Keeping it Real & Reverence for God

So, I’ve been reading Leviticus. Yep, you read that correctly, Leviticus.

Many of you have graciously inquired in your posts about how I approach biblical research. At some point, I would love to type out a step-by-step process and post it for you, but for now I will simply say that my first step before consulting any biblical resource is always to read the book of the Bible that I am studying in full, all in one sitting. Sometimes I even read the text aloud. I do this because I find that I gain a much better comprehension of the book if I read it all in one sitting than if I break it up into little segments over a longer period of time. After I read the whole book in its entirety a couple of times, I go back and study the chapters, then the verses, and finally the various phrases and words. In brief, my methodology being a very simple-minded woman is to start with the whole so that I can understand the parts.

Well, the last couple of nights I have read Leviticus in full because for the life of me, I cannot remember the last time that I read it. I think it was during my first year at Moody Bible Institute in Old Testament Survey. And mostly I was reading it to get the grade, if you know what I mean. Okay, I was only reading it to get the grade! Anyway…I know reading a book of the Bible in its entirety might sound daunting at first, but ya’ll, Leviticus is only 27 chapters, which means that it took me less than two hours to read it the first time and just a little over an hour the second time. This is not that much time if you think about it, considering we spend at least two-three hours a day feeding ourselves and almost half that much time blow-drying our hair and putting on make-up. If a book can’t be read all in one sitting, then the next best thing is to break it up over two sittings. You get my drift!

Back to Leviticus…Since we are living on this side of the cross of Jesus Christ and are not “Levites” per se and are certainly not camped out in the Sinai wilderness, what relevance does Leviticus have for us? Perhaps the main theme of Leviticus can point us in the right direction as to how we can apply this significant text. In quick summary fashion, the book of Leviticus gives instructions to the Israelites about how to be holy before a holy God, and how to live amongst the people of God and even foreigners in a way that reflects this holiness. The Hebrew noun that is rendered “holy” in our English texts is used in its various forms over 120 times in Leviticus. Since I am a little slow sometimes, I really love it when an author slams a term, phrase, or theme over and over again so that I simply cannot miss it or disregard it. But, what does it mean for God to be holy? I love how one of my favorite professors, Dr. John Walton puts it: “God’s holiness is not a separate attribute but the result of the sum total of all of his attributes- including but not limited to his sovereignty, omniscience, love, and righteousness. Holiness is a term that implies comparison. God is holy in relation to the people he created. When God asks his people to be holy as he is holy, he means we are to maintain distinctions between ourselves and the world around us by imitating God himself” (The Essential Bible Companion, 19).

I am sure there are a number of good applications that we could make from Leviticus, but I can only mention a few that hit me between the eyes as I re-read Leviticus. First, Leviticus reminds us that it takes incredible sacrifice to eliminate or wipe away the effects of our sin so that we can be in the presence of God. Bottom line: Sin is serious. This is convicting to me personally because somehow over time I have worked-up a nonchalant relationship with my sin. For example, when I sin I tend to do so in a way that deliberately predicts the grace that I will receive immediately when I confess. I personally do not have to participate in any intricate process for my sin to be obliterated, so I think to myself, “there is now no condemnation for those of us who are in Christ Jesus” and that nothing can separate us from the love of Jesus Christ (Romans 8). While these things are certainly true, the New Testament reiterates that grace should never cause us to feel some sort of stagnant peace with our sin (see Romans 6:1,15; Hebrews & James, also). As Christians each of us have been given the confidence to enter the “holy place” by the blood of Jesus (Heb. 10) and though we may not offer up grain offerings or animal sacrifices like the ancient Israelites did, we do well to recall often that our merciful standing before our holy creator God required the sacrifice of Jesus Christ’s flesh. Texts like Leviticus 10:1-3 provide a good corrective to my inappropriate abuse of God’s grace through Jesus Christ. If you don’t have a Bible with you, that text presents two sons of Aaron as offering unwarranted incense before the Lord. Aaron’s two sons, Nadab and Abihu, were immediately consumed (a.k.a killed) by fire that came out from the presence of the Lord. The Lord’s words that follow directly after this incident give me goose-bumps. He says, “By those who come near me I will be treated as holy, And before all people I will be honored.” And then the text follows, “So, Aaron, therefore, kept silent.”

