I have to tell you that Pinterest and I do not get along. I love the ideas, but I also very much dislike that no matter what projects I have pinned —my attempts never come out looking like the picture.
I follow the directions, watch the videos and yet somehow it is still not right. I go to things like Pinterest for help and hope that I can duplicate something that I see and love, but no, it just doesn’t happen that way for me.
Do you ever feel like that in life? You see something you like or desire and want it. You try to get it by duplicating it. You try to figure it out— try to implement a formula and follow it step by step to achieve desired results.
Do you know a couple you really want to be like? You think they have it made, everything appears to be great and you want what they have? So you stalk their social media, watch them in public and hang around them hoping that you will one day be like them? Maybe you don’t do this now, but I am sure at some point in your marriage you have felt that someone else had it better than you.
My husband and I have a couple like that in our life. Yet, we never sought out to be like them. We didn’t really even think we were like them until many, many years after moving out of state. I would love to tell you about them and tell you they never set out to be a Pinterest project. They simply love each other, they love people and they love the church.
God sent Eric and I, right after our wedding, to the most amazing little church in Avondale, LA. We were newlyweds excited about our new marriage and excited about life itself. We visited a friend of Eric’s at church one day and fell in love with their pastor and his wife. We loved them because of how real they were. God connected our hearts together immediately and over time they loved on us deeply. We spent countless nights up late laughing, eating popcorn, and talking. They had children who were small at the time and yet they never let that dictate who they were to us. The Pastor was bi-vocational and she homeschooled while leading the music at the church.
They taught us so much about life, but I don’t think they ever considered that they were teaching us—they just did. Not one time do I think they knew that by living life with us they were helping to shape us into who we are today. You see, my sweet friends, Marc and Kristen shared with us the love of Christ that goes to the least of these. They instilled in us that ministering to people sometimes means big sacrifice. They showed us that it is all about the people.
I did silently want a relationship like theirs. I watched them as they loved each other deeply and cared about one another. They held hands, giggled together and looked at each other with such affection. I now know it is because of the deep love they have for Jesus and the way they so selflessly serve that keeps that spark alive. I also know, because she was always so real with me, that it isn’t easy. That just because it looks happy doesn’t always mean it is. She also always told me it was worth it.
I didn’t have to follow a formula, a recipe or a set of instructions. I just needed to follow Christ. That is how we truly make disciples. We follow hard after Jesus and lead others to him.
They didn’t know that we were watching so close but because of them they have made MANY disciples along the way. Each person we have had the privilege of ministering to they have had a part in it. Each student who we have given our time, opened our home, laughed with endlessly, and talked about the hard stuff with have been touched by them as well.
I pray that when you hear Jesus’ words;
“Therefore GO, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19
you would be encouraged to live with people and show them the way. Live a life that people want to duplicate and that will bring glory to God. It is truly worth it.