#1 Way I’m Changing Things

by Brenda on

I wrote about feeling like I’m in the margins, even in the church. That’s a pretty vulnerable thing to write on the internet. ;) But I write to help others, and I’m pretty positive there are lots of others feeling the same way. LOTS of others.

It is a sad epidemic going on. Church is where we’re all learning to be disciples and go into the world to share the good news of Jesus….but if we feel lonely and disconnected within the body, it’s hard to feel empowered or even capable of sharing with strangers. See, it feels like almost everyone is a stranger. Not a total stranger, I know bits about their lives, I have had surface conversations with them. I may have been in their home once…but I don’t really know them, and they don’t really know me. We’re not in each other’s lives.

So, being in this position, if I were to go and make disciples elsewhere, I would:

  • Have nobody to talk to when I’m struggling with the task.
  • Have nobody to get excited with me when it’s going well.
  • Wonder, if I invite these new disciples into my church, will they be in the margins, too?

My number one solution, and if you’re a Christian, this may just sound like a “WELL DUH” solution, is to:

Be in God’s Word.

Perspective changes when we’re in God’s Word. The pains of the world, and yes, even the pains within the body hurt less when we’re in God’s Word. Excitement for life, love for others, peace in general–all of this increases when we’re in God’s Word.

It does not solve the issue at hand immediately.

But maybe, just maybe, I can learn more about Jesus and His friendships, or how to relate with people. My gut feeling is, because this is how I’ve always felt, it isn’t the fault of the people I’m around. My thought is–this is about me. Maybe I didn’t learn how to gather friends as a child (lonely playground memories confirm this…yes, this struggle has been with me always). Maybe it was passed down to me. (It does seem to run in families–this being in the margins thing…). Maybe it was passed down to my parents and their parents; this inability to be IN the crowd, and a struggle with it throughout life. I’d love to read studies on this….But that’s another subject. Let’s focus on what we all should be reading, as a #1 step to overcoming this In the Margins life.

Read the Word.

It’s hard to get into it or to just start reading the Bible if you haven’t done it in a while, or ever. What I did to start the habit was to write it on my to do list every single day. I am a task oriented person, and seeing the checkbox there motivates me.

Eventually, as you simply check off the to do’s and get it done, you start to like it.

And one day you’ll notice, you just wish you had more time to read. The words will be flying off the pages into your mind, and you’ll want to soak up more. This is a good thing.

There’s a GREAT app that I highly recommend to start digging into God’s Word. It’s called Read Scripture. The daily reading is a manageable amount, plus there are sometimes videos to help you understand what you just read. You can set reminders on your phone or tablet, and it will tell you “It’s time to read the Word!” I believe this app can help people get into a daily reading routine.

Don’t make it complicated for yourself by adding multiple Bible studies or trying to read too much each day. Stick to a reading program once you’ve established it. Don’t set yourself up for failure by deciding you’ll be reading through the Bible in 6 months. ;) That’s a great goal, IF you’ve already established a pattern of Bible reading and you have a good hour or more per day to spend on it! If you’re a newbie, or back at it again after a time without this regular reading schedule, start in on it now, and choose a simple reading schedule like Read Scripture.

So that’s my solution for myself and for all of you today: Read God’s Word. More coming soon. :)

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