My Mundane Musings

Growing up I longed for the fast paced life of big city life and corporate America. Now I’m a stay at home mom of 4 in a small rural community! And I wouldn’t have it any other way! (At least for now).

Forgiveness… June 18, 2008

Filed under: church,family,friends,life,news,profoundness — Rebekah Sanders @ 9:10 am

We’ve been through some tough times lately. Some people who we felt close to betrayed us. I know that seems like a harsh word, but that’s how I felt. People who we at one time considered some of our biggest fans, our friends, suddenly decided to start bad mouthing us. Well, I never heard about anything that was said about me personally, but I know they talked about my husband.

And the things they said. Oh, they were so unkind. Calling him arrogant. Accusing him of having a God complex. Of being a dictator who wanted things done his own way. Things so far from the truth that they could not have been more wrong.

And it made my blood boil. Really, really boil. At times, I wanted to go ring this person’s doorbell and kick them in the shins. *THAT* would give them something to talk about.

But the thing is – more than anything, I was hurt. Deep in my soul, these people who I trusted. Whom I looked up to even. For them to say these things. Things I looked at long and hard. Things I asked others about because I wanted to make sure there was no modicum of truth in them. I watched as my husband became defeated. Depressed even. It was an ugly, ugly time in our lives.

I never did ring the doorbell and kick them in the shins. I wanted to say something many, many times. But each time, God had me hold my tongue. I knew nothing good could come out of me being ugly back, so I was content to sit back and know that someday GOD would be their judge. Someday they would have to stand in front of God and give an account. I was going to let God vindicate me. And I would sit back and relish in the fact that God’s punishment for them would be far worse than anything I could bestow on them.

In May, we were at our denominational district council. It wasn’t really so much anything that was discussed at Council, but more that I had a LOT of time on my hands to sit and think and let my mind wander. During one business session, I was reading blogs and I don’t even really remember what it was about or who it was by. It was one of those wandering types of randomness that I so often encounter while online. But I remember reading Jesus words as he hung there on the cross. “Father, forgive them, for they know now what they do.” It was more a pondering moment in my heart than anything else. I definitely didn’t connect the two issues in my mind at that time.

On Tuesday night, we had an amazing service. I was thinking again of these people who had wronged us so many times. People I thought I had forgiven in my heart. I just couldn’t seem to move on from it though. I had forgiven, but I certainly wasn’t free from it all.

As I sat in that service that night, the very fact that they would be JUDGED because of something they did to hurt me and my family hit me like a ton of bricks. I literally remember feeling the realization slam into my chest like a ton of bricks. God was going to hold them accountable for their actions. LORD, HAVE MERCY! My spirit cried out within me. And I called out to God.

“Father, forgive them! They didn’t know what they were doing!!!”

And just like that – insert finger snap here – the floodgates of my soul opened and I heard the voice of God speak to me as clearly as I ever have before, “And that, daughter, is what forgiveness is all about!”

I’ve got a new perspective on forgiveness now. A new perspective on God’s love for me. For everyone. God doesn’t want to get even. He’s not out for vengeance. He’s in the business of love and mercy and forgiveness. And it’s only because He’s able to forgive that I’m able to be free!

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STORMING… May 30, 2008

Filed under: family,kids,life,news,weather — Rebekah Sanders @ 8:44 pm

It’s crazy storming outside. We’re having horrible thunderstorms and there is a tornado heading for Chip’s parents town (sirens and everything). My kids are FREAKING out. I’m updating Twitter and have a couple pics over there ————-> for those of y’all who are praying.

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Editing to say that we weathered the storm. I’ll tell you – my kids get more worked up and hyper over a storm than they do if you give them just a bit bowl of sugar! Wow!

I did have a couple cute conversations with Seth when it was all winding down though.

They had gone up to bed already when we got some thunder with the backside of the storm. Seth came downstairs and was asking me if we needed to go in the basement. I assured him that we didn’t, but he wasn’t convinced easily. He started going on and on about the tornadoes, only he called them “tomatoes.” At one point he couldn’t remember what he called them. He said, “The toe… toe… melons! There are no melons in the basement!” I almost lost it! I assured him that, “No, there were no tornadoes in the basement.” He just looked at me and said, “No more tomatoes!” Nope, kid, don’t have any of those either!

Then later, he was all snuggled up on my lap. The storm was really raging again outside and he was over being afraid of the tomatoes. We have satellite for our television, so if the storm gets too thick we lose programming until it clears off a bit. When the satellite goes out, a screen pops up that says as much. When it came up, he said, “OH! It’s a text!” Then proceeded to read it to me. “No more tomatoes!” (I really didn’t have the heart to correct him – he’s my last baby and I want to hold onto that for a while yet). He was so serious when he read it too. I asked him who it was from and he just looked up at me, serious as a heart attack, and said, “From God!” and gave me a big smile! I assured him that indeed there would be no more tornadoes tonight (more because of what the weather guy said than anything) and within minutes he was sleeping on my lap. The perfect way to end the night!

 

Tackling Tuesday… April 29, 2008

Filed under: American Idol,church,entertainment,family,kids,life,news,shopping,television — Rebekah Sanders @ 11:15 am

There are two days left in April – if you count today – and I’m FREEZING! It’s 45 degrees outside. I thought we left Minnesota 10 years ago??? My body does not like to work when it’s this cold outside! I want to stay in, curled up under blankets and drinking coffee!

But, I don’t have time for that. My days are filling quickly. Thankfully Tuesdays are one of only two days a week that we don’t have to be on the ballfield. I’m currently at home and finishing up giving baths to the littlest two. Kait is taking my place at the church this morning and helping set stuff up for the rummage sale. She’s loving it and loving the attention of all the wonderful grandmas and grandpas over there. I’m sure they’re loading her up with cookies and snacks and I’ll be the one to pay for it later, but at least my sneez-y allergies aren’t bothering me this morning.

Elijah and I have to sit down and figure out the best week for him to go to camp. I’ve got loads of design stuff to do for the church. I need to refigure the signage for the rummage sale this weekend, start working on baccalaureate, tweak some other signage and sermon graphics and CALL MY GRAM because her birthday was 2 days ago and I still haven’t talked to her!

OH! And my new books have finally arrived. What I really want to do is sit down, snuggle in and start to digest Pop Goes The Church by Tim Stevens. Or I Became A Christian And All I Got Was This Lousy TShirt by Vince Antonucci (although this one has already made it’s way to Chip’s office so it may be a while before I see it again).

OH! And everything I have to do today must be done before dinner. Because after dinner, we have to go find a pair of cleats that fit Elijah’s ever-growing feet! Which are now as big as mine!!!! And I should probably sort through the assortment of cleats in the closet to see if we have any for Kait and Noah. I don’t want to go cleat shopping more than once!

All that before I come home tonight to blog about American Idol. At least *that* I can do from the comforts of my snuggly blanket!

 

Not my fault… April 18, 2008

Filed under: fun,life,news,weather — Rebekah Sanders @ 10:03 am

Apparently that fault belongs to New Madrid or something!

We were sleeping, rather soundly I might add, in our own bed for the first time all week last night. It was WONDERFUL. I didn’t even hear the train. But at about 4:30 this morning, our house started rocking and rolling. Our bedroom door started shaking and I got a bit dizzy laying in bed.

It was an EARTHQUAKE!  And here in Central Illinois, when your house is rolling like that, well it’s a pretty big deal. We don’t live on the West Coast. I tried finding it online in the middle of the night, but finally just checked Twitter.  Yep, earthquake. I didn’t think it was an explosion, but when the plant in Illiopolis blew a few years ago, we felt it AND heard it. This time I didn’t hear anything, so I figured it was an earthquake.

And it’s not the first one I’ve felt since we’ve lived here. But at 5.2 this was the biggest I’ve ever felt. Awesome! Noah was the only one who woke up. He thinks it’s a very cool thing and has been talking about it all morning!

For those of you who missed it – you can read about it here: 5.2 magnitude earthquake rocks midwest  The epicenter was only about 100 miles from us.

 

Not sure which I’m more excited about… March 3, 2008

Filed under: entertainment,fun,life,news — Rebekah Sanders @ 10:34 am

The new Indiana Jones movies…

Or the new Get Smart movie…

 Pretty sure that we’ll see both.

 

Ask a silly question… February 21, 2008

Filed under: blog,friends,fun,life,news — Rebekah Sanders @ 8:11 pm

I asked my husband what I should blog about. I’m in a blogging slump and I’m having a really hard time coming up with topics. So, here’s your chance, ask your silly question…

 Chip’s suggested that I express my thoughts on the impact of cow flatulance on global warming. Apparently there are people out there who say that cows produce too much methane gas and it’s a contributing factor to global warming (which you really would have a hard time convincing me of since it’s currently 20° outside).  Funny thing is that a lot of those same people are also enviromentalists and vegans/vegetarians. I find that ironic since we’d have less cows if they would eat more beef. So maybe we should blame THEM for not doing their part?! rofl Sometimes I say the craziest things!

(This of course was mostly tongue-in-cheek. I don’t eat much beef myself, although I do enjoy a good steak or a great burger from time to time).

Anyone else got something they want to hear my thoughts on?

 

Where would I be without Jesus? February 17, 2008

Filed under: church,internet,life,news,Nifty Stuff,profoundness — Rebekah Sanders @ 4:32 pm

Our pastor asked that question this morning. Just happens that he’s the guy that I’m married to. I’ve often thought that I didn’t have much of a testimony because I can never remember a time that I didn’t know God. I’ve never been away from God. Sure, I had my times of rebellion (which most people would laugh at because I was so not the rebellious type).

But I remember being in college and having a real encounter with Jesus. One that wrecked me and made me see how wretched I would be without Him.

You see, I was raised in a fairly legalistic church. I remember being taught the rules and told to follow them and not ask any questions. If you broke the rules, you didn’t love God. And I loved God, so I tried my hardest to follow the rules. And I thought less of those who didn’t. There was no grace. There was no mercy. In a few words, I was self-righteous and stuck up. The me of yesteryear would not like the present me. And honestly, the present me, doesn’t like the me of yesteryear.

But in college, I was on my own. I didn’t have anyone to tell me the rules anymore. So, I started to question them. I figured that if I was going to believe something and have it stick, I better figure out what I believe and why. I can remember having long, theological debates with a friend name Justin who would interrupt my thoughts as I sat in the chapel in the skyway at North Central. I can remember him challenging my rational on why I believed what I believed.

But it was in those quiet moments in that chapel – sometimes with friends, sometimes without – that I had a real encounter with Jesus. One that led me to realize that I was a slave to legalism when what Jesus came and died for was to give me freedom in Christ.

Now that we’ve got some years under our belt in ministry, we’ve had all kind of encounters with people in the church. We have regular contact with pastors all over the country (it’s amazing how small the world wide web makes the world). And the horror stories we could share based on what we’ve heard or even experienced (though ours really do pale in comparison to most) would make your head spin. There are people in the church who are so filled with hate and judgement and anger and well… SIN, that they can’t even see the Cross. They cause pain. They inflict disease. They are the bane of the pastor’s existence. They are often referred to in the circles that we travel in as pastor killers. Some churches are full of them. Some have few or possibly just one.

This morning, in the quiet of the sermon, my husband asked, “Where would you be without Jesus?”

And I had a moment.

I had an encounter.

Because I knew in my heart, that while I had never been far from church or God even really, had I not had a real, life-changing encounter with Jesus, I would be one of those self-righteous, know-it-all, busybody, thorn-in-the-side, pastor killers. And that stark realization dropped my heart into my stomach and made me so thankful that God redeemed me. That Jesus died for MY freedom. That Jesus set me free from the law and let’s me walk in grace.

What a wonderful and powerful gift.