Rachel Shane

Month: September, 2011

John Mark McMillan

You know that popular worship song “How He Loves”?  The David Crowder Band did not write that song. Kim Walker did not write that song. John Mark McMillan wrote that song. And his version dominates the others. Just sayin’.

Now I got that off my chest, John Mark McMillan is so, so great. I am going to actually see him live in a few weeks, which I am happy about, because he is on the list of “10 bands I need to see live before I die”.  Yes, I have one of those lists. You should too.

You should by his album “The Medicine”, and then get his other album called “Economy” on November 1st. John is one of my favourite artists because:

1) He is a great musician – well, I am pretty sure he is great musician, but that is only based off all the youtube videos I have seen. I will be able to confirm this in a few weeks when I see him live.

2) He is great at writing lyrics –  “The Medicine” album lyrics are phenomenal. If you hate his music, at least just read his lyrics. I reckon it’s worth your time.

3) He is an authentic person – from reading his blog and watching youtube videos of him just talking, he seems to have stayed a real, passionate, man of God.

4) Two words – Epic Beard.

And don’t just listen to these videos, watch them. They are also great.

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Birthday

So it’s my birthday today. Birthdays are great because basically it could be a terrible day, but overall, the day isn’t that bad, because it is your birthday, you know what I am saying? And I can use run-on sentences, cause it is my Birthday :).

Anyways, wanted to share something on my heart today.

These past two days there has been much rejoicing in my life.

Yesterday was my last day working at Mercy Hospital, and for all of you know even know me a little, know this is a happy thing.  I am a person who only has 2 jobs now! I am not going to work 60 hours a week again, or wake up at 3 am., or make hundreds of phone calls with no results anymore.  I am real real happy.

Moving a different direction, in November 2008 I was attending Concordia College, and on a Monday night 6 of my friends and I got together to worship, and pray for a revival on our campus.  We faithfully got together every Monday, worshipping and praying, and inviting people to join.  After I graduated the group of students continued to meet and pray.  Last Monday, this group met for the first time of this school year, and there was approximately 400 people there!!! This is something to rejoice about and praise God!! How awesome!! God is moving in huge ways on that campus!

Another story, for the past year I have been working at Renovation Church. We as a church have also been praying and working for God to move in our Church and in the city of Blaine.  Last spring God started moving drastically and our church grew to 200 people. We currently meet Sunday mornings in a gym, and don’t have much more chairs for people to sit in, so this Sunday we are starting to have 2 services at our church!! How awesome is that?!

I am blessed to see God moving in so many places.  In these times we should keep working like crazy, but also rejoice. We should be excited for what God is doing.

Romans 12:11 says, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord”.

It is really easy to be excited about God and ministry when I see Him moving in so many ways.  But I really want my attitude and actions to reflect that verse no matter what ministry/job I am a part of looks like.  Even if I end up in a super frustrating job again (which the hospital was), I never want to be lacking in zeal for the Lord.  Even if our church stopped growing (which is unlikely, but just if for the sake of this sentence), I am going to continue to serve the Lord just as passionately as if we were.

No matter if I am 22 or 65, I want my passion for Lord to never decrease.  The more I get to know Him, the more I love Him, and the more passionate my heart is about God. He is good, no matter what season. How sweet is that?

Call of Duty

Hey friends!

Look at me, blogging all the time. How cute.

Well I know you were all in fear of me being alone too much this weekend, but no need to fear, I think one of my married couple friends saw my blog, took pity on me, and invited me over.  They are great people!

Anyways, most of you know that I work at a sweet church called Renovation Church, but most of you (my sweet blog readers) do not attend, because I think most of my blog readers live in Fargo…anyways.

I think I am going to start posting on Sundays or Mondays something that I learn from Renovation each week. I am learning so much here and I would like to share it with you, cause it is good stuff. Better than what I can come up with.

I actually got to sit in the service today (Wahoo!) and the sermon series we are going through right now is called  “Call of Duty”.  Pastor David Sorn is impressing the simple truth that there is a spiritual war going on in life right now, and it is the most important battle in life. We as Christians need to step it up and get involved in this battle. It has been challenging in all the right ways, so you should listen to the sermons here.

I wanted to share two pictures that David talked about this past Sunday that have been running through my mind often.

The first picture he said was [not verbatim], “Imagine if you built a hospital, and then invited all the healthy people in the surrounding cities to come lie down in the beds.  That is what people are doing with church. We have this place to help save people, but all we do is invite our christian friends who live in other cities that are already saved”.  Touche, David.

