For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Something Different

One of the things we really loved about the RCIA class was our group. During lectio divina, which was the meditation on scripture, we all took time to read the scripture--some people read it days earlier and meditated on it all week--and then we discussed how the Spirit was engaging each of us. We enjoyed listening and talking, hearing folks' lives, being part of a group. We all agreed we were going to seriously miss that, and we joked about finding a church that actually did church like that.

Yesterday morning, my friend Heather Brizzi and I spent 5 hours on the phone talking God, sharing hearts, being real. THAT was good church, and I told her that we were once again kind of lost with the whole church thing, and by the way, where did she go to church? She attends Evangelical Presbyterian. I had never heard of it, but I have heard her talk about her church a lot, and she likes it. It feeds her, so I did a google search and found one about 45 minutes from our house.

Not thrilled with the 45 minutes, and I was trying to talk myself out of it this morning, despite having taken a shower and already put on my makeup, when I found myself standing in WonderBoy's room asking, "Do you want to go to church with me?"

He really didn't. He was tired from being up late not feeling well, and he really wanted to sleep in, but he said, "Sure." So we went.

At 10:30 this morning we pulled up to the place our GPS said was our destination and the house. I got back online and googled again. There were multiple addresses and times and a lot of not-really-clear, so I tried to call the number but got a recording. WonderBoy and I were sitting there talking about whether to stay or go because who walks up to a house door and asks if that is the church?, when a car drove up and someone started unloading folding chairs. We decided we were at the right address. So, we stayed.

I've been to house churches before. They are groovy. No problem.

Except this isn't a house church. It is a full-blown church that is meeting at multiple houses right now due to the lease on their building running out and no new door opening yet. The church has split up into groups of 20-25 that meet at different times during the week. This group happens to meet on Sunday morning.

This group also happens to have church sitting around a table, sharing a meal, worshiping with different kinds of music (today was hymns we knew! Yay!), and studying the Bible together. Before the Bible study, they light a candle in recognition of the presence of God. During the Bible study, we all had the freedom to share our thoughts and how it applied to us, and once that Bible study was over, we celebrated Eucharist. In unity, we prayed a prayer for the Lord to turn the elements into the manifestation of Christ and for us to partake of Him in His fullness. Then one person held the bread to the person beside him and said, "This is the body of Christ given for you." The person took the bread and dipped it into the cup of wine while the first person said, "This is the blood of Christ shed for you." We all end in a grace prayer in which we bless each other for the coming week.

Not sure how it will look when there is a building again, but for today, it was really neat, and it looked a lot more like the Acts New Testament church than anything I've experienced, and I definitely got some ideas on how a "community" gathering would look. It was good stuff.

I hope your day at church was good, too. I hope your spirit was fed and the Spirit was free to speak what you need to hear. And I pray as you go into the week, the food you received sustains you to do the will of God and serve Him in the fullness of Christ.


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