Saturday, February 23, 2013

Tea at the Junkyard

I love Patricia Polacco's books...she is one of my top ten favorite children's authors!  When I read her books the kids ask me why I am crying...again!

Today I read my favorite, The Junkyard Wonder, at our Ladies' Tea.  Here is the talk I gave:

This book for me was a continuation of what God has been teaching me for a while…this is the story of who we are in Christ….a story of Grace!

“Welcome to the junkyard, ladies!!” 

“We are…didn’t you notice…all of us are…different…you know, odd.  Like stuff in a junkyard!”

I assume that everyone in this room can relate to that “junkyard” feeling.  Perhaps we’ve overcome our own inferiority complex or we’re still working through the pain, but if we sit and ponder our lives for a while, each one of us can point to a time when someone told us we just didn’t have what it takes.  And, most of us believed them. 

“You’re fat!”
“You’re boring!”
“I don’t want to be your friend!”
“I don’t love you!”
“I don’t have time for you!”
“I would rather spend my time with someone else!”
“You’re stupid!”
“You’re ugly!”
“You’re lazy!”
“You just don’t have what it takes!”

Maybe not said this blatantly, but we’ve all heard some form of these degrading comments. If we haven’t ourselves, then we’re dealing with the pain of our children hearing…”You’re stupid, unlovable, unruly, bad….the list goes on!” 

These degrading comments are debilitating.  Blame it on Satan.  Each time we hear this from someone in the flesh, he whispers, ‘That’s right…you are’…and our ‘junkyard feeling’ continues!’

But, I am here to tell you, Beautiful ladies…
“Today you have entered  a place of wondrous possibilities! What some see as bent and broken throwaways are actually things waiting to be made into something new!  Something unexpected.  Something surprising. “

Here is what the Creator of the universe says about you…
  • You are my child.  (John 1:12).
  • You are my friend.  (John 15:15).
  • You are my delight. (Zephaniah 3:17)
  • You have been set free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2).
  • As a child of God, You are a fellow heir with Christ. (Romans 8:17).
  • You are accepted by Christ. (Romans 15:7).
  • In Christ Jesus, you have wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption (1 Corinthians 1:30).
  • Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who dwells in you. (1 Corinthians 6:19)
  • You have been set free in Christ. (Galatians 5:1).
  • You have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 1:3).
  • You are chosen, holy, and blameless before God. (Ephesians 1:4).
  • You are redeemed and forgiven by the grace of Christ. (Ephesians 1:7).
  • You are God’s workmanship created to produce good works. (Ephesians 2:10).
  • You have been brought near to God by the blood of Christ. (Ephesians 2:13).
  • You are a member of Christ’s body and a partaker of His promise. (Ephesians 3:6). 
  • You have boldness and confident access to God through faith in Christ. (Ephesians 3:12).
  • God loves you and has chosen you (1 Thessalonians 1:4).
  • You have been made complete in Christ (Colossians 2:10).
We all need a Mrs. Peterson in our lives, someone who can remind us that we’re genius’.  We can do anything through Christ.  The possibilities of our lives are limitless.  Someone who can say, “This is who God says you are…and I believe it”…someone who looks at us just through the eyes of Grace…no expectations…no judgment…GRACE.

For me, that instrument of grace first came in the form of an accountability group in college.  After years of being rejected by my so-called friends, 3 girls and I would get together and talk and pray our little hearts out.  It was the first time in my life I was completely honest with someone outside of my family.  This gut-honest girl group prepared me for marriage.  I got used to sharing everything and feeling accepted.  So, before we got engaged I made sure to air all of my dirty laundry (with great fear and in trepidation) with Nathan.  And, surprise…there was grace.  And His grace for me finally allowed me to see God’s grace realized in my life.  See, without knowing it, I had been “trying” so hard to be holy that I wasn’t resting and relishing in His Grace.          

That is where He wants me…and you…resting and surrendering to His Grace…allowing His Holy Spirit to do all the work!

Can you imagine a place where you could be completely honest about the darkness and doubt that creeps in?  
About the fears you face on a daily basis?
About what is really going on in your home?
About the inadequacy you feel when you talk to others?

This is that place…

We all need a Mrs. Peterson…we all need to be a Mrs. Peterson to others as well…

A Vessel of grace…Grace to speak the genius we see in others…Grace to listen without condemning…Grace to allow our mouths to zip and not speak that harsh word…grace to pray for the Holy Spirit’s conviction in others’ lives…Grace to applause the victories and the realized failures…Grace to walk side by side on the journey…

“Every one of you is my wonder!”    

I long for each one of you to rest in the arms of His Grace right now…You’re forgiven…He’s chosen to forget…and He longs for you to sit and listen to Him say, “You are my wonder!  I see the possibility…I see the amazing outcome!"  

His grace will carry you…His grace will keep you on the path, showing you how and where to walk…

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