Remembering… Columbine 10th anniversary

I am just going to leave you with this picture I took this morning. My heart is heavy today for all of those who had family and friends die at Columbine. A dear friend of mine knew Rachel Scott. Today, I am keeping them all in my prayers. I’ll post something more tomorrow.

10 yr Columbine tribute

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LSOF: Giving Up Our Comfort Zones, and Become Secure in Christ

                                                                        water Pictures, Images and Photos

“ If anyone would come after me,
he must deny himself and take up his cross
daily and follow me.”
– Luke 9:23

I wonder something. I wonder if you are reading this, and sitting in a nice computer chair.
Perhaps, you are sitting in your living room on the couch, or maybe you are not even out of bed…

Are you comfortable?

What if I told you instead of sitting in that computer chair; to stand up and read this post,
Or if you are in your living room; perhaps, you could read this standing on your head, or if you are in bed, perhaps you could read this holding the laptop up in the air…

Would you be comfortable then? Probably not. But would you do it?

My friend had her 28th birthday today; I took her out to Applebees. We enjoyed some major food, and not to forget the Chocolate meltdown..oh yes:)

Music was playing in the background, and she pretty much sang to every song. She has always done that, usually I join in too:)

We found out that night that they were having Karaoke Night. She was ecstatic at first.
But then after each person got up to sing; I saw her enthusiasm fade.
Taking charge, I told the waiter to get the song book, so we could look through it.
Finally, we chose one(after much convincing on my part!) by DJ Sammy, “ Heaven”
I knew she could rock out that song if she tried.
She was anxious, but I told her that I would be right at her side, and she would be fine.
So her name is called, and then the music starts to play.
The music is the fast version, and her voice can first barely be heard over the loud music.
And through the entire song I just could see her face saying, “ Oh no, its not over yet.”
Then it was, and she could have transported herself back to the table, that is how fast she sat down.

She found herself, out of the comfort zone.

Its all about how we react to the “ strange” places we find ourselves in.

My church is doing a message “ Barbaric Faith” based on a book I believe that is by Erwin Mcmanus.

A few Sundays ago, we all got to church. There were 10 chairs, instead of the 400 or so that usually cover the floor.

We all stood surrounded by a wall wrapped in servant evangelism opportunities.
Instead of church that day(one inside a building) we were told to find a table
And go SERVE somewhere in the city until noon.

I chose to go give out free doggie biscuits, at a park in the next city. Some people walked neighborhoods and prayer walked, others gave out free water at Walmart, and some
Even gave out free kites at a park to children.

It was a dreary day, and the park I went to probably only had about 6 dogs there within the time I was there.

But it made me appreciate it so much more of the given “ opportunity” to serve.

I saw a woman with a small dog, and a youth and I felt my anxiety rise
As I went up to her.

I heard my heart speak to God, “ Are you sure this is okay Lord, are you sure I won’t
mess up and make this woman run for her life?”

“ Hi, my name is Angie, and this is Zach, and we are from Pine Ridge Fellowship, and
we would just like to give your dog some treats.”

The woman looked at me, and said, “ I am sorry, but I left my wallet at home.”

A bubble seemed to form in my throat as I added,
“ No, this is just an expression of God’s love, and there are no strings attached.”

I did get to talk to the woman a little more, and found out that she knew someone I did from another ministry. She never mentioned if she attended a church or anything like that, but just the feeling of being able to share with her a little of God’s love,
it did something inside of me.

When I was 17 yrs old and used to serve, it was different, because I did it with my Youth group, and this time around. I never had to ever show up, I could have gotten in my car and went home to sleep.

The point I’m making is, and I think my church did make that day was;
in our comfort zones, we may be able to reach a few people for God, but
our giving is very limited, and more so the response is expected.
Going out into the community, we didn’t know what to expect.

That is where God wanted us that day.

No one forced us to go, we went because we had been shown God’s love by other
similar experiences.

Someone gave their life to Jesus, so that I could serve. A beautiful domino effect.

I know we love our churches, and I know we love to be places where we are comfortable, and people know us and accept us.

But that will not always be so. Not everyone will love us, not everyone will accept us.

We just have to love them anyway, and accept that they don’t accept us.

It is definitely not easy to be out in the “ world”, especially places like our workplace, school, or maybe even in our homes.

But everytime it seems “ hard” to deal with, close your eyes and press harder from your heart.

Something else that might be a good thing to warn about, the enemy likes us in our comfort zones. He can keep a good watch on us there, and know we won’t disturb the destruction he is creating outside of our little bubble.

I have often realized that a lot of the times that I leave my bubble, that I can go out a little ways into the world and find God in such unexpected places, within people, within music, within pieces of art…anywhere.

And I find that as I am given an opportunity to seek that out, I am also given an opportunity to show someone “ who” He is.

We may not have a common God, but we can find something in common with people He loves.

My closest and dearest friends are not “ Christians” by the label.
And I sometimes am a little hesitant in sharing some blog posts with them,
or bible verses. EVEN THOUGH they love to listen.

People have opened their hearts to God, we can’t expect that every person we meet that doesn’t attend church, or someone who doesn’t have knowledge of the bible, or whatever, fill in the blank…we can’t expect that they have not had their heart open to God already,
that the seed has already been planted.

Someone may have been sharing about Him for years, but we need to show them love,
and we need to be interested in them, what they are about, and what they believe.
Even if we don’t believe in the same things. Its important to build relationships with people that we most likely would not have if we were given the choice.

Let me say that again, IF WE WERE GIVEN THE CHOICE.

We already have the will within us to go out and help people find God, or at least get to know Him.

You are wasting your life and your talents if you are in this all for yourself.
People around you, they already know what you can do, and what you are capable of,
but SO does God, and He KNOWS you are capable for more,
capable of doing MORE then you even see at this moment.

And it starts with walking away from what you are used to,
regardless of how anxious it makes you.
There are treasures in heaven waiting for us, but let God give you
the ones that He has placed on earth too.

“ This is the Air I breathe” if we took that literal for a moment.
I think of the movie, “ A Walk to Remember” where Landon says that love was like the wind, couldn’t see it, but it surely existed around him.

Love is in the air, a lot of it is. We just have to learn to recognize it, and let it flow from our own hearts. No matter the circumstances.

As April 20th 2009 comes near, I will conclude with the story of Rachel Scott, who died
at Columbine 10 years ago this month. I conclude, and dedicate it to her, as well
as all who lost their lives that day.

I also dedicate it to my friend Val, whose life was completely transformed by God’s love through Rachel. She lost a very dear friend that day.

I read the book about Rachel’s life, and I had a dream once where I saw her, and she asked if I would hold on to her journal. Even though it was only a dream, it had great meaning.

It was like taking the torch and going with it, where she left off, as Christ did the same.

The one thing that gives me chills each time I have thought about it was she wanted to start a chain reaction of kindness even to the moment of her death.

When the gun was held up to her, and the question was asked, “ Do you believe in God?”

and she answered, “ You know that I do.”

I can’t help, but wonder if even that moment she was trying to get that person to think,
that she was trying to minister to them, by maybe making them think in a split moment who she was and what she really was about.

She could have said “ No”, but she defended her faith.

Talk about being out of a comfort zone.

Her killers were blinded by their hate, they didn’t realize how much love
was wrapping itself around them.

Maybe they didn’t get a chance to change, but I wouldn’t doubt that a chain reaction of
kindness changed the hearts of others they knew, who were similar.

When it comes to God, the fight of good and evil is already won. He always wins.

It only takes one heart to change the world.

And it starts with getting up, and taking a look outside at the world around you.

“ You just might start a chain reaction.”

Columbine…10 years later…

I just received this email and I wanted to share it with you.
rachelstears_cov-10th_anni_ed
 

Hey gang,A little behind-the-scenes follow-up with ya…

First, things are going gangbuster’s over here in Highlands Ranch for the 10th anniversary of Columbine. (Can you believe it?…We’re all ten years older too, hopefully wiser! What was it that Michael W. Smith said about how short life is?)

The latest related updates include:

– Rachel’s Tears, The 10th Anniversary Edition, has just been released which features a bonus chapter at the end along with other special inclusions (see attached image). This new edition will be available shortly in both the LFCNews Store and at RachelJoyScott.com.

