Wednesday, December 5, 2018

tell your story

          On our first week of Advent, Caz talk about how we are part of this large arc of a story- the story of all of humanity. It is easy to lose sight of the bigger picture when our daily lives can be mundane and unfulfilling.  Advent is a good time to remember our stories and share them. Find a way to tell your loved ones your stories- the defining moments in your life and in your family’s life. Make a video, write a journal entry, write a post on social media- whatever would be most effective and natural for you.    
          For Ben and I, a large part of our story began when I felt called to move to Austin because of a dream I had. My brother moved to Austin because of a dream he had much later. Our family includes stories of God speaking clearly in large moments and small. I want my daughters to know these stories. My parents met at 19 and a very few months after they started dating, God told my dad that he was supposed to marry my mom. When my dad dismissed the idea, God said “You don’t need to look any further. You have found the woman that will make you happy.” They have been married for 46 years.
        It is easy to doubt God, but when I think of stories like this, it is not possible. I hope we all have stories like this. Our story is part of a larger story of God reaching down to us, humbly entering the word, yearning to be a part of our lives.
Beth Kropf


Thursday, March 1, 2018

Intermittent Lent Update #2

There must be social media in heaven. Imagine what kind of amazing system there must be to tell everyone All The Things. I know there are disadvantages to social media. But heaven will take care of that.
I am still struggling with my pathetic, first-world sacrifice of giving up Facebook.  In some ways it has helped me be more productive, but the Not Sharing Good Things has been tough. I knew when I decided to give up Facebook for Lent that I would have a half marathon during that time. One of the best parts of finishing races is posting the pictures and seeing how many people “like” them.  There was certainly a shortening of my runner’s high without this.
I have been thinking about how lonely Jesus must have felt on Earth. Even His disciples could not be good friends in His darkest hours. He must have felt so disconnected. It is ridiculous to compare me giving up Facebook to this. I still have contact with friends in other ways. But I am glad that this longing has helped me remember Jesus’s suffering. It was not just the cross. It was a lifetime of isolation. Even some of His brothers did not believe He was the Messiah.
Lent is helping me prepare for Easter. I am anxious for our day of celebration. Not just for salvation for us, but to celebrate that Jesus is no longer alone.  He paid such a high price to call us children.
Beth Kropf


Thursday, February 15, 2018

Intermittent Lent Update Day 1

I am really pathetic. The first day of Lent I was already trying to renegotiate my sacrifice. How can I possibly sacrifice when we have decided to take away my toddler’s pacifier? The toddler who comes unglued when she can't wear purple socks? How about I just stay off Facebook when the kids are in school and reward myself with it at the end of the day? That sounds balanced, right? I saw a friend request when I went on to post the blog and if I don't accept until Sunday WHAT WILL SHE THINK OF ME?
         Talk about first world problems.
       So I wrestled but did not cave. This morning instead of looking at pictures of children who let their parents brush their hair, I read about Jesus and the Samaritan woman. This is one of my favorite stories, because Jesus broke the rules and was loving and respectful to a woman who was not respected in her community. He talked about Living Water. Trying to get any kind of satisfaction from Facebook is fleeting. I will be thirsty again. Scripture is God’s love letter to us, and I will have a better day if I dwell on those words. 
Beth Kropf