Thursday, April 21, 2016

United We Stand

The Five Minute Friday community has *united* me to so many awesome people. I'm so blessed by each and every one of them. This community wouldn't be anything without any of them. We gather every Thursday night to chat and wait for our gracious host to give us the word prompt. Tonight we talked about the Jungle Book and how evil She Khan is. We also shared about how 3D movies and glasses always make us feel cross eyed. We shared some writing advice. Marie came in and told us she was going to stand in the corner because she is crabby. We told her we'd welcome her "princess crabby pants" anyways. All are welcome here! Then our conversation led to the news of the death of Prince right before Kate gave us the prompt. Then everyone went away to write;  tapping away on their keys. 

I am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today's prompt is "unite."

United we stand, divided we fall.

As a young child, I was a kid who was teased. Those words that were hurled at me hurt my heart. But I was blessed with friends who stood up for me and stood with me.

United we stand, divided we fall.

On Saturday, I will celebrate the 10th Anniversary of my consecration as a Diaconal Minister in the ELCA. Seminary was not at all an easy journey for me. I took systematic theology more times than I care to admit. I am reminded of my first days of classes where I finally mustered up the courage to speak and was immediately shut down.

A few years later,  my advisor gave me sage advice when he said to my approval committee "Do you know how easy it would have been for Tara to walk out the door, shut the door and never look back. It takes more guts to stick with it." Because of those words, I was able to stick with it. I remember one day in particular when some classmates united with me, sat across the table from me, and told me how much they had seen me change over the course of our time together.

United we stand, divided we fall.

Funny story, *my birthday fell in those first days of seminary. I bought my own birthday cake. But my friends and I sat and ate that cake with our hands that night. It is one of my favorite memories from seminary and is engrained in my heart and mind. Together we stood united as we walked across that stage and graduated from seminary. Together we stood united as we watched two of our friends lives united as one. Together we have stood united through each of our joys and sorrows.

United we stand, divided we fall.

God has placed amazing people in my life who have stood by through all of life's ups and downs. My camp friends, youth ministry friends, my online friends and so many more....you have stood united with me. And I will stand united with you.

Last summer, as I got to hug Jen, sit across the table from Janel and Val, my heart was full as I once again found souls that were united to mine as we shared our love of words and writing. Every time I open my mailbox to find a sweet surprise, listen to a Vox or see a note on my Facebook wall, I know that I am not alone!

United we stand, divided we fall.

Too much in this world feels divided...war, destruction, death and the like. Today we read the news of the loss of another music icon whose music often united us.  Yet I know that the ultimate uniter is Jesus--Jesus who binds us together in communities where we will stand united rather than fall divided!

*where my five minutes ended

32 comments:

  1. Hey, I'm visiting from FMF! Thanks for the reminder that we all need each other!

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  2. Tara, it's so beuatiful to see how God unites us with others. When some people beat us down (knowingly or not) to see how God places others in our lives to lift us up, to point us to Him is such an amazing thing. I love reading about how He has united other hearts iwth yours to walk through life together. I am blessed to be part of your online crew. :)

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    1. Jeanne, it really is, isn't it? Thank You!

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  3. Yes, Jesus is the great uniter. Lovely post, Tara!

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    1. Jesus is indeed! Thank You!

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  4. Loved your post. Thank you. Enjoyed reading it (as always).

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  5. Lovely, Tara1 (And may I change the punctuation and shout, "Lovely TARA!"...for you are.)

    It's really nice to have a brief window on the path that brought you here. Thank you for this.

    #6 (and your neighbour) at FMF this week.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2016/04/your-dying-spouse-145-fury-fmf.html

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    1. Thank You Andrew! I am glad that you enjoyed the brief window into the path that brought me here. You are so welcome.

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  6. everything you said is so beautifully true, but special thanks for concluding by reminding us Jesus is our ultimate uniter.

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  7. This is great. It is so important to have people who will stand with us, especially when we face challenges or others are putting us down. We truly need each other and Jesus is what unites us.

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    1. Thanks Carly. It truly is important to have people in our lives who will stand with us. We do indeed need each other and Jesus who unites us all.

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  8. Glad you stuck with it when you would have rather walked out. Our feelings can be liars and untie us rather than unite us. Couldn't resist that play on words with today's prompt ;) even though it's quite true. United we stand with Christ.

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  9. We are so blessed to be united in Christ aren't we? So glad you stuck with your difficult task. You are truly a blessing to my life friend. In the 36 spot today

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    1. Christy, yes indeed we are! I am so glad that I am a blessing in your life. You are a blessing in mine too!

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  10. Tara, you got guts. "Outsiders" don't realize how hard it can be to study theology. It's a competitive environment, which is bizarre. I love that you stuck with it and found people to stand with you!

    There are days when I get bone-tired of all of the division and fighting among the family of God. Then I come here and am smacked in the face with the beauty that is our Lord bringing people together across denominational, cultural and geographic lines. He is mighty good and He does amazing things!

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    1. Thanks Marie! I am glad you get it. You are so right...most "outsiders" don't realize how hard it is. Luckily, my seminary classmates were not competitive. I am glad that I stuck with it too. I too get bone-tired of all the division and fighting among the family of God too. God is indeed good and mighty good!

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  11. Friend, you rock. Your words are full of impact and truth once again. United we stand. Divided we fall. Much needed words for today. Thank you for knocking this one out of the ballpark!

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    1. Wow...thank you Julie! Your kind words are so appreciated!

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  12. I am so thankful for this beautiful community that has united us in friendship. Thank you for sharing part of your journey through seminary. :-) I hope you have a lovely weekend.

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    1. Me too! Hope you had a lovely weekend too!

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  13. Tara,
    oh I remember lonely birthdays too. I sent myself balloons on my 17th birthday at school because I thought my parents wouldn't do anything for me. I'm so happy for your 10 year anniversary and the growth God has produced in you!
    You really are a lovely flower with deep roots, just like Colossians 2:6-7.
    Love,
    Tammy
    (#77 this week)

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    1. Thank You! A lovely flower with deep roots. Those words will stick with me for a long time. Thanks friend!

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  14. I love this! Happy Anniversary... and yes to one day eating cake with our hands! ;) (I know you didn't ask... but if you did, the answer would be yes!)

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    1. And I love you friend! :) Oh and so glad you are willing to eat cake with our hands with me someday. Love you! xoxo

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  15. Tara, you're a terrific source of inspiration and a lovely encourager. In sharing some more of your story you reveal hidden depths of a heart that is determined to press through problems and seek solace in Jesus, as well as having a wonderful willingness to befriend others. Happy and blessed to be one of your FMF chums! :) x

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    1. Joy, thank you! Happy and blessed to be one of your FMF chums too!

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  16. I love your words! I also love learning a little more about your seminary journey. The truth of these words speaks loudly to me today! Thank you especially for this... "Yet I know that the ultimate uniter is Jesus--Jesus who binds us together in communities where we will stand united rather than fall divided!" Have a wonderful week friend!

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    1. Thank You, Mary! Those are some of my fave words from this post too. Hope you have a wonderful week too friend!

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