Monday, June 24, 2013

Monday morsel: "every detail of our lives"

I've recently discovered a Christian blog called Not Alone: Where Special Parents Find Community.  I've been enjoying the posts I've read so far and will definitely be returning there to find insight and support for my calling as a parent of kids with special needs.

One recent post talked about the fruit of the Spirit as described in the book of Galatians in the Bible, and quoted a passage from the Message paraphrase.  I understood what the writer meant when she described these verses as a summary of how to parent "the special needs way" -- even though I realize it has a much broader application than that.  But especially I like the passage because it emphasizes the joy that life holds in spite of (even alongside) the challenges.  So I'm sharing it here as my quote for the week.

But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. ...

Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.

- Galatians 5:22-23, 25-26, The Message


  1. Those kid pics are awesome, and I can totally see how that passage applies to parenting, not only for kids with special needs but in general. For parents, so much of our day is spent in dealing with kids that it makes sense that this is where we can see the Spirit's fruit borne out.


    P.S. The Message can be effective in getting me to think of God's word with new understanding, but I find it helpful to follow up by going back to a true translation after reading the paraphrase. What's your take on that, Jeannie?

    1. I agree, Tim. There's a freshness and a different-ness to The Message that I often really enjoy (as in this case), but the NIV is usually my go-to translation to grasp the more accurate meaning. In our women's study at church we read from all different translations (we have some older women for whom the KJV is the ONLY right translation) and that's so interesting and rich to hear the different nuances.

      Speaking of translations, we have a friend at church who leads our music team. He is very funny -- doesn't try to be, just is. He was reading the day's scripture passage aloud during a service and was reading it off his tablet. I forget what the passage was (it must have said something about treasure), but he said his tablet suddenly switched to The Message version, and that version translated the word as "booty." So he read it -- and then he stopped and said, "BOOTY??!!" and everyone started laughing. So let that be a lesson to you not to read the Scripture passage off an electronic device: it might switch to the Message! :-)

    2. Booty would be the awesomest word for treasure back in my days as a youth leader!

  2. Living out life in the Spirit has so many perks! God is so good.

    This passage brings to mind something my mom often said: "We all may have different abilities and opportunities when it comes to building "successful" lives for ourselves here in the world, but in the Kingdom of God we ALL have an equal ability and opportunity to grow in character. And some who may seem unfortunate to the world are in fact superstars in the life of the Spirit" -- Or something like that. I hope I've captured what Mom always tried to get across! :)

    Love this quote. I'm not really familiar with the Message, but I do find paraphrases helpful sometimes!

    1. I like your mom's comment. World values vs. kingdom values. That's really important for us all to remember.


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