– A brand new 10th anniversary issue (special Edition) of LFCNews is currently in production and will be launched in April. The issue will feature a retrospective cover story by Beth Nimmo, Rachel Scott’s mother along with some great stories by our past staff writers.

– The long-awaited Wikipedia entry for the Lullaby for Columbine Project will be released shortly with background information on the project and the people. An initial posting will be followed by a more extensive one shortly afterward.

– The Lullaby for Columbine, Love Endures CD will be available as a download soon on several sites including Amazon.com and iTunes. We’ll keep you posted on our progress.

As far as activities go concerning April 20th, nothing is planned for the project or the staff. I know many who are simply going to either be out of town or “laying low” as this time of year understandibly continues to be very painful for so many. Please keep our community in your prayers, and again, thanks for all of your support throughout the years.

Thanks and God bless.

 

LSOF: How to stick out like a sore thumb

ugly duckling Pictures, Images and Photos

I sort of chuckle as I begin this post, because the title is something most of us would not choose to be.
Let me explain:)

I was reading through one of my old journals yesterday. It was from 2004, I believe.

This is what I had written,
” To stick out like a sore thumb is the only true way to make a difference in this world.”

I encouraged myself.

Personally, I understand this concept very well. I have always been the misfit.

I learned how to crawl on my back as a baby, before I learned how to crawl the right way. And I am told I was a fast one:)
I guess from the beginning of my life, I just learned how to see the world from a different perspective.
I learned early, to see it from MY point of view.

People could tell me the sky was blue, and I would be certain to say,
” No, its actually an aqua color from where we stand, but its only because its the sun reflecting off the ocean, otherwise it would just have black as a color just as if you were standing on the moon.”

To make this short and sweet, I define and analyse EVERYTHING around me.

I was also VERY observant, and I actually remember in 2nd grade; one of the students was running back in forth in the classroom, and my teacher yelled at him to sit down…just as the principal walked in the room. After he left I asked my teacher, ” Why is your face so red?”
It was obvious she was embaressed, but I was too young to realize that it wasn’t a good question to ask.

Yep, I’ve always been a sore thumb. I ask the questions others won’t and I think of things, most people wouldn’t spend so much time thinking on.

On my journal pages, I title them. In my bible, I label who taught me what verse, and when.

My wall has ” My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” written in pencil. ( Don’t tell my mom LOL)
However, the wall in my senior english class had, ” Life is a tale told by an idiot.” -Shakepeare.

I write on anything I can find. I used to write on styrophone cups, gum wrappers, and sometimes the bottom of my shoe if I had a good writing idea…I wrote a whole devotional once on the church bulletin…that was interesting to rewrite it from.

But I’ve been the oddball in times where I was the only RIGHT one.

In a dance recital, I was the only star pointing the right way,
and in my junior math class; I was the ONLY one to get the critical thinking skill correct, even though it took me 40 min to do, AND I did it an entire different way then the teacher had.

I will often tell people aloud though, ” its a journey to be me.”
because it is the truth.
I wake up with my anxieties, and my concerns…but go about my day, I try to sing them away, or write a verse over and over in my mind that would coincide with it.

My math teacher today tried to explain to a student,
” Angie is over here with this, and you are over here;
basically, she gets how to do substitution, but not math.”

I take the hard way, instead of the easy way.

I drink a can of coke by facing my back of my palm to me, and grabbing onto it.

I like to lay down and look at the ceiling, and picture things inside the lines, like constellations.

I dig 70’s music. My parents took me to see Fleetwood Mac my junior year for my birthday.
And when I turned 21; I was taken to Pleasure Island, where the first club I went into was disco.

I like to write random things in clouds on a piece of paper.

All these things are actually pretty random…but I have a point:)

In all these things, I was definitely different, but I was ME. I didn’t change who I was, because someone ever mentioned any of these things were strange. It was just apart of ME.

I think of the civil rights stuff, and politics…

Not everyone has it right, but not everyone has it wrong.

It just depends on the perspective you look from.

Everyone is a sore thumb in someway.
But not everyone is willing to admit it.

“Don’t let your character change color with your environment. Find out who you are and let it stay it’s true color.” -Rachel Scott