To say the celebration of Christmas has become part of a secularized marketing juggernaut should not surprise anyone. From the middle of October through the end of the year, people are subjected to an increased and intense campaign to spend money. Our secular culture is an economic one, and consumer spending is the largest piece of the economic engine that drives it.
“The More I Seek You” by Steffany Gretzinger has been a beloved song for a while. Recently, as I’ve started to learn more about the feminine/mothering Heart of God this has taken on a deeper and more vulnerable meaning for me. When I let this song wash over me I am often taken to a place where I sit on the lap of God as Mama and receive unconditional love like I’ve never known. This version with Jeremy Riddle is especially effective at opening me to that place in my own heart where I can receive.
Before the True Pursuit weekend, my husband and I had what you would call a good marriage. We loved each other and worked well as a team but we both knew something was missing. He struggled to lead and I felt pressure to be everything to him and our kids. Neither one of us had any kind of guidance in our lives. Flying blind would be the best way to describe it! When he went to the weekend I had no high hopes of anything special.
I used to like to watch the TV show “Whose Line Is It Anyway” hosted by Drew Carey. The show consisted of a panel of three or four performers who create characters, scenes and songs on the spot, in the style of short-form improvisation games. Topics for the games were based on either audience suggestions or predetermined prompts from the host. While sometimes a little coarse, watching the performers act out different situations on impulse was hilarious.
I am convinced that the story of our childhood determines who we are as adults. As I have said many times before, none of us got through life without being wounded by our parents, siblings, teachers, coaches and so on. None of those people who influenced our lives as children were perfect. No, they had their own stories of brokenness that they were living out of.
Like so many of Steffany’s worship songs the lyrics and melody are so honest and raw they are almost haunting. The first words grip me. Because of multiple layers of shame we hide and so often live with the bondage. We long for rescue. The God of unfailing kindness simply says, “Come out of hiding you’re safe here with me.”
Aaron describes the impact that the True Pursuit weekend has had on his life.
What keeps us from fully embracing the idea that we have an all-powerful, creator God who will stop at nothing to capture our hearts?
Yes, it’s true we’ve bought into the lies of the enemy and signed up for agreements for things that are not true. Yet, something more is at play . . .
Solitude is an integral part of the spiritual life. Unfortunately, like many of the great Christian traditions, the art of solitude has been lost for most Christians. The True Pursuit Team sheds light on why solitude is so important, what it does for our relationship with God and practical ways in which we can practice solitude in our everyday lives.