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Quotes from Lunchtime Conversations


So my favorite person in the Bible is John Mark, and that’s probably because I feel like him and I are the same person. Here’s a little of what one of my biblical commentaries has to say about him:

“Mistakes are effective teachers. Their consequences have a way of making lessons painfully clear. But those who learn from their mistakes are likely to develop wisdom. John Mark was a good learner who just needed some time and encouragement. He was eager to do the right thing, but he had trouble staying on task. In his Gospel, Mark mentions a young man (probably himself) who fled in such fear during Jesus’ arrest that he left his clothes behind.”

So we’ve got this young dude, he freaks out at the crucifixion (I mean, who wouldn’t), his mom hosts the original church in their home, he sees radical things happen, gets to hang out with three of the most influential people in history, gets discipled by Peter (you know, the “rock” of the church), and one day he’s invited by Paul and Barnabas to go on a missionary journey.

I mean, Paul and Barnabas are making history; it would have been a silly opportunity to miss. So John Mark goes out with them, hangs out in a few countries, sees a couple miracles, witnesses the power and experiences the providence of God, and for whatever reason John Mark is like, “No, I know this is only the second stop, but I’m gonna go home. (Acts 13:13)” Paul wasn’t stoked about this.

The Bible doesn’t give us much of an explanation, but I like to think that our good friend was full of fear. Fear of what? Ionno. Maybe something was going on at home? Maybe he was afraid he’d mess up the trip if he kept on? Maybe he was afraid of hanging out in cultures way different from his hometown? Maybe he was afraid he wasn’t smart enough? Maybe he was afraid that he couldn’t do what God had called him to? Maybe he was missing some really cool event at home? Maybe he was afraid he couldn’t communicate the gospel properly, and let down all the people he met?

My guess though, is that John Mark was afraid he couldn’t be infinite. He couldn’t be infinitely wise, nor helpful, nor present, nor interesting, nor sustaining, and he was letting himself be stretched everywhere. He found himself wayyy too far from home, only to come to the realization that he couldn’t do it all. He couldn’t be everywhere. He couldn’t do everything. He couldn’t please all the people. He let his heart get pulled every which direction until it was completely stationary. He let his fear of his limited existence, limit his existence.

This never meant much to me until the other day when a friend told me, “apathy’s alright sometimes because you can’t care about everything.” It struck me because I couldn’t decide if I thought it was true or not, at least, I certainly didn’t want it to be true. I’ve lived my life convinced I can handle it all, convinced I could practically meet the needs of all my friends and family members, convinced I could serve my community at church, in my town, at my school, and cross-culturally, and that I could pray fervently for every broken thing in this oh so broken world.

See the thing with a perception like that is I’ll always let myself and other people down. It’s inevitable. I’m not infinite. I can’t properly care for everything that ever happened to anyone. I just cannot love like that. But I think I, and a lot of people, let ourselves believe that we can and hold ourselves to that standard. And that doesn’t do anything but fill us with guilt and frustration.

But our God, who is perfect love, can love infinitely. He can be infinitely wise, helpful, present, interesting, and sustaining. He can be stretch every which way. He’s God. We’re not. But, He invites us to be a part of His big God body, to be an ever so, seemingly insignificant part of a magnificent whole, He invites us to play our part and gives us the power to do so.

I think, our slow to learn friend, Mark, figured this out. Paul, who was at one point so disappointed and frustrated with him, refused to let him come on the second missionary journey and had a brief falling out with Barnabas over it (Acts 15.36-40). But somewhere Mark got it, somewhere Mark found his niche and went with it, because we read in Colossians that Mark was with Paul in prison and when he was writing to Philemon. We read in 2 Timothy, as Paul awaits his impending execution, him ask for mark because he’s been helpful to Paul in his ministry.

So maybe all He wants from our finite existence is for us to realize that we can’t play the leading role of this story, and gives us the freedom to realize the best part we can.

My Name is Eustace

So my first year of college, I lived in a dorm hall filled with a beautiful assortment of academically driven females. I came to know many of them quite well, and we learned the strangest things about each other. We all came from different religious, ethnic, familial, and whatever else backgrounds, which meant we did a lot of little things in our day to day lives a little differently.

