Saturday, October 27, 2007

Im his favorite...

Do you ever look at a beautiful sunset and feel as though God put that there just for you? Do you ever feel as though God loves you so much that he would do something just for you? I was reading the book "Having a Mary Spirit" by Joanna Weaver and she was talking about his very thing. How do we tap into Gods love and become so close to him that we feel confidently that we are his favorite? I want to be so close to God that I feel that way. And there have been brief moments where I really feel like that sunset was put there for my eyes and my heart only. If we all could feel so confident about God's love all the time, how much more could we love those around us. It has been said that you can't give what you don't have. But if I had a love that I was so confident about could I not just give it away like crazy. I wouldn't stop in the middle of doing something for someone and begin thinking about how I want someone to love me like this, or this isn't fair I want that, or why am I always doing things for people and no one ever does it for me. I would know that God does every day love me more than I could ever love anyone, I would see his work in every part of my life and I would be fully satisfied with his love for me that I could give with no abouds, love without fail. The encouraging part is that he does love us that much, and if we would only seek it every day with all of our hearts and CHOOSE to beleive that he does and he will always love us with the greatest love of all.

Is it okay to feel like Im God's favorite? I think so, especially if you all think that you are too.

The song that says it all "Amazing Grace" chains are gone, I've been set free. Ive been set free to live to and to love, to dance and to sing and to be the Lord's favorite. I needed to hear this song today and it just came on the radio. So I think I will go and sing in my opinion some of the most powerful words in my life.

Go today and relish in the fact that you are his favorite...and so am I:)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


God is so backwards. He does things so much differently than we do. His idea of truth is so far from ours. I'd go as far as to say that God is completely radical.

And it's awesome.

Try to catch some of the crazy claims that God makes: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him. If he is thirsty, give him something to drink (Romans 12:20)." Or try this one: "Blessed are the meek ('quiet, gentle, and easily imposed-on') for they will inherit the earth (Matt. 5:5)." Or what about this: "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all (Mark 9:35)."

It doesn't take long to see why so many of his peers thought Jesus was out of his mind. At the very least, these statements don't make any sense. Everyone knows that to win, you have to beat your enemy at his own game. And no one who is quiet and humble and turns the other cheek ever gains any power or influence. You have to fend for yourself. Look out for #1. Right?

Right. If you want power and influence and money for yourself, you have to put your best foot forward at all times. You have to be better, stronger, faster, smarter, always one step ahead of everyone else. But you know what? I (Mark) don't want any of that for myself. I did for a while. I wanted to be well-known and influential. I wanted to be respected. Honestly, for a while, I dreamed of MY name being known and talked about across the country, maybe even the world. Here's what changed my mind:

"Then what?"

What if I did succeed in being influential and well-known and respected? Then what? People for a few decades would remember the name Mark Potter. It wouldn't really matter or change anything other than a few pages in a history book, but it would fade and die. And that's not good enough for me. I want more meaning than that. Correction - I NEED more meaning than that. So then I started thinking about these maybe-not-quite-so-crazy statements of God.

What happens if I feed my enemies? As long as we are shooting back and forth at each other, he is getting what he wants - a fight, me being bothered and on the defensive. But if I "give in" and choose to love him instead, it's over and I've lost. But here's the clincher - LOVE HAS WON. And who is love? God is love.

What happens if I keep myself meek and humble? My name won't go into the history books. I won't make millions or hit the top of the charts with a platinum album. All I will do is display a quiet strength, a humble confidence that (believe it or not) people LIKE. People are attracted to others who are sure of who they are but not full of themselves. And so those around me will not necessarily notice me - they will notice something inside of me. And what is inside of me? God is inside of me.

And what happens if I put myself last? Well, before I am forced to start writing a second chapter for this blog-book, I'll just simply say that GOD BECOMES FIRST. And do you know what happens next? Other disciples of Jesus of Nazareth will also put themselves last, and GOD WILL AGAIN BECOME FIRST. And now we're getting somewhere. Before long, thousands and millions of disciples of this Jesus begin to put themselves last and God moves more and more to the forefront of history.

And GOD alone is glorified.

Now that's the kind of collosal cosmic purpose that I can devote myself to. That is the huge, earth-shattering mission that I will undertake. And in a nutshell, it's called turning the other cheek. Upside-down, isn't it?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

It's been a while....

Tonight has has a peace over it that I feel like we havnt felt in days. We just finished up dinner (I made chili...yumm) and we are both just sitting on the couch catching up on emails and other odds and ends. The house is relatively clean, laundry is in the process of getting done and we have both had productive days. The last two weeks have felt very chaotic and we have not exactly felt grounded so I think we are both appreciating this night together. I can't believe we have already completed our first two months of marriage. It has been amazing and challenging and I think we have both grown a lot. I'm so thankful for my husband and so thankful for the relationship we share. We are so thankful for our home, for our church and for our friends. Nights like this we can't help but praise God for who he is and all he has given us. Circumstances aren't always the way we would have them, life isn't always easy and we aren't always pain free but God is always good, he always loves us and he always provides for us and that makes life worth living.

Journey Church is going well. We are seeing new faces every week and we have had our first family that has never been to church commit to Journey church. It is exciting to see people taking their next steps in their walk of faith. Our relationships with the people here are growing deeper and every day we feel more and more at home. I personally have become to really connect with Erica the lead pastors wife and I am so thankful for her.

Mark and I are excited to begin saving for our one year anniversary. We decided that we would go somewhere to celebrate and get-away and spend a week together. There is one idea based on a friend here and his marriage but we dont have any plans yet just saving money. I am excited though.

We are super excited about the fall weather. Mark and I have both decided that this is our favorite season. We have pumpkin candles that we light and some fall decorations and we love cuddeling on the couch on cool fall night.

We will continue to enjoy this weather and hold our breath for the snow that Im sure is just around the corner.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Launch Day!

I can't believe its here. We launch on Sunday. The first day of a lifetime Journey. It truly is a dream come true. We love it here, we love the people, we love the passion, we love the church. God has blessed us. We have high expectations for Sunday but it isnt just about how many people walk through the door. Even if the same 70 people came and there was a not one new face it will be just as exciting. Because God has a plan and we trust that. The church will still launch with an awesome group of people we will still continue to grow and reach out into our community and lives will begin to transform and we will help people fin the way to a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Its our mission and we will accomplish it!

The worship band has been doing great. We have some very talented musicians and they all have huge hearts longing to worship the Lord. Mark has done an awesome job and every week is adding new elements of creativity to help people meet with God every Sunday. This is indeed right where God wants him. I led children's worship this week for the first time and it was a lot of fun. The kids loved and I felt very strongly that I was going what God wanted me to be doing. It was nice to be able to contibute to Jon's words "take what I have and give it away".

Beaners is getting better...not quite as stressful and not as tiring. It will though be nice when Mark and can devote more time to Journey and less to Beaners. And Im pretty sure that a barista is not my life time calling but for now it will more than be ok.

I really do love it here in Grand Rapids. I am so excited for the Holidays. Im anxious to decorate and make cards, to bake cookies and be with family and friends. And maybe just a little bit anxious for snow;)

I love you all and miss. Please pray for Journey on Sunday.
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