Who needs a boyfriend, I got my girlfriends!
It's February and basically summer has begun. Kelly and I have been doing Sunday Fundays and it's been awesome to soak up the sun with a tall PBR in hand. I feel so blessed to have such a great girl friend still here in Jacksonville. Growing up I know we both wanted to get out of town and move to New York or something that sounded fabulous, but living in Jax is amazing. The weather is gorgeous most of the year, there is so much to do, and it really is wonderful having roots in a community. I can't wait until she graduates from UNF and we can both being working professionals! She is going to be an amazing counselor when she starts her career and I am very proud of her accomplishments already. I really look up to her because she is always so collected and really wise. Growing up we both had some challenges in our friendship I think but the past two years have been really good for our friendship. I hope that she continues to find happiness and joy in life. I can see God working in both of our lives in bringing us back together for some stability in friendship especially during this transitional phase of our life. So, thanks, God!
Speaking of God, last night I was reading in Leviticus & Dueteronomy. It's about the law of God for His people while they were wandering in the desert and preparing for the Promised Land. Continuously, Israel will be obedient for a time and then get complacent and whiny with God even when they could LITERALLY see him working in their community. God won battles against improbable armies, they were fed daily by food falling from the sky, a FREAKIN sea was PARTED to get them away from the Egyptian army and they still complained!! Even though in plain sight they had experiences with the abundant love and power of the God of the universe! It makes me wonder even more about who God is.
These books are often hard for me to read and completely understand where I fit in. Most of the laws are "Can'ts": can't eat blood from any animal, can't weave two different kinds of material together for clothing, can't have improper sexual relations, can't live in the community with disease, can't be holy if someone dies in front of you, can't be in the presence of a dead person, etc. No one really likes rules. That is simply understood. But we also understand that rules are to protect us. In the sexual relations category it lists many detestable things including incest, sleeping with your's child's spouse, marrying your wife's sister, homosexuality, beastiality, etc. Most all of these were punishable by death or would cause a person to be cast out of the community.
There are two themes that I think are important to see throughout these books: God was setting up law to protect His people (from disease) and God hates perversion of holiness. In almost every law He finishes by saying "Because I am the Lord." Almost like, because I said so...
I want to please God and I actually am concerned that by doing any of these things I may be displeasing God (like mixing cloths or eating rare meat). I know that Christ came to bring a new law, not one of legalism but one of love. I know that we are to live as Holy beings like our Father who is Holy. What exactly does that mean though? Do we adhere to the law of Moses and the law of Christ? Or do we soley focus on the law of Christ first and pray that our obedience to that will please God? Also, were these laws only for those people to carry them through the time of wandering in the desert? I love history too and I would love a good open theological discussion about this. The one passage that comes to my mind is when Paul talks about eating unclean meat and how it really isn't a big deal unless you are around others who think it is. He doesn't want you to cause anyone else to stumble. Kind of like at home girls wear shorts and bikinis but in other countries, women would cover up with dresses or long skirts to be respectful of another culture.
A few links to open this discussion: