Saturday, January 30, 2010

the popster

a couple of days ago, i was washing dishes. i have an obsession with washing the dish before i simply put it in the sink. i tend to enjoy an empty sink. so i was washing and scrubbing and drying and i felt this sense like i should sing to my grandad Pop when i go visit him on saturday.

well, today is saturday. it's 10:12 am and i just poured my coffee and i just got my guitar. it's interesting because in my years of music ministry, i have done special music for numerous nursing homes, assisted livings, and amazing elderly people. but not once have i visited any of my grandparents when they're in the hospital and sang to them (sung to them? i never know the proper word usage there). it was so clear though that i was supposed to sing/sang/sung though.
Pop came to my last CD release party, which i couldn't believe. it was so unbelievable to have him there. he is 99 and has lived a full life. i love the popster - which is what i so fondly call him. while he calls me "lindy." he calls me lindy so much that i began to wonder if he really knew my name was lindsey. lo and behold, he does.

i'll blog again to write about what happens today. maybe nothing will happen. but what i do know is this: music touches a deep place in people's souls, even if that place is closed off. music is a universal language that reaches deeper than our pain, theology, beliefs, prejudices, sociological ideals, etc etc.

the word says that we are spreading everywhere the aroma of Jesus to those who are perishing and to those who are being saved. today, through my music, i hope to spread that aroma to Pop. that he would hear and sense and taste and feel hope, peace, and unconditional love.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

go fly a kite

so there i was today at the dog park with my pups and i saw a beautiful sight:

a dad was at the park with his little daughter. they were flying a disney princess-looking kite. it was relatively windy and mostly a perfect day for flying a kite.

the most beautiful part of all was this:

the little girl was holding the string and at first glance, it seemed like she was the one flying the kite and controlling its path. but as you looked a little closer, it became clear that it was actually the dad who was flying and directing the flight path of the kite. he was allowing his daughter to actively participate in the activity, but overall the dad was taking care of things. it was definitely team work, but overall, the dad was the one ultimately in control. yet the little girl was having a blast. she fully trusted her dad to fly the kite with her. and she let him. yet he let her be directly involved in the flying.

i learned so much about God today while watching that dad and his little girl.

so many times i want to rip the string out of my Dad's hand. and then, my kite crashes and burns. but it's the times when i hold onto the string loosely, ultimately knowing that it's my Dad who is flying. it's He who is in control. and He is working for my good and His glory.

so yeah, go fly a kite. but let Jesus hold the string and direct that kite. otherwise, you'll crash and burn. over and over and over again.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

letting go - part 3

let go of being successful.
let go of being right.

and today's letting go blog will be about the 3rd compulsion we need to let go of:

the compulsion to be powerful. to have everything under control.

this is probably my biggest hang = up. i like to be in the driver's seat of my life, my faith, my future. my my my. but this is what ends up happening when i assume responsibility of driving the car, so to speak:

but i'm a control freak and i love being in control. i love feeling like i have all the power in a given situation. this is an allusion, however. because none of us is really in control.

i know this is a short blog, but the reason i haven't blogged since august was because i haven't had the time i needed to develop this 3rd blog on letting go. so i decided to just write and not try to make it anything. even blogging is a control issue for me. so i'm letting go :) and i'm going to just post blogs from now on and not worry about whether or not it's polished or worthy of reading. i'm just going to share. and continue letting go.

since my last post in august, God has continued to challenge me in the area of letting go. the most challenging part has been this:

letting go of what others think of me

it's oh so hard, but one of the best and most freeing things of all.

letting go - part 2

in "letting go - part 1" i divulged some pretty intense stuff. like how these past 6 months have been about dying to self. dying to the obsession to be successful. dying to identities that are outside of who Christ has made me to be.

to recap: i'm walking through an incredible book by richard rohr called "simplicity" and God is rocking my world with it. in my previous blog i talked about the first of the three compulsions we have to let go of, according to richie. which is how i will fondly refer to him as from now on.

the second of the three is the compulsion to be right. ouch, this is a big one for me because i love to be right. i love to be theologically right, dogmatically right, and so on and so forth. basically, i think i have the right to be right.

