Thursday, August 7, 2008

One Body--Many Blogs

I have to tell you, there are SO many incredible blogs out there. God has inspired so many people in special and personal ways to help change the world through the power of words. Whether bits of humor, touches of light sarcasm, or deep slices of life, the variety is awesome.

I know this is long, but read it carefully. Consider this well-worded passage from The Message translation on all the parts of the Body working together for His cause:

1 Corinthians 12:14-24 (The Message, emphasis mine)

I want you to think about how all this makes you more significant, not less. A body isn't just a single part blown up into something huge. It's all the different-but-similar parts arranged and functioning together. If Foot said, "I'm not elegant like Hand, embellished with rings; I guess I don't belong to this body," would that make it so? If Ear said, "I'm not beautiful like Eye, limpid and expressive; I don't deserve a place on the head," would you want to remove it from the body? If the body was all eye, how could it hear? If all ear, how could it smell? As it is, we see that God has carefully placed each part of the body right where he wanted it.

But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of.
An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn't be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, "Get lost; I don't need you"? Or, Head telling Foot, "You're fired; your job has been phased out"? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the "lower" the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it's a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn't you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?


All of this to say, that as a blogger of God's Word, I've learned not to compare but to appreciate instead. All of us blogging together about whatever God lays on our hearts makes a difference. So, I've found some blogs that I wanted to recognize and pass my blog awards onto. Please forgive me for combining them, AND for trying to pick blogs that are unique in some way, shape or form. I've also purposefully chosen not to recognize blogs that I know have already received these awards (which I'm sure they'll thank me for.) If I've repeated anyone, I apologize, but here I go.

On behalf of the Arte y Pico blog award. and the Brilliante Weblog Premio 2008 award, these are the ones God has laid on my heart to recognize:

1. A Spiritual Oasis ministers to me so much. Bill Williams has not only put together a beautiful blog to look at, but the content is outstanding. He has incredible book recommendations on the side, as well as easy access to order them. I highly recommend this blog for frequent thirst-quenching spiritually speaking.

2. Notes In The Key of Life was an incredible find for me. Though the titles of our blog are similar, the themes could not be more different. As someone who doesn't have the time to watch the news or keep up with current events, I love going over there to see what she has highlighted. As a matter of fact, I spent a great deal of time over there this morning bawling my head off over the Steven Curtis Chapman interview video she posted. A few weeks ago, I was laughing my head off at another post. Trust me, you will enjoy Cindy's posts as much as I do.

3. I AM (not) will not leave you disappointed. Natalie has an distinct "voice" in all of her posts that paints a picture of what she is describing to a tee. She says things like "I puffy heart you," and other phrases that put a smile on my face. She can reach to spiritual depth like I've never seen in one post, and then the next day take the most trivial thing and entertain me. Her subtitle alone tells you all about Natalie's heart: "He's God. I'm not. It works." Love it!

4. Josh Janoski's Just Joshin' blog is AMAzing. But don't let the title fool you. He's funny, he's witty, he has a creative way with words, but at the same time...deep, relevant, authentic. I cannot remember a single post that did not minister to my spirit in some way. God has only begun to do ministry through Josh. Many more great things are to come from this Godly man (who, by the way, is one of the biggest encouragers I've ever known--that ought'a tell you something about his heart). His series on the book of James is amazing and is going on right now.

5. I Will Take It, Lord, All I Have to Give Okay, STOP RIGHT HERE. REad that title again, outloud. I will take it, Lord, all I have to give... Wowzer. The title alone admonishes me, challenges me, causes me to worship. What a brave title, and the content of the posts lives up to it. And let me just tell you, I don't know Lori, but I would venture to say that she is a visual worshipper, because her blog has enough visual worship candy to keep me satisfied for hours. Beautiful scripture stamps, quotes, sayings--and without being too loud or busy. I was introduced to the sight through the At The Well Monday Meme we are both involved in and was immediately captivated. When you click over there, you will be too.

6. Meditations and Confessions of A Homemaker could almost be the name of a televesion series, couldn't it? Love it. Oh, and her subtitle: "Meeting Jesus in the most unlikely places: making meals, cleaning toilets, loving my husband and children." Gotta smile over that. Isn't that what it's like as a homemaker, though? Sheila, who prefers to be called "A Woman Found," (wow) has captured the secret of a maturing spiritual life--to minister with joy even in the ordinary tasks we are called to. If all of us did that, my friends, this world would be quite a different place. She has brought dignity back to the homemaker. Her posts are deep, thought-provoking and filled with God's truth. Her blog admonishes me to live out my faith to the fullest each day, and I'll betcha you'll feel the same way when you visit her blog.

7. My Heart's Dee-Light is just that: a true delight to visit. I have no idea if Dee has won any awards or not, (because she's not the type to want to mention it), but lemme just tell you, her heart is pure gold. I know this because she is a friend, but it is also evident on everything you see on her blog. The graphics, the colors, the music, and especially the content. Her words of wisdom are extremely well-written and poignant. It's like each word was chosen deliberately, either to teach, admonish, tickle or emphasize what she is trying to convey. One highlight on Dee's site is her talent for fiction writing. She is a regular contributor and a master writer at Faithwriters, and her work is brilliant in every aspect. I hope Dee's blog brings your heart as much delight as it has mine.


I could go on and on, because as you can see, my Blog List on the window to the right => is quite lengthy. That is because I truly believe what I wrote in the opening. All of us together are making a difference for the Kingdom. May the work of our hands be to His glory, to Him alone. Forever and ever, Lord. All to You. Amen.

8 friends shared a comment:

Joanne Sher said...

Some I know, and some I don't - thank you SO much for your heart, Laura, and for sharing that wonderful passage especially - and these awesome blogs.

iamreallytrying said...

Laura,

Wow! Thanks for the list! There are so many good blogs out there that are so inspirational and thought-provoking. I have to set a timer or I would spend all day going from one blog to the next. I started my own so I could have an outlet for the many thoughts and inspirations I would get. Otherwise, I'd start talking to someone, and it would take 15 minutes just to create the context for what I wanted to say! :-)

Thanks for sharing!

Blessings,
Dena

a woman found said...

LauraLee that was so encouraging! Thanks You Lord for even using a blog :)

There are soooo many encouraging blogs out there...YOURS is one of my top pics for most encouraging!!!!

I could spend HOURS online just reading what God is doing in the lives of so many out there.

Bless you!
Sheila

Blessed One said...

Thank you for directing us to more wonderful blogs. I loved the way you tied all of this together. I'm glad you're "back" - I really missed reading you last week. ('Course this week, I've been a little scarce!) Blessings!

Josh said...

Laura,

Thank you so much for mentioning my blog in your list of awards. To be recognized by such a strong encourager like yourself is truly an honor. Your blog and your wise words have kept me fueled as I continue to write for HIM.

I want to get caught up on all of the great blogs out there during the weekend. So much encouragement and spiritual food to be found from all of them.

Thank you again for the honor. It made my day! :)

a woman found said...

Laura, here's the link to the widget in the sidebar for the Rebelutionary blog

http://www.therebelution.com/blog/rebelution_sidebar_ads

Cindy Swanson said...

Lauralee, thank you SO much! I'm flattered and honored. I'm in Texas right now, visiting my family that lives here (including my precious little grandson), so I'm not blogging much...I'll make sure and acknowledge this when I get back. Thank you again, and blessings! I love your blog too.

Natalie @ I AM (not) said...

Thanks so much! I've been at the lake and just got to check my email! You're words touched my heart!!