Then he started talking about how sometimes Christians are always focused on just becoming a “better Christian” and doing things like reading the Bible 30 times, leading a Bible study, being a children’s ministry volunteer, going to take some theology classes, and basically just work on one’s holiness.  Those are not bad things, but David was trying to paint the picture of this – “now imagine you are in heaven, with all your spiritual certificates and accomplishments to show God, but the places where your friends and family should be standing next to you are empty”.  Um, also convicting, David.

This series has been so good for our church just to remember the REAL spiritual battle going on.  In America I believe that Satan has developed people to believe in this form of naturalism, where no one believes there is a spiritual world, and the only things that are real are what we see in the natural.  The result of this has created more non-believers, and lazy Christians who have lost sight of the purpose in life.

As Christians we are ALL called to fight in this spiritual battle. We are fighting for people’s eternal destinies. And truly, it is a short battle in comparison to eternity, so really, come on. Give it all you got.

It is also good to remember that God conquered all sin not with strength, wisdom, power, or anger; but with love.  This is how we are also called to fight in this battle.  We will only win if we fight by sharing, showing, and living out the love of Jesus Christ.

Silence.

I have a confession, or more so, a question.

I have not brushed my hair once this week. I have taken a shower every day this week, and once I get out I throw up my hair into a messy bun.

Lazy, yes. I justify my actions because I will not be able to do this in a few months, since it will be too cold outside and I will have to dry my hair.

But seriously, this has been everyday.

Girls, do you have these weeks of not paying attention at all to hair? How often to you actually brush your hair?

 

Anyways.

So it is labor day weekend, and my parents went up north, my single friends are out of town and my married friends are on double dates or with family.  So, I have been spending some time alone.  It has been mainly fine because I have had so much work to catch up on anyways, but I am reminded today of how uncomfortable I am with silence sometimes.  Last night I had a movie on. Today I have been listening to music, or playing music, trying to have noise keep me company.  About an hour ago (9 pm) I hit this point where I was sick of music so I called a friend and chatted for a half an hour, creating other noise.

Then I went in my room, trying to figure out how to make noise. I was going to put on a sermon.  But then I realized I hadn’t read my Bible yet, so I went and did that, which I usually try to do in silence to not be distracted. I was so uncomfortable with the silence though that I started reading out loud.

Mother Teresa said, “We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is a friend of the silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence. We need silence to be able to touch souls”.

Silence can be uncomfortable. But it is a necessary spiritual discipline.  I am probably guilty of letting noise cover God’s voice too often. And that is not okay.

And, it is good to take time in silence to ask God if there are activities in our life that are honestly just distractions of what we really should be doing.  Sometimes when we just keep going in life and never stop, we end up filling our time with what we desire to do, and maybe not what He had planned.

So I am going to enjoy the rest of the night, and probably next couple of days, in solitude. I am excited to hear His voice, and be changed by Him in the quiet.

Simple Truths.

I may be the weirdest person ever.  Whenever I feel like I am really desperate for God to move in something in my life, I fast about it.  For the past few weeks when I am praying I have felt so desperate for God to move in SO many things in my life that I have told him many times “I think I am going to have to fast forever for all of this to happen.”  God’s voice has been really loud in my life the past month, and really simple.  He told me that I didn’t need to basically starve myself for Him to move through situations in my life (yay cause I really like food).  He simply told me this:

“I know Rachel. You can trust me.”

And then I feel better for about 5 minutes, and then I start freaking out again and bring something else up to God, as if He probably didn’t remember that situation in my life.  Then He told me this:

“Rachel, I created the universe.  I can handle it. You can trust me.”

And even though I have sweet friends to talk about all my situations in life, I was praying and telling God that no one understands how I feel. And then God told me this:

Rachel, I am listening to you all the time! I know how you feel! Trust me!

Then tonight I met with a friend and we were talking through the difficult things in life, and we just stopped, remembered that God has never NOT been faithful to us, and that we probably need to stop worrying about these tough situations.

Reading through the gospels, I have noticed lately that Jesus fought off temptation many times by simply stating who the Father was.  Jesus knew the simple truth of who God the Father is, and from only that fact, he was able to resist all temptation.

Also, we can learn from Jesus that life is really tough as a Christian. But we will be in heaven some day, and that will be sweet. Simple. Truth.

So basically, this blog is really simple, but timeless transcendent truth is not something I am going to come up with. But I can remember simple truths in life, such as:

God is my Father who loves me.

I can trust Him.

There is nothing that God doesn’t understand.

He is faithful.

He is listening to me.

And that helps in tough times, which is life.