i used to be so legalistic back in college. i'm still sometimes ashamed of those days. i knew i was right about, oh, say everything. and i knew everyone else was wrong. if you didn't believe how i did, you were dead to me. if you didn't hold to my same "right" beliefs, i considered you "lost." ugh. but how many of us do this continually everyday?

i remember i used to be so legalistic in my "rightness" that i never hesitated to tell people about how wrong they were. one of my sorority sisters in college drank coffee every morning. in my self-righteousness, i thought Jesus should be enough to wake oneself up in the morning. so when she walked into the dining room, i said point-blank "you always have coffee in the morning. is Jesus not enough?" ---- yep, not one of my finer moments. this is when Jesus would've probably looked at me and said "Get behind me satan. i love coffee too." what's funny is that i'm writing this blog with coffee in the passenger's seat on my couch.

so needless to say, i've come a long way. but there are still parts of me that need to die to this obsession with being right. sometimes we so badly want people to change and think like we think. we want them to see the right light as we have. but this is an obsession we must let go of.

richie writes:

"Many things in life cannot be changed; we can only grieve over them. So long as we are no longer under the compulsion of wanting to change them, we have the freedom to change them. Then the change comes from much greater depth - not from our anger, but from a place of integrity; not from a place where fear dwells, but from deep trust; not from a place where self-righteousness rules, but from wisdom."

not only has God uprooted that desire to be known and be successful in my career and ministry, He is walking me through the importance of letting go of always being right, having the right answers, and making sure other people were convinced i was right and in control. what's the common denominator in all that? ME. self-image. selfishness. again, i'm reminded i need to let go of me in order to find Jesus, who really makes me me anyway.

letting go of being right is really hard though, as i'm sure you are all well aware of. Jesus never commanded us to be right. i remember Him commanding us to love our enemies and love one another - even if we think the other person is wrong. oh but this can be so hard!

"When Jesus healed sick people, he always said 'Your faith has made you whole.' He never said, 'Your correct doctrine, your orthodoxy, your dogmatism have healed you.'" - richie

is doctrine important? absolutely. but not at the cost of failing to love others. it is truly amazing what happens when we have grace with ourselves. we naturally end up having grace for others. when i was the most rigid with others, i realized that it was because i was most rigid with myself. i didn't really love myself, thus i had a really hard time loving others. especially those who were different than me and believed different than me.

i still struggle with judgmentalism. what's ironic is that my latest battle has been to guard against being judgmental toward judgmental people. sounds like a riddle, but it's so true and difficult. i end up doing exactly what frustrates me in other people.

"The problem is precisely in the need to be right and the need to think of myself as right. That is the problem for the soul. I have to do my work and leave the judgment to God. I need to avoid the compulsion to be constantly passing judgment, because those constantly passing judgment are not in a position to honestly perceive their own reality." ouch richie. ouch.

but isn't it true?

so my challenge to you and myself is to choose Love instead of choosing to be right. i have to constantly remind myself to do this with others, as well as apply it to dealing with myself. i am my own worst enemy and my own worst critic. we must start being more gentle with ourselves, less rigid and more loving. so hopefully that will bleed onto those around us. and maybe we can change the world just a little bit through one simple act of love and service to others.

i challenge you to join me in praying this prayer:

"Jesus, help me love You, myself, and others as You have loved me. help me trust you. help me let go of my desire to be right."

love is the new right.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

letting go - part 1

so there i was laying in my bed last night having trouble falling asleep. my mind was going 100 mph. i soon realized i was writing in my head. i couldn't stop writing and thinking about stuff i wanted to write. then it hit me: i haven't blogged in a decade. i have so much to say, and that's the reason i haven't blogged. so much has happened, it's almost like, where do i even start? but this morning, i was reading in my favorite new book, and i got inspired to focus today's blog on something very specific, and also very personal.

the theme: letting go
the time: hardest and best time of my life
the place: blogging from my living room couch
the problem: the bug guy just came and sprayed the inside so it smells and i'm getting a headache
the solution: keep blogging

thus, i've returned from the blogging dead. this blog series will be in parts because you would all go blind if you read everything at once. the following quote encapsulates pretty much everything i've been learning and going through since i last blogged.