I’m just relieved Aaron kept silent.

Sometimes we can get so comfortable in our theological constructs that we need to read something shocking to awaken us from our spiritual slumbers. One of the things that the wonderful and legendary Dr. Greg Beale used to say in class at Wheaton was: “Sometimes you need to comfort the afflicted, but other times you need to afflict the comforted.” I have this phrase written in the front page of my Bible because I have found it very useful in my own walk with the Lord. Sometimes I am so broken and so desperate for hope that I need to meditate on a comforting passage in Scripture, but other times these dry bones need a rebuke so that they can dance once again.

My second application is perhaps a little more questionable, maybe even controversial, and has proved difficult for me to form into words. Forgive me in advance for my lack of precision. It tends to characterize my generation more than it does my Mom’s generation. It has to do with my generation’s all-too-often nonchalant relationship to our holy Creator. While I am sure we could exposit this for hours, I just want to give one main example. Lately I have overheard several staunch believers publicly utter words like “I am so ticked off at God” but the word used wasn’t ‘ticked’, if you know what I mean. I’ve heard even more crass statements than that one to describe this same sort of thing but do not feel comfortable quoting these words on a blog because most of them involve swear-words. I am sure you can imagine the type of thing I am referring to. Most of these people connect their confession of anger toward God with “being authentic” and “keeping it real”. I am getting the feeling that there is some sort of underlying and unquestioned assumption that “keeping it real” and “being authentic” means sharing and expressing to others most everything that our soul emotes, even in its darkest and most wicked places. A few times I have actually gotten the sense that some might even parade their anger toward God as some sort of boast of their own authenticity. Something about this makes me unashamedly queasy. One of the reasons crass comments like “I am so ticked off at God” bother me is that they sound suspiciously similar to the rants of the rest of the world which continually condemn God for everything gone wrong, minor or major. We should be set apart from the world, especially in our confessions of God’s faithfulness and justice.

Having said all of this, I do think my generation’s love and passion for authenticity is tremendously commendable, I am just not sure it is always fleshed out appropriately. I think the reason we prize authenticity is because the temptation of the generations before us might have been toward quietly bottling up their anger with God while serving Him ingenuinely in their local churches. But, I guess my question is, in our desire to “keep it real”, “to be authentic”, and to flee far from hypocrisy, are we disrespecting our God? And if so, where is the line?

I don’t think there are any simple answers and I am certainly not out to offer solutions, because I simply don’t have them. I do think, however, that the thin line here lies somewhere between the paradox so eloquently described in Matt Redman’s words in the song “Face Down”. The lyrics go something like this, “Welcomed in to the courts of the King, I’ve been ushered in to your presence…Lord, I stand on your merciful ground, yet with every step tread with reverence.” The paradox that we experience as a Christian is this: we may stand on merciful ground, but we do so ever mindful of God’s other-ness. The paradox gives us the luxury to confidently pour out hearts before our God who is our refuge and with whom we have a personal relationship through Jesus Christ. The paradox, however, never allows us to do so in a crass or unacceptably colloquial manner that undermines the holiness of God. The hard truth is that we are going to endure times that we feel God is absent or even that He is forsaking us in a certain situation but we should be careful how, when, and to whom we verbalize it. Perhaps, in smaller matters that mostly have to do with our distrust in God, we may need to repent of our unbelief. In matters of great disasters that leave our heads completely spinning in devastation, perhaps we should first confess to Him our anger and grief in our personal prayer lives or maybe even with an individual and very trusted accountability partner. He obviously knows when we are angry with Him, so we should confess this to Him, plead with Him, and pour out our hearts to Him in truth, but must we always publicly express our displeasure toward God? Perhaps you have better answers and solutions than I do, but I do fear that our crass expressions may expose our disrespect for an almighty God more than they expose our personal authenticity.

Jesus promised that in this world we will have trouble, so let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful (Heb. 10). And when those moments come that we feel abandoned by God, let us take heart knowing that for now we see in a mirror dimly, but there is going to be a day when we will see face to face. Yes, sister, one of these days, we shall know fully (1 Cor. 13:12). God simply has not revealed all of the information we need to be able to judge and assess all the trials in our lives and all the suffering in our fallen world. We may never understand the trials we go through on this side of glory. Consider Job’s sufferings and how he never once knew the reality behind his suffering. We, the readers of Job know why he suffered, but he himself never knew and after forty chapters of questionings and turmoil, all Job could do was utter to God: “Behold I am insignificant…” and “I know that Thou canst do all things…I have declared that which I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know…But now my eyes see Thee, Therefore I retract and I repent…(Job 40-42). I believe that when we know in full, we will declare God just and true, and that perhaps we will wish that we hadn’t been so quick to condemn Him for all our earthly trials.

“Great and marvelous are Thy works, O Lord God, the Almighty; Righteous and true are Thy ways, Thou King of the nations. Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify Thy name? For Thou alone art holy; For ALL THE NATIONS WILL COME AND WORSHIP BEFORE THEE, For Thy righteous acts have been revealed.”
Revelation 15:3-4

Anxiously waiting for ALL of God’s righteous acts to be revealed,
Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick


201 Responses to “Keeping it Real & Reverence for God”

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  1. 151
    Anonymous says:

    How blessed you are with the decision to be walking and trusting the Lord, as young as you are, Melissa! May God continue to give you a hunger and a burden for Him, His Word, and the leading of the Holy Spirit in your life. May we be the testimony and witness to those we hear degrade our God and His very holy name! May we be bold enough to praise Him in their very presence. As they have the freedom to choose to say what they wish, we must have the freedom, boldness and courage to do the same! May you continue to be blessed as you read God’s Word, specifically in the Old Testament. As I am a completed Jew and have been for many years and now still remain in a New Testament Bible believing Baptist church, I enjoy, more than you will ever know the Old Testament as well as the New. God is good, all the time!

  2. 152
    lindsey kate says:

    Wow, girl! You are quite the thinker and writer. I made it all the way through thinking it was Beth I was reading … until I saw your name at the bottom.

    You are so right in your assertion that we need to keep God’s holiness foremost in our heart and mind even when He seems to have let us down. I, too, have heart believers say the most brazen things about God, and it nearly takes my breath away.

    We would do well to remember that He who spoke the world into existence could just as easily speak us out of existence. He is worthy of our deepest respect.

    Thanks for a very thought-provoking post.

  3. 153
    Libby says:

    Melissa –

    Thank you for that thoughtful & powerful post. I, too, would love a more detailed exposition of how you study the Word – just listening to Beth the last few years has really inspired me to understand more the genesis of words & how they apply & affect the Scripture's meaning. But I'll definitely employ the sit-down-read-through method to start.

    More importantly, thank you for the reminder that I am need a little affliction these days to help me refocus on the goodness of His sovereignty, & quit making excuses for my dry bones. This was a blessing to me.

  4. 154
    Sue Sue says:

    Yes! Another good word we can take to heart! I’m still hearing the words of Beth saying, we just need to”Stop It”!
    I so agree with you and what you’ve said. The word Casual keeps coming to mind. So many of us are so casual and flippant in our relationship with our Holy Father. Thanks for calling this to our attention.

  5. 155
    Jenn says:

    I just discovered this Blog and I’m a huge fan of Beth’s. How exciting to get a bit of Moore every day! Melissa, I think I’m part of the generation you’re talking about and I appreciate your take on its collective relationship with Christ. Thank you for being open to God’s work through you and best of luck with your growing family!

  6. 156
    Sarah says:

    Amen! Thank you for this post. It is something I have been struggling with our generation and haven’t been able to put into words. There is an uneasy feeling I get when I go into the churches and talk with people that are more of the “emergent” (or whatever you call it movement) that is hard to articulate. Our God is a great God who alone deserves to be praised. I am so thankful that He is trustworthy, sovereign, loving and just and knows what is good for me so much more than I do :).

  7. 157
    Aunt Rhody says:

    We are so blessed that God does not give us what we deserve, but He gives to us out of His deep love. Thank you for this post. It seems to me that you have begun a fabulous book. I look forward to the next chapter. Although I am a few years older than your Mom, I have four daughters, mostly older than you, but one is younger. I see my thoughts and attitudes replicated in them in their relationship with God, but I also completely agree with you in your attitude toward holiness. It seems that history would prove that the pendulum swings with subsequent generations in regard to holiness. Why do you think that is true?

