Alex has two more weeks before he starts work, and something that we wanted to do was check out some of the other churches before we started going to Central UMC every week. So today, we went to First Baptist Rogers. It was a good-sized church (not nearly as huge as the "Six Flags over Jesus" that we've heard about) and was very welcoming. That's something that is becoming more and more important to both of us. “Do they see me, do they care, do they want me?” These are all questions that I ask, along with, “Is it easy to find someone that does know something?” So we walked into the middle service, sang songs that we knew and settled down for the sermon. I looked into the menu (most people call this a bulletin) to see what the scripture was and saw Joshua 3. Let me digress a little.
This morning, for my quiet time, and for a few weeks, God has been showing me that he wants me to be still and silent in his presence. I need to keep my ears and eyes open, stay on the path and just keep on doing whatever I am doing. One of the things I have blogged about has been how I am one of those people God calls to step out in faith. I am to step out into the water before God stops the water in order for me to walk on the dry ground. So when the preacher started talking about Joshua 3, I almost fell out of my pew. I'm thinking, “I can't even go to a different denomination and not hear from God.” Verses 15 and 16 are about faith and obedience. This is a place in the Bible that I keep coming back to. People in my life ask me questions that pertain to this scripture, and Alex and I now look at each other and smile when it comes up.
Faith and obedience go hand in hand. They go together—not one in front of the other but both at the same time. You have faith, and that makes you want to be obedient, but when you’re obedient, it builds your faith. It's like the chicken and the egg—almost. The bottom line is that somebody has to take that first step, and when that happens, the hearts of the people are captured, and we follow God. In looking back as to who took the first step—me or Alex—I think it happened together. I feel like we trade off on who has more faith and who has more obedience, but long and short, it goes hand in hand. Seeing me doing God's calling in the soup kitchen gave Alex what he needed to step off into seminary, but without his support, I would have never taken that step. Now we are on this side of seminary, and he is waiting to start fulfilling his calling, and it makes me ready to step off into the water.I am just blown away with how, if we listen and pay attention, God will show us the steps to take and when to take them.