{Shine}

What light is a candle on a bright summer day?

Steve and I often discuss Christianity, church life, what it means to live as Jesus taught us.  Living in a large Mennonite community is a comfortable place to be, but is it really what God had in mind when he designed the concept of church?  Are we being as effective as we should be in reaching out?

Moving out, reaching out to an area that is not saturated with Christianity is one way that we can more easily spread God’s message of redemption.  One of my fears is that even in a new setting we will sink into a comfortable life instead of focusing on outreach.

Right now there are so many opportunities that I can see around me.  My struggle is finding ways that I can reach out as a mom with two young children.  While I don’t want to rest in this fact alone, I do know that simply living a God-honoring life is a testimony.

One evening, I had taken the boys on a walk.  Zachary had taken “Baby” with us and was giving him a piggy-back ride like his daddy gives him.  When we got back, I was snapping pictures of the boys, and one of our neighbors walked over to say, “It is so good to see someone taking pictures.  You bring so much positive energy to our neighborhood.  I like to see that.  Thank you so much.  We need more positive energy here.  It’s good to see someone taking pictures.”

Taking pictures?!  Wow, I had no idea that’s a big deal…until I started thinking.  I take pictures to remember things I love–a new accomplishment,  the bond between father and son, a happy smile, good times with friends.   When there is brokenness, anger, distrust, hopelessness–people want to forget.  When there is love, closeness, joy–we want to remember.  We photograph.

So, yes, even something as small as taking snapshots of my sons is a testimony of what God has done in my heart.  In a community where 99% of children live with single mothers, the very fact that we are a two-parent, well-functioning family is evidence that He is still at work in our lives.

On a dark night, a candle shines brightly.

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12 thoughts on “{Shine}”

  1. Wow, what a surprising but beautiful perspective. And what a neat gift from God that He let you know how you are impacting your community – not through big “ministry” things, but just by loving your family in everyday life. I think about you often!

  2. Christy, I was so blessed reading your story! There are so many hurting people in our cities. God bless you for your willingness to reach out them. Keep on caring and loving as Jesus would… as you live your life may many more people be encouraged by it!
    I’ll be praying for you. I’d love to be on your prayer list… cindiah81@gmail.com
    Cindi

  3. How tempting it is for life to become routine, some days so mundane, then beginning to wonder what I’m really doing to reach the lost. We were challenged this spring to invite someone new (just ran into) from our community (ahh!! – a lil scary) into our home once a week. To often I have given in to fear – what if they come back in the middle of the night begging and crying from 10$ – shaking violently from an overdose) God bless you there in your great work of sharing Christ. Was nice to come and see a little bit of whats happening in Atlanta. – Jan

  4. yes, Christy~sometimes we want to do BIG things, but God often has “little” things for us moms to do! =)

  5. Tears and smiles. So much truth in what you write. Can you add me to your email list?
    Blessings and love, Kim

  6. Just came across your blog here… its amazing how God worked everything out for you to move to Atlanta! God bless y’all!

  7. I think that’s where it’s at…..in the little things!
    …a cup of water
    …a smile
    …a hug
    …a listening ear – not worrying about giving “answers”, but rather just listening.
    You’ll find your way. It sounds like you’re on the right track!
    {{{{hugs}}}}

  8. I suddenly have tears in my eyes. Thank you for the reminder that the small things can speak loudly, or rather, shine brightly. I needed that.

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