  8. 158
    Anonymous says:

    I too had a conversation about reverance this last week. I was talking to a young woman about the very thing you described Melissa. How we forget to be in awe of God. It was something this young woman said she had never thought about. I remember years ago when I first read through the Old Testament and thought how we need to remember who God is. He is absolutely love and grace but He is also justice and truth. Obedience has become an almost obsolete word in our Christian vocabulary. It is finding the balance between being real and being too familiar with the Creator and Sustainer of the universe. How I praise Him that I can call Him father but at the same time I need to stand in awe of Him.

    Lynn in Alberta

  9. 159
    Ashton says:

    How unique you are! I love your deep inside into God’s word. You kind of remind me of Debra who was the leader, judge and prophet of God. Maybe it’s the strength of character in you I see in your writing.

    I tend to keep my anger hidden where I can’t see it or the bitterness buried so not to view it, but I cannot fly to the highest mountain top or the pits of hell to hide from Him. Grief too, when it rains it pours.

    This past Saturday, I was at Wholefoods and coming out the line feeling such doom and gloom. I spoke to a woman who was setting up for her small group to perform music. I noticed CD’s and one being Christian. I asked if she was a Christian and was and the lady and I began to talk and through our talking she encouraged me to pray, pray, pray, pray. Just through those few moments I began to see a pin hole of light and it began to grow. Allison

  10. 160
    Anonymous says:

    I wanted to comment on Roxanne Worsham’s second comment about her mom’s passing. I too have lost my earthly momma and as I read her story, my heart hurt so much for her.

    My mother came to live with us when she became very sick, and I took care of her for her last 3 years before she died. I never left her side, but on the morning she died, I had gone to the bathroom and decided to go back to wash my hands. That’s when she took her last breath. My sister from out of town was there, but I wasn’t.

    I was miffed about that for so long. I don’t ever remember cursing God, but I do remember thinking “I’m sure He knows I am miffed with Him.”

    Roxanne, thank you for your story. And thanks, Melissa, for your words on having reverence for God!

    Love you to the moon and back!

  11. 161
    Anonymous says:

    Amen and amen. The Lord has really spoken a needed message through you, dear Melissa.

    Siestas, could you remember to pray for all the College students headed off for their respective places in the next few days and weeks. Pray that they will recognize God’s presence in their new place, away from all that is familiar and that they will rely on His strength in all things…especially the temptations that they cannot even yet imagine.
    Pray for the tender hearts of the Mom’s and Dad’s who are launching their childen into the next phase of life.
    And pray to see if there is some way that you might bless a college student, especially if you live in a college community. If you are the parent of a student far from home, consider if God would have you reach out to a student in a nearby university, just as you would love some other Mom to do the same for yours 🙂

  12. 162
    Alyson says:

    Hey, Melissa!

    I saw the word “Leviticus” and somehow immediately knew this one was yours. Scrolled down, and sure enough! You are so richly blessed in your ability to bring home truth…

    This post reminded me of your mama’s phrase “throw a respectful fit”. He knows already where our hearts are rebelling and disrespectful; it is such an awesome truth that His love covers us anyway…and that He expects us to come clean with Him even over the worst sins.

    Thanks so much for posting this. It gives me such good words and word pictures to clarify the whole issue of holiness and disrespect.


  13. 163
    Miranda says:


  14. 164
    Sheryl says:


    This post was right on time for me. I teach Sunday School and we will begin studying I Samuel next month. This weekend I am going to sit down and read the book through. I will follow your suggestions.
    I get so much out of studying God’s Word–maybe more than the ladies in my class. So, I’m excited to see what God is going to teach me through this new (for me) approach to studying.
    Thanks again!

    Sheryl Dean

  15. 165
    Amanda says:

    Well said! I agree that our anger at God is usually a sign of disbelief or a lull in our faith at that particular time. I have been there. I have doubted God’s love for me in particular situations. But, I admit it didn’t feel right. I knew I was accusing God of being something He wasn’t…unjust.

    We just don’t know it all yet. Life hurts because of our fallen world. There are times when we just have to trust that God is always in control and that He truly can bring good of ALL things.

    Thanks for the post!

  16. 166
    Vicki Sandifer says:

    Needed to hear that today. Thank you so much and Melissa you said it all just fine girl!! WOW!
    Good word. Thank you for allowing God to use you like He does.
    Bless you Girl,

  17. 167
    Sunni-Nichole' says:

    Oh, how I praise God for your words! You can’t imagine how much I needed that.

