Not Marked; When I’m Not Sent

God sends me. He gives me assignments. I’m still humbled and trying to make sense of that. If you’ve been following I Am Jonah you should know, by now, how humbling I feel in this regard.

When God gives me assignments something about me is revealed. More than me, but He is also revealed. It is through cracked vessels God’s light shines. It is in our humanness and frailty that God’s treasure is not only kept but also shared with others.

There are instances when God sends me and there are assignments that aren’t for me. God has His purposes for sending me when He does and sending others too. I need to be reminded, from time to time, that I am not the center of it. That it is not because I am great that God sends, but it is by His grace.

When there is a need and God doesn’t send me I am sometimes jealous of other people’s assignments. At other times I am glad, grateful that He sent someone else. Some of those times it is because I can see the need and hurt but don’t understand it.

The truth is, I may be a Christ follower, but I don’t identify with everyone’s challenges, hurts and pains. I identify more with some than others. I do pray that God helps me to see and love others the way He does. I am not there and don’t think that I will attain perfection at any point in this life.

God is sometimes gives me a minute taste and I wish I hadn’t asked when He answers my prayers. God feels deeply for the broken, marginalized and hurting.

When the hurting pray, God responds by sending us [Click to Tweet]

God has sent Mary DeMuth. Mary has written many books (I only learnt how to count to ten, and after that it just becomes many for me). She has submitted her gift with words to God and He has used that. I personally know many whose lives have been changed through her work.

not marked

She is sent to people I cannot identify with. To people who I know are hurting but I’m not equipped to help the way she can. Her assignment is one of those I’m glad and grateful I did not receive. A difficult one. Mary has written a book, Not Marked. It is about her journey, dealing with sexual abuse, how it impacted her life and how she found healing.

Because I am not able to do what Mary can I have chosen to do the little I can to help her. Through her book many lives will find healing and be restored. Because it is not directly your assignment, it doesn’t mean you cannot be a part of it.

Help Mary get this book to people you and I cannot reach. Help bring healing to millions.

The assignments God gives us affect us, but are not just for us [Click to Tweet]

Though we benefit from being sent, we are not the object of God’s assignments; others are [Click to Tweet]

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Update: Mary managed to reach and exceed her target. Because of that she her book will be able to reach more people in other ways. Follow her blog for details.

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Boring Christianity And Letter To Critics | Jonah Notes #02

Following Christ should be a grand adventure. Some Christ followers misrepresent Christ and what it means to follow Him. One of the reasons for this is a lack of vulnerability.

Worth Nothing

Jon Acuff did a post, Should Christianity Be So Boring, for CNN Belief. Jon gives an unusual but true insight into God’s heart. He unpacks what this should mean for Christ followers. Like me, you might be pleasantly surprised. Get a perspective on God’s heart and what running to Him is really like.

In the taste of I Am Jonah, Thom Rainer gets very vulnerable by writing to his critics. His post, A Note To Those Who Criticize Me. He talks about dealing with criticism as a leader and Christ follower. Addressing critics directly, Thom admits he needs the critics. I think that is not unique to Thom but to all of us.

On I Am Jonah

This week saw a lot of activity on the post, On Miley: My First Response And How I Should’ve Responded. This post unveils the wrestle I have, and many Christ followers have in dealing with either Christ followers who err or people living in contradiction to what God expects of us. It addressees how we can be judgmental and how we should react.

On GOD | What The Assignments God Gives Reveal, I share on how God has embarrassed me on assignments He’s given me. Not only that, but how I am glad He embarrasses me.

Following and still learning to follow Jesus, the Christ, I Am Jonah.

Is there anything you found this week you feel should make Jonah Notes?

Making Sense Of… | Jonah Notes #01

Jonah notes is about highlighting anything noteworthy fitting into the I Am Jonah theme. This is the first (hopefully of many) of summaries of things worth noting.

The series will focus on things that we need to grapple with, in search for alignment with what God expects of me, of us, as Christ followers.

juniper tree

The Meaning Of Christian Community

This was a post by Joel J. Miller, author of Lifted by Angels. His post, “What does ‘Christian’ community mean?” raises the question of how we are to be part of the community of believers.

What is the place for our preferences in light of the community? He asks: “But what can community actually mean if the individual is ultimate?”

Check out his post here

The Perfect Way To Do Church

Related to Joel’s post, Carlos Whittaker says, “I found the secret… THE PERFECT WAY to do church…” Carlos is a worship leader and has served in a large Church and varied contexts.

Carlos raises a point, which I feel we need to attention to. He makes what I think is the ultimate and most important point but I won’t spoil it for you. Check out the post.

The Pig Prayer

The legend, Jon Acuff, author of Stuff Christians Like, asks, “I read the Bible and scoff in dismay at people who cared more about their pigs than the healing of two demon possessed men. “How could they be so blind?”

He closes his post, by stating how torn apart He is between what God wants and how he wrestles. Oh, and the title of his post? “The Pig Prayer“.

On I Am Jonah

The most shared post was “Why I Am Jonah” which introduced the blog, journal, whatever you want to call it. It gave a general “why” for this blog, explaining the rift that sometimes exists between God’s desire for us and hour desires.

Someone Else’s Skateboard” was a glimpse into the reality of temptation, which some Christians will not give.

Similar to themes of Carlos and Joel’s post, incidentally I wrote before I saw the posts was “The Church: Loving Her While Hating Her Practices“. The post touched on the challenge of separating what the Church from her practices.

Outro

It is comforting to see how real others are about their faith and things they’re grappling with. From understanding the true meaning of community and the church to trying to really follow God.

My prayer: God help me to be a part and be the Church as you’ve intended. Help me know what it means to die to myself for the sake of community when I need to. Give me more courage to hold on to your desire and love for others and not my preferences or desires. Amen.

[image by cogdogblog | cc]