Friday, September 07, 2007

Friday Five from RevGalBlogPals

Friday 5 - on overcoming

posted by Sallay

I am preparing this Friday 5 just before I take Chris into hospital for a cardioversion, right now we are all a little apprehensive. But this whole thing has got me thinking, so many of us are overcomers in one way or anoither, so many have amazing stories to tell of God's faithfulness in adversity. And so I bring you this Friday 5;

1.Have you experienced God's faithfulness at a difficult time? Tell as much or as little as you like...
I experienced God's faithfulness several times in helping me deal with situations where I was not allowed to be "the minister" by the church I served.

2. Have you experienced a dark night of the soul, if so what brought you through?
There have been more than one dark nights and it was the community of faith sometimes as individuals and sometimes as a group that brought me through. There were "God with skin on" for me.

3. Share a Bible verse, song, poem that has brought you comfort?

When there were problems with my pregnancies, it was Psalm 139. When it was the church limiting my ministry, it was "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you." Isaiah 43:1-3

And Ginny Owens song "If you want me to." The version on "A Night in Rocketown " is the best. You can hear the first minute here Here's all of the lyrics:

The pathway is broken
And the signs are unclear
And I don't know the reason why You brought me here
But just because You love me the way that You do

I'm gonna walk through the valley
If You want me to

No I'm not who I was
When I took my first step
And I'm clinging to the promise You're not through with me yet
So if all of these trials bring me closer to You
Then I will go through the fire
If You want me to

It may not be the way I would have chosen
When You lead me through a world that's not my home
But You never said it would be easy
You only said I'll never go alone

So when the whole world turns against me
And I'm all by myself
And I can't hear You answer my cries for help
I'll remember the suffering Your love put You through
And I will go through the darkness
If You want me to

When I cross over Jordan, I'm gonna sing, gonna shout
Gonna look into your eyes and see you never let me down
So take me on the pathway that leads me home to you
And I will walk through the valley if you want me to

Yes, I will walk through the valley if you want me to

4. Is "why suffering" a valid question?
Absolutely. God can handle it. And we can have a deeper relationship with God when we are free to express everything. If we can't tell God or if there are certain "forbidden" questions, we lose out on the richness of having a God who loves every part of us -- even (maybe particularly) the parts we think aren't good enough for God.

5. And on a lighter note- you have reached the end of a dark and difficult time- how are you going to celebrate?
This is probably the hardest question for me. All too often the end of hard times is such a relief that, even though I love people and I love to celebrate, I don't have the energy to celebrate until much later. It usually becomes a celebration after there is enough distance from it for there to be scars instead of scabs. As I'm thinking about this, the celebration is probably in a better ability to "be there" with others.

Bonus- anything you wish to add....
The God who brings you to it will bring you through it.


Hot Cup Lutheran said...

Ginny Owens... yes i love that song. lost the cd so i hadn't thought of it in a while...but have cried several times to it...sung with it... you have impeccable taste!

Serena said...

Amen to # 4... and "the God who brings you to it will bring you through it."

revabi said...

Vicar how well said. So awesome that even when others don't let you minister God is ministering to you. And that you went through trouble during your pregnancy.

Ginny Owens came and sang that song at the Festival Homiletics this year. I doubt very many there knew who she was or what she was singing. I often find myself singing the words. Thanks for sharing all this about you and your faith in God during your dark nights of the soul.

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