Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Overexposed.

Our family has attended Park Cities Presbyterian Church for years.  And years.  Coming out of a bible church background, the whole 'high church' style of worship was new to me.

Our pastors wear robes.

Sometimes, when I'm getting dressed on Sunday mornings and spend all my time trying to find clothes for my children that are clean, I wish I could wear a robe.

I love singing hymns with a full choir and a large organ or piano.  Maybe because I can't hear myself singing loud and off key.  A little glimpse of Heaven.

Anyway, the fine Women's Ministry folk have started a devotional page just for men.  not really, it's for women - but that would be funny.

And those fine women folk asked me to write this week's devotional.  It's below, but you can also subscribe to it here.  And you can read it in your robe.  Win/win.

Page One, a weekly devotional from Park Cities Presbyterian Women

Overexposed.

Growing up in the eighties and early nineties, I perhaps didn't clearly grasp the need for adequate sunscreen.  I may have used Crisco.  And I have indeed seen the inside of a tanning bed more than thrice.  Now, at 41, I'm seeing the results of my solar misconduct firsthand.  Upon first meeting my dermatologist, he took one look at my sun-damaged skin and said a little too excitedly, "Oh, you're going to be a good patient."  Now he sends me Christmas cards from his lake house that I'm sure I've helped fund.

These days, epidermal-y speaking, we're taught to cover up.  That, if we avoid exposing our delicate skin to the harsh rays of the sun, we will preserve it's tenderness and health.  We use SPF 55, wear long, gauzy, sleeves in the burning heat, and don hats with brims the size of bistro tables.  And, I'm wondering if we've begun to employ that practice in our relationships as well.  I'm wondering if, in an effort to protect our delicate hearts and preserve their tenderness,  we are covering them from exposure in our community of Christian women.  Perhaps its a predisposition to self-protect, or perhaps we've been burned before and the sting and residual damage has caused us to reflexively pull our metaphorical sweaters a bit tighter over our shoulders.  But the idea of being known isn't something we should fear - it's something we were created to long for.  I talked to a new mom the other day at school and, when I asked how the adjustment to Dallas had been, she said, "You know, I've realized how important it is for us to be really known.  That's been the hardest thing about moving - no one knows us."

She's right.. 

Being known, in fact, is an extravagant gift of our Heavenly Father.  First Corinthians 8:3 says, "But if anyone loves God, he is known by God" and as his body, the fact that we are not only completely known by our Father but even in our known-ness, we are absolutely beloved, brings us liberty without fear.  And from that beautiful, primary relationship, we are able to literally overflow with a deluge of blood-bought love toward one another.  Reckless, fearless, love. 

The other day, I spoke at the Bridge and it terrified me.  I told the women that I love to write but speaking, not so much. I feel exposed and I can't edit and I'm all too familiar with the verse, "Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks." (Matt 12:34).  I feared how what I said might expose what lied deep in my heart - how it might change perceptions of me.  I cried and stuttered in front of a group of you.  There was snot.  And the evil surmising began the moment I walked out the door.  "Why did you say that?"  "For sure you offended someone with that comment!" "What in the world are people going to think of you now when they see you in church"!  It was super-fun.

Opening up to one another takes practice and it's scary.  I think we all fear friendly-fire and so it feels safer and even right to cover those parts of our lives that are tender, ugly, or different.  But, I pray as I move forward - as we all move forward - in this church, I will resist the urge to protect and preserve my heart like shielding my skin from the harsh sun.  Instead I hope to practice being known and knowing one another in the deep places of our souls that we might walk in transparent friendship and honesty.  Our lights together in the body of Christ are brighter than our light alone - reflecting the Son.



6 comments:

ctgardengirl said...

Good post - thank you for sharing. Since moving to CT about 6 years ago, I've learned to shield my heart and the real me, because it seemed it wasn't being accepted. I was too Open, too friendly, and I talked alot, because I was so lonely and depressed. I don't think we realize that enough when we encounter others like this.
I've become more quiet, more withdrawn, I guess, but since I've been digging deeper into the Word in the last year or so, I've come to realize that I truly am 'known' by God, no matter where I live, and I'm OK. This has tempered me, in my relationships. I'm not quite so needy. I'm not so insecure. So desperate.
And I am finding the people here seem to responding to the quieter, more secure, more confident me. It does takes time.
People here are not generally open like other places I've lived, being Newenglanders, at least in this neck of the woods. Perhaps it's more city people, I just don't know. But I've found peace with who I am, with God, in spite of it all.
Funny thing. Nothing on the outside has changed. I still don't know hardly anyone. But on the inside, everything has changed. God is a good God, and He truly does Love me, and Know me. And I am so thankful for that.