One of those things was showering. There were two ladies who lived with me who thought it was incredibly strange that Americans took hot showers. Many of us came back with our retorts of how hot water cleans better, and it being more comforting, and whatever else we valued so much about our hygienic ritual. They countered with its being better for your skin, refreshing, and whatever else they too valued. It was all really fun and silly, but a conversation I’ve held quite valuable nevertheless.

I remember them telling us that we should at least rinse our hair and body with cold water after cleaning. They promised it would make it much healthier and softer, that it would make us feel as if we’d literally stepped into new skin, and who wouldn’t be all over that?

I so vividly remember the first trial run. It was probably late November based on how cold I remember the bathroom that hadn’t been renovated since the 1950’s being that night. I’d found refuge in the warmth of the shower’s water. I got myself all scrubbed up with all the day’s dirt exposed and prepared to be rinsed away. I rotated our ancient, squeaky shower knob clockwise as far as I could without killing the water supply, and was bombarded by what I was sure to be Niagara Falls itself. I’d been caught completely off-guard. My whole body went into shock as it took on the shards of ice. I felt like I couldn’t breathe, everything in me had become very tense until I felt like I’d resurfaced and desperately gasped for air.

I rinsed myself as quickly as possible, seized my robe and stood shivering wondering how on earth my friends could ever find that experience refreshing. But as I stood reflecting on the experience, I realized I really did feel like I’d put new skin on. Like all the nonsense I’d collected from the day was rinsed off as aggressively as it needed to be to make a difference.

I’ve gotten into the habit of ending my showers on the coldest setting our water will allow. I like to think about what exactly it is from the day that I’m washing off and welcome the rinsing away with hopes of actually moving forward. When I’m not feeling so complacent as I’m so prone to being, I like think of Eustace from C.S. Lewis’ Voyage of the Dawn Treader, about how his being a big brat got him stuck into the skin of a dragon and how much pain that’d caused him. I like to think that Aslan’s calling out in his ever so silent voice, “Follow me.”

"I looked up and saw the very last thing I expected: a huge lion coming slowly toward me. And one queer thing was that there was no moon last night, but there was moonlight where the lion was. So it came nearer and nearer. I was terribly afraid of it. You may think that, being a dragon, I could have knocked any lion out easily enough. But it wasn’t that kind of fear. I wasn’t afraid of it eating me, I was just afraid of it — if you can understand. Well, it came close up to me and looked straight into my eyes. And I shut my eyes tight. But that wasn’t any good because it told me to follow it."

"You mean it spoke?"

"I don’t know. Now that you mention it, I don’t think it did. But it told me all the same. And I knew I’d have to do what it told me, so I got up and followed it. And it led me a long way into the mountains. And there was always this moonlight over and round the lion wherever we went. So at last when we came to the top of a mountain I’d never seen before and on the top of this mountain there was a garden - trees and fruit and everything. In the middle of it there was a well… .

"Then the lion said — but I don’t know if it spoke — ‘You will have to let me undress you.’ I was afraid of his claws, I can tell you, but I was pretty nearly desperate now. So I just lay flat down on my back to let him do it.

"The very first tear he made was so deep that I thought it had gone right into my heart. And when he began pulling the skin off, it hurt worse than anything I’ve ever felt. The only thing that made me able to bear it was just the pleasure of feeling the stuff peel off. You know — if you’ve ever picked the scab off a sore place. It hurts like billy — oh but it is such fun to see it coming away."

"I know exactly what you mean," said Edmund.

"Well, he peeled the beastly stuff right off — just as I thought I’d done it myself the other three times, only they hadn’t hurt — and there it was lying on the grass: only ever so much thicker, and darker, and more knobly-looking than the others had been. And there was I as smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been. Then he caught hold of me — I didn’t like that much for I was very tender underneath now that I’d no skin on — and threw me into the water. It smarted like anything but only for a moment. After that it became perfectly delicious and as soon as I started swimming and splashing I found that all the pain had gone from my arm. And then I saw why. I’d turned into a boy again."

