Sunday, July 5, 2009

Gateway Week 1

I know this post is a little overdue, but I thought I'd post a few highlights of the things I am learning at Gateway. Our days are so intense that it's hard to compile everything into a few sentences, but I'll do my best.

We began our training by creating a list of expectations for the month. My expectations...
  1. God will reveal His character and nature and correct any inaccurate views that I hold.
  2. God will enable me to grow in faith, trust, and love.
  3. Relationships will be built with others serving with Mercy Ships.
  4. I will have a greater understanding of working with the poor.
  5. God will transform head knowledge into heart knowledge.

What's in a Name?

I used to think of God's name as synonymous with His reputation. We tend to use phrases like "she destroyed her good name" and "his name is mud" to refer to someone's name as his/her reputation only. We are so focused on what other people think that sometimes we put more emphasis on our reputation than our true character. God is not like us; He is loving and compassionate because that is who He is! When Scripture speaks of His name, it is more than just His reputation--it is His very nature and character. Doesn't that make such a difference in verses like this?

"For the sake of my name I delay my wrath." Isaiah 48:9

"He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name's sake." Psalm 23:3

Who am I?

We took a DISC personality inventory to discover our own strengths and weaknesses. I am a CS (C-Conscientous, S-Steady). Instead of boring you with the details of my personality, I'd love to share a quote that really made me think: "Teams are well-rounded precisely because the individuals in them are not." Hmmm...kind of goes along with 1 Corinthians 12, doesn't it?

"Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be." 1 Corinthians 12:14-18

Silent Retreat

Last Saturday we went to a nearby state park to spend some focused individual time with the Lord. Of course, much of my time was spent praying about the situation with the condo and asking God to show me what to do if a renter has not come by departure day. I didn't get a direct answer at the retreat, but when I got home, I was completely taken aback by an email I had received around the time the retreat ended. My friend Joy wrote that she didn't understand why she felt so strongly in saying this, but she thought she should tell me not to let the condo keep me from purchasing my airline ticket. She reminded me of God's timing and provision, and she thought that if it is not His will for me to go, He would probably confirm it in a different way. Wow. Sometimes God speaks in a still small voice, and sometimes He sends emails. :)

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