Looey Tremblay said...

Thanks for this amazing blog.

Minh Hoang said...

Trắng da có nhiều phương pháp , nhưng hầu hết mọi người điều sử dụng các loại thuốc trắng da nhưng đặt ra nhiều câu hỏi quanh các loại thuốc này như thuốc uống trắng da an toàn , thuốc trắng da ivory caps có hại không , thuốc trắng da ivory caps có tốt không ? Đó là một vài câu hỏi liên quan đến thuốc làm trăng da ivory caps , cùng tìm hiểu nhé . Ngoài trắng da thì my pham nhat ban sakura còn giúp da giữ được nét tự nhiên và chống lão hóa vì dùng kem chong lao hoa sakura , ngoài làm trắng da thì còn là kem chống nắng tốt và giá cả thì cũng là vấn đề vì vậy có nhiều câu hỏi như kem chống nắng neutrogena có tốt không ,.. Có nhiều loại nên có nhiều giá khác nhau . Nếu gót chân bị nứt nẻ thì nên dùng kem kem trị nứt gót chân neutrogena foot cream sẽ giúp bạn có được bàn chân đẹp như ý.

Thao Nguyen said...

OZ Bên cạnh việc chuyên cung cấp dịch vụ trọn gói thiết kế và thi cong noi that , thi công nha othi cong van phongthi cong shopthi cong karaoke , thi cong nha hang, thi cong khach san, thi cong resort, thi cong spa, công ty còn chuyên sản xuất các mặt hàng đồ gỗ nội thất cao cấp trong nước và xuất khẩu.

Công ty có một đội ngũ nhân sự bao gồm kiến trúc sư, cử nhân mỹ thuật công nghiệp lành nghề và yêu nghề. OZ luôn đưa ra những sản phẩm thiết kế nha dep, biet thu dep, nha pho dep, can ho dep, nha ong dep , phong khach dep,  phong ngu dep, sáng tạo đồng thời phù hợp với khả năng đầu tư của khách hàng. Bên cạnh đó còn thực hiện ý tưởng của quý khách hàng trong thời gian nhanh nhất với chất lượng tốt nhất thông qua các kiến trúc sư nhiều năm kinh nghiệm.

Phụ tùng ô tô huyndai
ba đờ sốc
Phu tung oto ford
Phu tung oto Toyota
Phu tung oto kia
Phu tung oto Mitsubishi
Phu tung oto honda
ba do soc
phụ tùng ô tô Hàn Quốc
Phụ tùng ô tô mazda
Phụ tùng ô tô Daewoo
Hoàng Gia là thương hiệu wedding và tổ chức các sự kiện đặc biệt hàng đầu tại Việt Nam, luôn sáng tạo và đi đầu với những ý tưởng phông sân khấu cưới vad dịch vụ tổ chức cưới cưới độc đáo, ấn tượng

Danh Ngọc said...

Thoái hóa cột sống là bệnh rất thường gặp đặc biệt là ở người già , vậy cách chữa benh thoai hoa cot song như thế nào an toàn và hiệu quả , cùng chờ xem nhé. Collagen là sản phẩm giúp làn da trắng đep và trẻ hóa , chống lại sự già cỗi ngày càng tăng của làn da , có nhiều loại collagen tốt hiện nay như super collagen + c , collagen shiseido enriched và sản phẩm collagen nhat ban cũng không phải ngoại lệ. Ngoài ra còn có các loại collagen khác như fish collagen . Có nhiều dạng collagen như nước , bột , vien uong collagen ,.. Khi dùng có nhiều câu hỏi đặt ra như collagen neocell có tốt không ? uống collagen shiseido có tốt không ? Tất cả những câu hỏi này sẽ được trả lời sau đây.

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