Monday, November 07, 2005

The View from Up

I took this photo on the way down from Big Bear Lake in the San Bernadino mountains a couple of weeks ago. It was amazing to only see the clouds looking down over the San Bernadino Valley...kind of spooky actually. It really looked like the view from an airplane window...

I was in Big Bear leading worship for a women's retreat. I haven't led worship like that for a long, long time so it was refreshing to be in that role again. It is still a bit out of my comfort zone, but I was grateful for the opportunity to spend time with some precious women. It also really made me miss the days way back when I was a part of worship teams in college and in Turkey. So many of my memories from Turkey are wrapped up in a worship-filled room upstairs from a restaurant that was our church. It was NOTHING like a church here in America. The building did not belong to us, the chairs had to be set up and torn down each week, the smell of the food from the Turkish restaurant downstairs constantly drifted into the windows....In the winter, it was cold. In the summer, it was blazing hot. The toilet rarely worked properly. Definitely not conditions comparable to church buildings in America. However, it was in that building our church came together to rejoice over what God had done, to grieve together, and to pray fervently for many to come to the knowledge of Christ in Turkey. It was a special place of worship and an oasis in a city of 18 million people living under the veil of Islam. My memories of that place are sweet...and they are fresh on my mind when I am back in that role of worship leader. What a precious experience it was to praise Jesus Christ in a place where He is not known. I pray our lives will be constantly filled with the true worship of Him. No matter the place, may His praises be on our lips and in our hearts...

3 comments:

Rod said...
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Love but Hate said...
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Katie B said...

Nicole,
I loved the reminder of the church in Turkey. I, too, had some of the best worship in my life (especially when Jeff Berry came to lead as well). Perhaps it was the clinging to Jesus in an unfamiliar place or the removal of comfort that we previously had. I don't know, but it was great! Everything I do now with worship is with a hope that I can recapture that time in my life--but you can't. So, I am left to grow from it and cherish the past. Thanks again for the reminder.