"In my opinion there are three primary things that we have to let go of. First is the compulsion to be successful. Second is the compulsion to be right - even, and especially, to be theologically right. That's an ego trip, and because of this need churches have split in half, with both parties prisoners of their own egos. Finally there is the compulsion to be powerful, to have everything under control. I'm convinced that these are the three demons Jesus faced in the wilderness. And so long as we haven't looked these three demons in the face, we should presume that they're still in charge. The demons have to be called by name, clearly, concretely, and practically, spelling out just how imperious and self-righteous we are. This is the first lesson in the spirituality of subtraction." -- excerpt from "Simplicity" by Richard Rohr

so... that's what i've been up to (to answer many emails and inquiries) i have been looking these three demons, so to speak, in the face. and up til recently, those compulsions have been in charge.

first, some perspective and time-context:

i led worship on a women's retreat several months ago. since i lead worship for so many retreats, it's easy for me to see myself as someone who is there to serve and pour out, rather than be poured into. rarely do i go expecting to rest and retreat, like most of the other participants. but at this particular women's retreat with a group of amazing gals from the dallas area, nothing was business as usual. or should i say, ministry as usual. God was preparing me for something and this was the catalyst.

at the retreat, the resounding theme was "let go." it wasn't the theme of the retreat and no one necessarily spoke about it, but it was being spoken to my heart every second of every day. one night, i was on a panel where spontaneously i spoke about my deepest fears. my fears grew legs and started walking all over the room out of my mouth. i shared with these women (most of whom i didn't even know) about how my biggest fear was losing my ministry. i struggle so badly with trust. i'm not sure if i'll be able to eat tomorrow, even though God has provided food for me everyday for 27 years. i doubt if i'll be able to pay my mortgage, even though i've never gone one night without a roof over my head and a decent bed. i fear that i'll have nothing, even though my whole life i've had everything i needed. on this panel, sitting on an incredibly uncomfortable stool because my jeans were too tight, i divulged. directly following my flood of fears speech, a friend of mine said something so simple yet so powerful and life-changing.

she said that sometimes at the root of our deepest fears, we will find an idol.

whoa. wow. and ouch. it hit me all at once like a mallet. the root of my fear was my ministry. keyword being "my." had my ministry become an idol? had i finally fallen into that trap against which i have tried so desperately to protect? had i let my ego and self and flesh get in the way of humility, yet again?

yes. yes. and undeniably yes.

that night, everything changed for me. i realized everything had to change for me. i couldn't go back. i was on my face wallowing with conviction. i had allowed life to become about me. God was preparing me, in that moment, to let go. not just of something so small as "my" ministry, but to let go of my entire self. to let go of lindsey kane. to let go of my ambition, wants, needs, desires, fears, obsessions, anxieties, etc.

little did i know that God was going to take me into a season of letting go of everything. a season where lindsey kane ministries would be that seed that fell to the ground and died, so that new growth could begin. so that my heart could be changed. so that my pride and arrogance and self-righteousness would become extinct. or at least, that long arduous process would start. but i'm jumping ahead of myself.

what began that night continues to grow inside my heart each day. even now as i sit here typing, i can go back to that day and that place where i felt the sting of conviction. a friend of mine once said "it can't be all about God when it's still all about you." i never wanted it to be all about me, but for some reason, a little bit of self crept in. so, what began that night was a much needed death: death to self. that might, i became painfully aware of the first of the three things richard writes about in his book:

>>> i had given in to the compulsion to be successful <<<

thankfully, i have the Holy Spirit inside me who will stop at nothing to make me look more like Jesus. so there was a huge part of me that genuinely wanted God to get all the glory. i've wanted Him to be the focus of this ministry He's called me to. but oh the flesh - so strong. almost like that nagging fly that insists on landing on your food. always trying to get in the way. and it had. the fly had flown for far too long. it was time to raise the holy fly swatter and get to killing.
so that's part 1: the death of my compulsion and obsession with being successful. it seems i've been here before, oh say 200 times. but still, God in His kindness, continues tenderly to teach me this lesson.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

total worship

so there i was, checking my email which i haven't done in a while, and a friend emailed me an amazing article by paul baloche. enjoy. feel free to share your thoughts, comments, opinions.

