to spend face time with so that we can connect the way we were meant to connect.  I am not able to place my hand on the shoulder of a person over the internet.  I cannot look into your eyes when we speak and ask if I can pray for you.  There are just things that are not possible to do in this venue.  Things that are very important.  Things that I think we are getting farther from all the time.  While this location for church is not exactly what I had in mind in some areas, I KNOW that it's where we are supposed to be right now.  And things are happening.  God is using this new connection.  And it's exciting.  It can also be said that it is stretching me (but not by negative events, by good ones).

So, what am I saying?  I'm saying that I feel strongly that the Lord wants me to focus on creating strong relationships with people that are near us.  Discipleship if you will.  For my growth.  For their growth.

Couldn't I do that while not going offline?  Aren't I being a little extreme?  Well, I wondered those same things and tested to be sure that this was not from my own mind, but from the Lord.  I do feel confident that it is.  You see, there are many people in our lives that can be ministered to.  SO MANY!  There are many people that can minister to us.  BUT.  But it's about quality, not quantity.  I read recently about how Jesus chose 12.  He chose 12 men to pour his time and teaching into.  12.  That's it.  God himself in human form chose to limit himself to 12 men.  He really lived day in and day out focused on growing them, teaching them the things of God so that they in turn could go out and pour into others.  Teaching is important, but investing your time, your LIFE into others is what creates change.  And I don't just want to be a part of a church who grows in knowledge.  I don't just want MY life to grow closer to the Lord.  I want to be part of growing the love of God in others!  That's what He called us to do.  I don't want to be a person who shares the gospel and then leaves much to be desired by way of what to do next.  (Some might be called to that, but I know that's not me.)

Can I be honest?  I don't think that I can recall one person that I have really shared the gospel with.  Ever.  You know why?  Part of why is because for the longest time I didn't even know how one would do that.  I shared parts of what I believe, but I didn't ever feel like I was spreading the kingdom of God.  When I invest my time into the depths of a person's spirit, when I spend time in prayer and sharing the deep parts of me and listening to the deep thoughts of them- I feel like I'm doing something.  I know that both of our lives are being changed.  But it takes time.  It takes investment.  THAT'S what I want to invest in.  I want to invest where it will make the most quality difference.  I want the most bang for my time bucks =).  When I stand before my Lord one day, I want to know that I did the most that I could with what I had and I am not going to let anything get in the way.  I'm not going to let fear, distraction, doubt (of myself or the Lord), or anything get in the way.  Show it to me Lord, and I will change it!

He has showed me the wasted time I spend on this box in front of this screen.  I will change it.  For if we truly fear the Lord, we will make quick changes where they are brought to our attention.

Now, I do have a few things that I want to share with you before I go offline.  I am still trying to figure out how to share them and when to do so, but they may still come in the next week or two.  After that, I will most likely be offline for the most part for a year or so.  I want to give enough time to the change to really see results happen.  If the Lord doesn't direct me otherwise, I would like to post after that time to share with you the changes that have taken place in our lives (we have a lot of changes going right now).  That is IF anybody remembers us by then =D.


Mom said...

I, as well as others will miss your talented photos and writing. But I still get to be connected to you. I will be supportive in any way I can. I hope this experiment gives you lots of insight for personal growth.

even pretty girls need to read said...

Amb - I agree 100% that I will SUPER miss your positivity on the internet. However, I fully support it. I've been sans cable for...5 years now. It is amazing how much more life I live without it.

Plus, we've had a dark period in our friendship (dark as in not speaking, not as in awful), and look how that turned out fine. It is like you are in my life even if I don't see you.

This just means I might have to visit you IN PERSON.

Love you, your beautiful family, and your wonderful soul!



J. R. Miller said...

Sorry we wont be able to stay in touch :-(

..well I will hold you to it that since I wont get any more updates on your life, you will have to visit me in San Diego :-)