  18. 168
    Lesleigh says:

    Hi Melissa,
    I have never left a comment before. However, I read this blog daily and have ever since I purchased Beth’s book Get Out of That Pit. I feel the time is right to become an official “Siesta”. You, Beth and Amanda have inspired me to make a 180 degree turn in my life. I wanted to thank you especially for being such a good example. I am 10 years older than you, but I look to you as a role model!!

    Being a fairly new Christian, I am hungry for the Word and eager to learn. The way that you write is so refreshing. You put things into perspective that make it easier for me to understand. I find myself having “ah-ha” and “oh…I get it” moments all the time. I love every post left on this blog, but I especially like it when you write.

    So, please keep doing what you are doing because you are truly an inspiration to me.

    Peace and Love

  19. 169
    Suz says:

    I am new to this blog and your post blew me away. What a sobering look at our carelessness with the holiness of our Lord. Thank you from deep unto deep.

  20. 170
    Shellie Paparazzo says:

    I’ve had a really hard time with this lately, because I feel like God hasn’t been faithful to me. Everyone tells me that I need counseling, but somehow nobody thinks that it’s just as important to convince my husband it’s important enough to spend his money on. Besides right now it looks like I have only one option and this is entirely dependent on her having an opening and not retiring yet. She was about to retire the last time Becky talked to her. But I can’t even call her until my husband says I can go at all.

  21. 171
    Sarah Martin says:

    You inspire me with your diligent study of the Bible. I would LOVE to read some of your notes on your process for doing so. Also, I would love to read about a “day in the life” of Melissa as she does research for Beth. Just a thought…

    If you happen to read this, would you give us your definition of authenticity and your definition of that authenticity that our generation seeks? I am doing research to write something (not sure what format yet) on the subject of women and their Biblical worldview. I realized after reading your post that, women struggle with the notion of authenticity-even Christian women. Anyway, I don’t want to infringe upon your time, but I thought this would be a worthy topic to blog about.


  22. 172
    Kali says:

    Thank you for sharing that. It really made me think. I haven’t had the time to check the blog the past week and when I came on today I saw this post and it really spoke to some things going on in my life. Sometimes we get all bent out of shape and angry because we can’t understand God – but really we aren’t supposed to. If we could then it would diminish some of His power in a way because we wouldn’t have to rely on Him for the path or the final outcome we would just see it ourselves and do it on our own. We have to rely on God in every circumstance and remember that He knows the plans…we are just to follow them.

  23. 173
    Alicia says:

    AWESOME, Melissa! I am not a “blogger” so to speak…I don’t respond to very many posts but I am compelled to respond…AMEN! and Thank God for people in our generation that seek to rightly divide God’s Word and call things what they are…I think THAT is being authentic in Christ. I am in an area of the nation where “being comfortable” and “relevant” now being referred to as “emergent” is sought after if not, shouted from the hilltops…what a breath of fresh air to knkow that there are some in my generation that will know God’s Word and apply it.

  24. 174
    Marina says:

    Thanks, Melissa for the honest thoughts. They were thought provoking, and stirred something in me (and not just a thought that I should actually consider a fresh reading of Leviticus myself!).

    I think that the best way I can explain myself is with a parallel to my daily/earthly life.

    What I thought about while reading was how, in some areas of my life, I have plenty of practice with being authentic while also being respectful. I may very well go into my boss and express my frustration or disagreement with an action or decision of hers…but I would NEVER do it in a way that wasn’t bathed in respect and deference.

    I am blessed enough to have a boss in my job that I actually DO respect. However genuine my respect for her may be, however, a primary motivation for demonstrating that respect is probably more along the lines of not wanting to anger or offend her. Afterall, I do not have complete assurance of her magnanimous and loving forgiveness no matter how I may err.

    I suppose that, in some ways, my sometimes casual communication with God (I’m pretty sure I’ve been “ticked” at God myself before…) is contributed to by my comfort with and perhaps belief in His unconditional love of me. And although I can be thankful for that belief, and grateful for that love, my choice to be deferential to Him can be (and, I think at least for myself should be) motivated by love for Him, not out of fear of retribution or judgment.

