5.30.2007

definition.


i've been having the conversation about identity, what it is that defines us, with a lot of friends lately. it seems that everyone is stuck in the battle of self-discovery.

i·den·ti·ty (ī-děn'tĭ-tē) (n.) = the collective aspect of the set of characteristics by which a thing is definitively recognizable or known

what am i recoginized as? what am i known by?
is it my new jobs? is it my former role of full-time ministry? is it my friends and the groups i run with? is it my cool new condo? is it being a new resident of nashville?
no. none of these define me.

(i ran across a sermon from john piper on this...a lot of my thoughts below stem from His wisdom and insight.)

BUT YOU ARE A CHOSEN RACE, A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR GOD'S OWN POSSESSION, THAT YOU MAY PROCLAIM THE EXCELLENCIES OF HIM WHO HAS CALLED YOU OUT OF DARKNESS INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT; FOR YOU ONCE WERE NOT A PEOPLE, BUT NOW YOU ARE THE PEOPLE OF GOD; YOU HAD NOT RECEIVED MERCY, BUT NOW YOU HAVE RECEIVED MERCY. 1 Peter 2:9-10

i am "a chosen race"...that is my first identity. chosen, not because of any qualification, not because of anything i have done or earned...but just because of God's mercy.

i am "God's possession"...who He will walk among and reveal Himself to in a personal relation forever...my identiy is that i am His.

i am "a holy nation"...i exist for God, and since He is holy, i am holy. i share His character, because He chose me, possessed me. i am holy, and if i do not act in a holy way, i act out of character. my identity is holiness to the Lord.

i am "a royal priesthood"...i have direct access to God, thru God, and an active role in God's presence...answering the question of identity ["who am i?"] leads directly to the question of destiny ["what am i here for"]
i am chosen, possessed, holy - all for a purpose - to minister as a priest.

HOW? "Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light." ...God called me...out of darkness...into this marvelous light...God gave us the identity we have. who i am in Christ is not defined in terms of who i am in and of myself...it's defined in terms of what God does to me and the relationship He creates with me and the destiny He appoints for me.

WHO AM I? i am a God-chosen one. i am a God-possessed one. i am a God-sanctified one. and this is not an end in and of itself...but for the sake of proclaiming the excellency of His freedom and grace in choosing me...of His authority and power in possessing me...of His worth and purity in making me holy.

He gave ME identity so that HIS identity might be proclaimed through me.


God made us who we are to show the world who He is.
THAT is who we are. THAT is what defines us.

5.22.2007

j-o-b. (PART TWO!!!)


ok, so i am freaking out. God is being SO gracious to me, it's just insane. i think "random" should be my middle name (especially since i don't have one to begin with)...but i've added on ANOTHER job. i'm going to be working with AFRICAN LEADERSHIP/MOCHA CLUB part-time. i am so ecstatic about this opportunity, i can't even contain myself! :) i think i have a previous blog somewhere about mocha club and the awesome things it is doing to help out africa. but check out MOCHA CLUB and AFRICAN LEADERSHIP for an idea.
i just continue to be amazed at God's provision, and how He is working everything together for good.
and I LOVE NASHVILLE...every day i love it more...seriously.

also, check out the most current african leadership endeavor, ELLIE'S RUN

5.12.2007

j-o-b.

I'VE GOT A JOB!!! YAY!!!
and for the record, i hate decisions...i had 2 really great options ahead of me - both of which were totally orchestrated by God - but i'm thankful God made things super clear for me, and i'm really excited about this...
so i'm going to be working w/ this AMAZING family downtown, doing some random stuff w/ them for the first few months (they have a restaurant, coffeeshop, and financial group that includes insurance, mortgage, etc.) and then, if all goes well, i'm going to become the director of their non-profit, the signal hill foundation. it's SO awesome how God is lining this up w/ my vision for moving here... it's a sweet family - mom and dad, and 3 sons & their wives all working together, living downtown, etc...and their vision is to be excellent w/ all of their business endeavors, and to use them to fund a non-profit that will be able to minister to the city of Nashville. and basically i get the amazing job of dreaming and envisioning how that will look, and then administrating it. right now i'll do some odds & ends jobs, and work a lot in the coffeeshop to get things going, and then ease my way into planning events for the foundation. how PERFECT is this for me? God is so good. AND, and i get to pray and seek what HE wants for this city, and how we can be a part of it. i'm a little intimidated by the responsibility of this role, and of course starting new things is always scary, but i'm claiming the truth that the Lord won't give me more than i can handle. it's just so affirming to see Him working things out for me so quickly, and assuring me that He wants to use me for BIG THINGS here in Nashville.
i'll keep you posted...
check out an article @ the family here: smith family article
the restaurant: the standard

ps LOVING where i live..walking to the park, to the little natural food store, to restaurants/coffee, etc...and meeting my great neighbors...it's so fun!!

5.09.2007

home sweet home (so far.)

well...i'm here. nashville is now my home.
since my mom and i arrived monday, our time has been consumed with unloading and unpacking, hauling and hanging, ordering and organzing (which we both love). but now i'm ready to just stop and sit and let it sink in that i just moved to another state!! i drove my mom to the airport (she had to fly back because she drove the huge rented moving truck here!) and now i've walked down the street from my condo to the local coffee shop, taking in the "east nashville" scene.
i have a feeling i'm gonna love this place.

p.s. i'm nailing down job stuff - i have 2 interviews this week. i should know something for sure in the next few days...it's so fun to watch the Lord provide EXACTLY what we need (and know that i have no control over any of it) more updates on that soon.

a lot of people have been asking for pictures, so i've put up a few for now...