When I was little, my siblings and I used to get in really awful fights, like all the time. We’d gotten so used to our clashed mentalities that we’d just pick fights over nothing. I mean, we could argue about the number of stars in the sky for an hour. No one wins in that!

It got to a point where conversation was a sport. No matter what, an offensive and a defensive party were present, and never static. Confrontation was impossible. Edification was a foreign concept… Praise God we grew out of that. Well, kinda.

A friend of mine posted this shirt on my Facebook wall yesterday and I thought it was hilarious for a while, and then I just found it thought provoking.

Proverbs 9:7-9 reads this:

Whoever corrects a scoffer gets himself abuse,
   and he who reproves a wicked man incurs injury.
Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you;
   reprove a wise man, and he will love you.
Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;
   teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.

In my head for a long time I thought, with the power of the Holy Spirit, that I was the wise man. I thought I could take on these corrections and reproves like a big kid and welcomed them. But somewhere in the mix of things my pride got in the way and I reverted back to my childhood ways.

I’ve found myself in conversation with people I love trying to make it a sport with the mindset of winning. That ain’t right. In my head I’ve done nothing wrong, or my actions can be justified, or the other person has unrealistic expectations of me, and I’ve harped on those thoughts in and out of conversation all too much.

And that’s crippling.

Who cares who’s right? Why should I care if the other person thinks I’m right? And why am I denying the possibility that I could be wrong? Jesus, the omniscient, righteous God in the flesh took the junk scoffers were throwing at Him in the resurrection scene like a champ. He wasn’t whining or arguing, He just laid down His pride and took it, because he wasn’t worried about Himself or His view, He came to the situation in hopes of loving this crowd and loving them well.

So what’s my problem?

For a couple weeks I’ve been struggling because I know God loves me, but I couldn’t feel it. Or at least, I felt like I couldn’t be an instrument of it. I haven’t been loving much of anybody well. It’s like I can be loved all I want, but if it stops at me it gets moldy and gross and nobody wants to be around that. And what kind of affront is it to God to let His love rot?

So my new challenge is to grab my Biblical Clorox and let Him replace the grimy desires of this flesh. But mainly, just to get over myself.

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
1 John 2:15-17 
This is my new friend Frodo, him and I get along quite well.


"I can’t do this, Sam."

"I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something."

"What are we holding onto, Sam?"

"That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”

So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info
So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info
So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info
So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info
So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info
So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff. 

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves. 

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly. 

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.
Zoom Info

So when I come back to real life at school, my part-time job is setting up events at the university I attend. Some of the events are regular club meetings, others are huge fundraisers, others are famous speakers, others are random yoga breaks for the professional staff.

There are probably about 30 spaces around grounds that my coworkers and I are responsible for sneaking into in between events and reinventing the space. We pick up random trash and forgotten items, we set out or put away hundreds of chairs, tables, podiums, wires, stages, projectors, speakers, microphones, easels, wall-dividers, coat racks, and stanchions (what’s that?), we lock this and unlock that, we open these and close those, all while playing and dancing with coworkers most of the time… Sometimes I feel like we’re actually Christmas elves.

My coworkers and I often lose sight of this, but these events are incredibly important to people, and when we’ve done our jobs correctly, almost no one knows we even exist, but when we mess up (or someone else does) we get angry phone calls and visitors and told that we’ve basically ruined their lives. All because the stage was set improperly.

Over the past year I’ve come to the acceptance that sometimes life just gives you a beating, and things don’t go as planned… Yeah, there’s truth to that, but that doesn’t mean you accept it as a lifestyle. We’re called to fight the way of this world, to lay our foundations in Christ, in prayer, and the Word, and fellowship, and hope with your life that things work out for the best… because we’re told it will (Romans 8:28).

Sure, I can’t control what the actors do, or what lines they say, or where exactly the plot goes, but, hey, I can set the stage, and that apparently ruins lives when done incorrectly.

Quote Juxtaposition

So I heard this quote from Flannery O’Conner this morning.
"All human nature vigorously resists grace because grace changes us and the change is painful."

And this quote on Grey’s Anatomy this evening.

