Sunday, September 11, 2005

Random - So Much to Say, Part II

Church this morning was incredible. Our minister preached about marriage and about how the problems we have in our marriages are our church's business. How do we expect the world to see us as Jesus when our marriages don't reflect that? He made some very bold statements that I applaud him for. My husband (who's dad is a retired CoC minister) said to me, "These are the kinds of sermons my dad preached that would get him fired."

I have also been on a sort of roller-coaster ride of emotions today. We got to church late, but I sat up in the balcony and just cried. All of the songs we sang during praise and worship were about struggle and how God is our refuge in those times. One song, in particular (..."when the rain falls/He is my shelter/and when I'm lost and alone/He rescues me...."), really got to me. I think it's because I want so bad to feel that but don't. I want to believe that He's sheltering me right now and that, even though I feel so lost and alone that He's right there watching over me. I couldn't sing it. The harmonies in that song are so beautiful and I just sat there and cried into Rick's shoulders while the church sang it around me. I so badly want to feel Him.

Then, after church, we decided to go eat at Olive Garden. But then we remembered how far away Olive Garden is from our church and our house. We started that way and decided not to go. We ended up stopping in Brentwood, looking for a meat-and-three that Rick used to like. Apparantly, that place has closed down, but I was absolutely elated to find Smooth Moves. I cannot even begin to explain the joy that rushed through my veins when I saw it. I don't care if you have to pay $5 for a smoothy from that place, it is so worth it. I used to go all the time when they were in Green Hills, at least three times a week. When my parents would come down to visit me, we would always go to Alpine Bagel and grab a bagel and then walk next door to Smooth Moves and have a smoothy for breakfast. Then, one dreaded day, I drove to Smooth Moves, parked in front of the building, and was so saddened to see a sign in their window: "Closed. Moved to Brentwood. The Mall at Green Hills would not renew our lease." Oh, pain! I have looked and looked and looked in Brentwood for them, but have never found them. Years I have been without Smooth Moves. Until today. Glorious, glorious Sunday! It really is a good thing we don't live in Brentwood. We would go broke trying to afford my renewed smoothy habit. At $5 a pop, we would have to file bankruptcy pretty quickly.


At 6:19 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Not being a huge smoothy fan, I simply can't imagine one that I would ever pay $5 for. Glad that you know that it's there for you.

I understand about crying all the way through church -- it's pretty much a regular occurrence for me now. God will bring you to that place of knowing, trusting that "when the wind blows, He is my shelter" -- actually, you KNOW it now, just don't feel it. That will come, as well. And sometimes knowing is enough.

And PREACH ON! about our marriages. Satan has found the biggest weakness in our armour as a body -- that we won't gather prayer warriors around us when our marriages are in crisis. Bless you and Rick for hanging in there.

At 4:35 AM, Blogger Clarissa said...

I don't know what class y'all go to if any, but we've just started going to class again, an 8:45 in fellowshiphall/kitchen side. About strengthening marriages. So far -- awesome.

I, too, cried through the song service. I wasn't expecting to, but sometimes itjust comes. The sermon made me cry at points, too. i'm in a good marriage, but it needs work and improvement, and after that sermon and these classes I'm awakened to that fact like I haven't been in a while.

At 6:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think your $5 smoothie is just what you needed to replinish your bodies' fluids after all that cryin'!!!!

And I cried in church as well because a little boy that I held in the hospital when he was 5 days old and his own Momma was too sick to hold him was baptized. I am, indeed, old enough to have the babies I cared for so long ago (11 years for him) take on Christ in baptism right in front of me, and it is glorious to behold.

Oh, happy day. . .for smoothies and tears and angels rejoicing.


At 6:21 AM, Blogger Debi said...

I've cried through church many times myself over the years - and one thing that it's meant for me is that the Holy Spirit is moving within me. Even though you mentioned ...

"One song, in particular (..."when the rain falls/He is my shelter/and when I'm lost and alone/He rescues me...."), really got to me. I think it's because I want so bad to feel that but don't. "

... at some level you do feel it. That's why you were moved so emotionally. Let the Spirit move within you and in His time, you'll feel that closeness you so long for.

I am always moved by your honesty and candid openness in your postings. You are an inspiration to us all. You're always in my prayers, Amanda.

Your sister in Christ,

At 8:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amanda, your photos are a beautiful representation of God's creation. Thanks for sharing.

I also cry regularly in Church--sometimes from the deep hurts that have overwhelmed me, but mostly from the deep, deep love I have for my Father. Whenever I hear the song "I Can Only Imagine" what it will be like.......will I sing hallelujah? will I dance? will I fall on my knees?" (etc.), I am pretty sure I know what I'll be doing when I finally see Jesus. I'll be crying. My love for Him just stirs my soul that deeply. I fear that I'll spend the first thousand or so "years" of my new body with a big old red nose and sqinting eyes--just crying over finally finishing the race and seeing my Prize! I have been very lost and alone for a long time and don't understand why He hasn't rescued me. However, my love for Him is SO deep that I can only fall back on these thoughts: "Whatever you are doing (painful as it may seem), Lord, I just can't stay mad at You. I can't help loving You with every fiber of my being. You are just too brilliant and creative and awesome to NOT love!"

I have an idea, Amanda, that your love for Him is so deep despite the heavy burdens you've had to carry. Possibly that love will always leak out through your tears. Maybe we'll be sharing a Kleenex box someday in eternity. (???) :)

May He bless you with His answers in His time.

At 10:07 AM, Blogger Amanda said...'s nice to know that I'm not the only cryer in the group. :o)

And these smoothies! Sarah, these aren't normal smoothies. Most of them have 0 dairy products. The one I had yesterday was raspberries, raspberry juice, raspberry sherbert, blueberries, and something else. No dairy. Cold, icy, and incredibly fruity. Oh, the cravings!

At 6:47 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

Myself, I am a Starbuck's addict. While it still astounds me to say it, I don't blink at spending $4 on a White Chocolate Mocha. As you said, Amanda, they are SOOO worth it.

You've had a lot going on the past few months. It is natural that sometimes it catches up to you. I have often been choked with emotion in church. Truthfully, as we search for a church home, that is something I look for. If it doesn't have an emotion effect on me, it isn't going to work for us. I want to feel MOVED while I am in the service....and I need the feeling to stay as I leave and go about my daily routines.

{{{ HUGS }}}


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