    So, where I was going with this was just thanks for a new awareness about what motivates how I speak to my Lord. What has also come into view as I’ve typed this out (my first “comment” on the blog!), is an inspiration to also be mindful and prayerful about what does motivate me when I speak to my boss, or other such persons here on earth. I mean, speaking to her/them with respect is great…but speaking to them with respect because my heart is motivated by a giving sense of love? Even better.

    Thanks again and blessings to you all!
    Kansas City

  25. 175
    Jody says:

    Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick ~ God is going to reach many hearts through you. I love it when God gives you a post!

  26. 176
    georgia tarheel says:

    Great post Melissa! It took me a long time to read it because it was so full of wisdom and great knowledge (and because my two year old was singing “If you’re happy and you know it”…only it was “If you need a happy nose, clap your hands.”)

    I always love to read what you write. Not only for wealth of knowlege that you share with us, but because you are so real. Your “dry bones” and your casual attitude toward sin…so easy to relate to…almost like you were talking about me. Thank you for the encouragement, the honesty and the love for your God!

    And now, “if you’re happy in your nose, pull your hands.”


  27. 177
    Anonymous says:

    When I was young, the choir at the church I attended would sing this song before the service started:

    “The Lord is in His holy temple,
    The Lord is in His holy temple:
    Let all the earth keep silent–
    Let all the earth keep silent
    Before Him.
    Keep silent, keep silent, before Him.”

    It set the tone for the whole service. The people I was with were missionaries, serving the Lord with all their hearts, and this holy reverence for Almighty God is something I miss today.

    Thank you, all you Moore girls, for your love for Scripture, for your love for people, and for your willingness to share so eloquently!Joy

  28. 178
    Anonymous says:

    The older I get and seeing how the world in which we live is constantly changing, it gives me peace and comfort knowing that God’s Word never changes!

  29. 179
    Anonymous says:

    You have such strong wisdom! Thank you so much. Needed to read that this afternoon. You are so right about our peace over sin in our lives. That has been my prayer lately…to grieve and dispise the sin that the enemy entangles us with. When we that comes into play, we will have a stronger desire and passion to flee and resist. Much love.

    Heather Millington
    Birmingham, AL.

  30. 180
    Anonymous says:

    and now i have to find some n t wright….

  31. 181
    Jill_in_AL says:

    Excellent post, MMF. Very informative, excellently made spot-on points and fully thought provoking.

    I’m 40 so that makes me in between your generation and your mom’s generation; however, I completely get your point about seemingly lack of reverence and venting on God.

    Erring on the side of reverence in our actions, our tongues, our dress and our posture is never unnoticed by God I think.

    Great to hear from you! Keep on keeping it really real in Hotlanta! J

  32. 182
    Rebecca says:

    So right on!

  33. 183
    Sandy says:

    Thank you for sharing this insight so thoroughly and with such vulnerability. Our God has used your words to convict me of taking His grace and mercy too lightly, and to remind me of His sovereignty.

  34. 184
    Monica Chadwell says:

    Excellent. Thank you.

  35. 185
    Anonymous says:

    You have hit on something I’ve had on my heart for so long but I don’t always know how to express it. I came to the Lord out of another faith, one with much pomp and cirmumstance but never taught me about true salvation. At any rate, I tell the people in my church that one thing I was taught that I think is lacking in Bible Believing churches is RESPECT for the One True God. There are times we can and should approach Him as Abba Father but always with the thought in mind that He DESERVES our utmost RESPECT. Bill Cosby once told his TV son “I brought you into this world and I can take you out!” Is that a good analogy? Someone else who gave very wise advise that I try to practice and pass along all the time is a lady named Beth Moore :)! In one of our studies, she advised that if someone offends us, we should “tell on them to God first”. Well, when I am angry with God, I owe it to Him to let Him know first- I do believe He wants us to tell Him everything- and then if I feel I need help working that thing out, I may tell one other close confidante. To be honest, though, I don’t really like to share that particular emotion because I never want it to be misinterpreted as disrespect for Almighty God. He means to much to me for that. Thanks for your post- God can get nothing but glory from it!!
    Your Boston Siesta.

  36. 186
    Anonymous says:

    p.s. i mentioned the n t wright after reading your blogger profile..just thought i needed to clarify that it wasn’t from reading and thinking about your post….keep posting and living in a manner that honors The Lord- Phil 1:27 (i just thought of your mother’s comment on life today: “just what did she mean by that?” so i’m glad i “clarified” ) a n d….so much fun to read all the happy S.A. comments!!!