"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins."
- Benjamin Franklin

"Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Reason is the natural order of truth."
- C.S. Lewis

It's no surprise in today's culture that media is driven by passion. One look at movies and music today will show that the angst and cry of a broken heart will sell far more than a rational understanding or portrayal of the world. The same may to be true for modern church and worship. It is possible that the Church relies more heavily upon passion than it does intellect.

Consider discipleship programs that emphasize the importance of a heart set on fire for God. It's these same programs that encourage living in a constant state of expectation from God-never being satisfied with the place we're at but always striving for the mountaintop. The idea here is that at every peak of faith, there is a higher level of passion and emotion relating to our walk with God. It is true that we want to be continually growing in our relationship with God, but an inordinate emphasis on this type of striving may, in fact, cause disappointment or even loss of faith.
Beyond Adrenaline

Our God is not purely an emotional being. Time and again in Scripture God makes the emphasis on knowledge known: "Make your ear attentive to wisdom, incline your heart to understanding; for if you cry for discernment, lift your voice for understanding" (Proverbs 2:2-3 NAS). Increasingly over the years, I've seen a decline in the meaningful content of teaching and lyrics. Discipleship seems to focus on what to avoid rather than what to learn and question. Worship is based on a permeating drum-line and an epic sound rather than what the words mean that we are singing. Repetition has replaced ingenuity of expression. Emotion and passion have replaced intellect and rationale. What used to be a steady, sound faith is now running the risk of becoming as fluid as our likes and dislikes.

The goal of being a Christian is to become mature in that faith. The emphasis on passion in the Church seems to derail, or at least not encourage, this maturity in faith; instead, passion and emotion develop Christians who upon the slightest bump will wonder what their faith has come to. I've seen this in young and old Christians, alike. When their faith is based primarily on an emotion, the moment that feeling leaves them, they wonder where God has gone.

Here and Now

As worship leaders, we might find ourselves praying week after week in front of the congregation for God to take us to a place we've never been, when perhaps God is trying to speak to us right where we are at. The latter creates an atmosphere of people worshiping in the moment. The former encourages a feeling of unfulfilled urgency rather than immediate connection.

Instead of fiery passion, let me suggest we emphasis a mature expression of love. It is love that is proclaimed to be above all other gifts, above all hope and faith (1 Corinthians 13:13). It is love that does not fail when the feeling fades or when the relationships get tough. Love does not expect a pleasant emotion to accompany it at all times. Love does not expect that we will be excited and in awe of it at every turn. Love does not ask to be pointed out and flaunted in every area of our lives. Rather, love is our foundation. Regardless of how passionate we feel about serving God or other people, our mature, quietly persisting love will withstand the many trials we face.

Total Worship
This subject is not easy to address in our Christian culture. Always-whether it is in politics, entertainment, or the Church-people who focus on emotionalism always look more compassionate and spiritual than those who don't. Let us not be swayed by this fa├žade. Emotion is fleeting, but wisdom and love are steady. Being steady is what will win out in the long run-whether it is in human relationships or in our walk with God. Passion has its place in a body of believers who want to come together to worship God, but this should be only a part of the total worship experience.

Friday, May 1, 2009

CD review

hey peeps!

i know it's been too long since my last blog, but this has been the craziest month, probably of my life. so please have grace on a sistah. 

today i wanted to share a CD review with you that i just received. on my last project, i got a really bad review from a guy in the Christian music industry. and i'll admit, it hurt my little feelers. but i let it make me stronger! yeah right, who am i kidding. it totally still hurts my feelings when i think about it.

but lo and behold, here is a positive review of the new CD "you'll be whole" - which you really should buy. i believe so much in this music that i'm allowing people to copy my cd and give it to their friends. how about that?!

i don't think it's on itunes yet because itunes is as slow as my great grandad's narcoleptic sleep-talking sentences. 

but click HERE to read the review.

and don't worry, i promise i'll actually blog something interesting soon...