It is beautiful here in Oceanside California, a bit cool, but that’s okay. Yesterday my heart was absolutely delighted to watch my children loving playing in the sand.  Today a cold is keeping me out of the action, but that’s okay- it is interesting how perspective changes: I would have been so disappointed and annoyed to have a cold on vacation before. Now I am just happy to be able to be here even if I’m resting more, and I’m just grateful to not have a fever which would require medical assessment.

I love to be by water. Typically being at the lake is my favorite place to be. Of course I do love to be by the ocean as well, but I’ll admit that I’m more of a freshwater kinda girl.  This week, however,  being by the ocean has been powerfully therapeutic. I am taken by the ocean. It is captivating and it calls to me a reminder of God’s love. I keep hearing it, seeing it, feeling it: the call. The call to acknowledge Him: Creator God, Maker of heavens and this beautiful earth reflecting His glory.  And I hear it, see it and feel it: God’s love. Because God’s love is an ocean: vast, mighty, and beautiful.

And here I thank God for these moments to acknowledge His goodness and His greatness. And I pray that God’s love would wash over me and that it’s power would be unleashed within me.  I want to live changed. I want to catalyze change. And as Gandhi wrote, I want to be the change I long to see in the world.

I did not intend here to pull out my thoughts about the church, but i don’t see how I can leave them aside. These are some thoughts that have been pressed upon my heart:

We need to shake up this church, it’s become routine, this Sunday morning thing, but it is not intended to just be routine in our lives! It’s our very fuel and our purpose to love the church and LIVE as the church. We need to seek God with all our hearts so we find Him. I pray for our church to be empowered and to live boldly.

We can change the world! When and why did I stop believing this? I got busy, even in trying not to just live like everyone else, I was. But it is possible to be the change we want to see in the world. I want my kids to see that I live knowing I can change the world so they too will use their lives to also. We are the church! We are backed by a Powerhouse ready to pour out a flood of love that changes everything. We don’t need to be equipped and ready, we need to move! We need to move our mouths to put out love from our lips. We need to move our hands to hug and touch and do that what needs to be done to show humanity her beauty in Christ’s image. We need to move our feet to go when we are called, where we are called. We need to move the fear aside. We need to usher in the hope. We need to BE the church, everyday in all circumstances. Oh this is hard, because life gets hard. But the one who raised Christ from the dead lives within us! I pray the church would rise up to really show what God’s glory is all about. Likewise I pray to God:  empower me to live boldly for You. God open my eyes to those who need Your love flowing through me. God your love is an ocean: vast powerful and beautiful. Unleash it in my life. Empower me to live changed, to catalyze change, and be the change I want to see around me.

I’ll admit that the reason I did not intend to share these thoughts and prayers for the church is because I’m not sure how well I’m doing in this area. But, let me tell you it is my plan to seek God and find Him as I seek Him with ALL my heart. Cancer woke up my soul to REALLY seek God; yet, it still amazes me how quickly I am distracted. I am an imperfect human writing about concepts I am FAR from perfecting. But I am reminded in I Peter 4:8 that love covers over a multitude of sin. And I am reminded  in Matthew 22 of the great Commandments to love my God with all my heart and soul and mind. And to love my neighbor as myself. So I will press into these and keep praying and keep seeking and keep asking God to open my eyes to His vast, mighty, and beautiful ocean of love.