  37. 187
    Anonymous says:

    Since reading your post, I have been listening to Matt Redman’s Face Down. This morning in worship service, we sang Revelation Song by Kari Jobe. I came home, have been listening to both songs, and rereading your post about anxiously awaiting for ALL of God’s righteous acts to be revealed.

  38. 188
    Melissa says:


    I love reading your blogs and feeling like I am an official “siesta!” I am so glad you are in Atlanta…I live in Alpharetta and love it. I attend North Point Comminity church. Where do you and your husband attend? There are so many great churches here…. 🙂

    Hope you are starting to feel at home in the ATL.


  39. 189
    Emily says:

    Good word! I heard mention of this post at the fiesta and I am so glad I read it!

    Also, so fun to get to “know” you a little this past weekend! Your personality seems so different from your sisters, each of you so cute!

  40. 190
    Vicki says:

    I’ve been wrestling with these same issues recently. Last week I was listening to sermon online by a well respected young leader that was laced with what I consider profane or at the very least crude language. I’ve had quite the discussions with some of my under 35 age friends about it. I think it’s the attitude that bothers me most. “I say these kind of words – deal with it!” How does that demonstrate spiritual maturity or the honor and mutual submission that scripture demands of believers?

    On the other hand – it’s easy to point out the speck and totally miss the log. In light of some of the sad revelations in the church world recently – I’m begging God to convict, refine and heal me of sin that I may not consider the “big ones”. To be holy as He is holy. God help us all.

  41. 191
    Faith says:

    This is really good food for thought. I agree with you that our generation can take the concept of authenticity too far, even using it sometimes as an excuse. So hard to find a balance … yet we need to. As one of my seminary’s past presidents said, “It’s easier to go to a consistent extreme than to live at the center of biblical tension.” I think this applies to so many areas of theology and life! But we do need to seek to remain at that biblical center rather than letting ourselves swing on a pendulum.

  42. 192
    Gayle @ thewestiecrew says:

    Melissa, this is seriously one of the best posts I have ever read.

    I don’t say that lightly either.

    What a good word on so many levels.

  43. 193
    L says:

    Thank you. I’m so glad you made this post.

  44. 194
    Retta says:

    “Faith said…
    This is really good food for thought. I agree with you that our generation can take the concept of authenticity too far, even using it sometimes as an excuse. So hard to find a balance … yet we need to. As one of my seminary’s past presidents said, “It’s easier to go to a consistent extreme than to live at the center of biblical tension.” I think this applies to so many areas of theology and life! But we do need to seek to remain at that biblical center rather than letting ourselves swing on a pendulum.

    August 25, 2008 11:59 AM”

    I agree with Faith…

  45. 195
    Mary Watkins says:

    Hey Melissa,
    Please keep sharing the details of what you do when you study the Word. We are instructed when we play tennis, for instance, to find someone more experienced or well trained to play against. My goodness, you have heard the Word throughout your life and now combined with your training in Biblical exegesis, you are able to coach us…to help us refine our Bible study. The benefit being a deeper understanding of the Word.

    Thank you for making me think. Thank you for caring enough to share what is on your heart. You have the gift of teaching and I am thankful for your input.

    What an honor to meet you, Amanda, and your mother in San Antonio.

    In His grip,

    [email protected]

  46. 196
    Di says:

    WOW. TRUTH. How refreshing…

  47. 197
    Dori says:

    Awesome subject! I love that I have a personal relationship with my Savior, but I pray that I always remember His Holiness. My mind is full of thoughts…my prayers full of praise and gratitude.

  48. 198
    Anonymous says:

    Been reflecting on these verses in the Bible: Luke 22:44, John 11:35, Matthew 26:37-38, and John 12:27.

  49. 199
    laura*cat says:

    This was great! I attempted to read Leviticus my self just a couple of weeks ago & was overwhelmed & quite frankly – bored! I will be trying this "new-found" methodology asap! 🙂

  50. 200
    Ashton says:

    Hi Melissa!
    Well, I was sitting in FBC church today and I’ve never ever have accidentally turned to this book of the bible but I did…Obadiah! I remember your Mom mentioning how you wanted to teach out of that book. I thought of you. Allison

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