"When we say things like "people don’t change" it drives scientist crazy because change is literally the only constant in all of science. Energy. Matter. It’s always changing, morphing, merging, growing, dying. It’s the way people try not to change that’s unnatural. The way we cling to what things were instead of letting things be what they are. The way we cling to old memories instead of forming new ones. The way we insist on believing despite every scientific indication that anything in this lifetime is permanent. Change is constant. How we experience change that’s up to us. It can feel like death or it can feel like a second chance at life. If we open our fingers, loosen our grips, go with it, it can feel like pure adrenaline. Like at any moment we can have another chance at life. Like at any moment, we can be born all over again."

And that’s about all I have to say about that.

So I’m basically the worst gardener.

My mother and grandmother, however, put together these gardens bursting with gorgeous flowers and fragrances like it’s their job. They’ve mastered the craft so that you never find a day in the year where something isn’t in bloom. In the summer and through the fall I was sent out to pick herbs and vegetables for dinner. For most any major event or even simply visiting someone for the first time in a while, it was customary to show up with a freshly picked bouquet from the yard. You didn’t enter the house without a the sweet symphony of hummingbirds, bees of all varieties, and intricately decorated beetles who never missed a beat in the air around the house.

The gardens were glorious.

I was never given much power or say in them though. I’d plant something and surely it would die. I’d trim something and it would die. I’d move something and it would die.

My role in keeping the garden was dealing with the weeds and watering the plants. So many of my childhood Saturdays were spent filling up wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of invasive, unwanted plants. And so many dusks were spent with a hose around the house. If I didn’t, the beauty would quickly fade.

When I moved into my first house during college, I knew it wouldn’t feel like home unless it was surrounded by vibrant colors and fabulous scents. I spent my waitress tips on flowers from the farmer’s market, planted them, tried to nurture some in pots, watered them every day in the hot, hot heat. Drunk boys in the mask of night slowly pilfered my pots, rabbits ate every bloom I got, and what was left was shriveled up by the average 102°F of blistering heat we experienced for the summer.

I felt pretty defeated.

Now all of this is coming to mind because I spent the evening weeding a friend’s garden the other day. Beautiful trees and bushes were completely strangled by thorny vines. Fun flowers were drowned out by the stringy weeds growing within them. The welcoming brick path was overwhelmed by moss and clovers. So much time and effort was spent growing and caring for all these plants and in what seemed like overnight, it was besieged by these parasitic plants.

On my hands and knees in the stickiness of Virginian summer humidity, I set out on my task. With diligence the brick path was cleared. After fighting the prickly vines, they slowly unraveled from the bushes and trees. In patience, the flowers were given space to breathe again.

In my sweatiness and briar scrapedness, I remembered that gardening is hard work.

I thought about my main man Jesus saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches. (Matthew 13:31-32)” Sure, that sounds all good and well and happy ever aftery, but in reality, it means that growing heaven is hard.

I don’t know if any of you have ever grown a tree, but let me tell you, those don’t just pop up over night. They’re like caring for a whiny, needy infant – especially that tiny little mustard seed – protecting them from the environment, bugs, weeds, and whatever else the world throws at it. And it’s not like Jesus didn’t know that, I mean, He’s God. He was there slapping His face when He had to tell Adam that the ground was now corrupt because of him. That he’d have to work through blood, sweat, and tears to produce thorny, thistly fields of food that in pain he’d eat from (Genesis 3:17-19).

John Mark McMillan describes the earth as being uncontrollably hungry in its corruption, crying out for blood, ravenous for the “souls of men she craved,” that it remained unsatisfied until quenched by blood of Jesus. He literally laid death in his grave.

So I’ve got all this going on in my head while I’m working in my friend’s yard, staring at all this unsatisfied earth and I’m like, what on earth are we feeding this?!

We’re supposed be growing our mustard tree heaven, and the only way to do it is feed our corrupted earth the pureness of Christ, and instead? We throw our pride, and anxiety, and hate, and ignorance, and laziness and whatever at it and wonder why all we get is this weedy, thistly, dead brokenness.

What if we all laid ourselves down and figured out how to cultivate this world with Jesus? What if we all just decided to be better gardeners?

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