Friday, September 16, 2011

A Night with Shampa Rice

Shampa Rice spoke at church this week! She is so sweet. She has a wonderful gift of Loving in Christ's Name. And how much more should we learn and sharpen ourselves from people who actually LIVE their Faith? From the age of 12 she lived in Calcutta right across the street from Mother Theresa's headquarters. It was the impact of the poverty and the Love being shown my Mother Theresa that influenced Shampa's heart. She too wanted to Love the poor, heart broken, and lonely. This is exactly what she spoke about that night she joined us...it was about Loving others. She didn't talk about gaining or asking God for Power, or to claim our authority in Jesus,, she didn't speak about how to plant churches, heal the sick, or have the right combination of godly living techniques to make God do what we think He should do.

She taught Revelation 2:5. "Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works." And what was our first works and the greatest commandment? It is LOVE and living for Christ with a passion. The concept of seeking God's Love and Loving others with that Love given to us is truly the point of life. There is nothing stronger or more eternal than Love. I believe it is the only thing worth all our struggles and one of the main targets of the enemy. But it is impossible to Love on our own strength. We have to look into the Face of Love, God Himself, to help us know how to Love.

Here are some neat points Shampa made:

* His Love will come out even if we don't feel spiritual.
* God's Love will always over rule our feelings. Even if we miss the opportunity.
* You don't have to pray for power...His Love IS power!!!
* Christ will recognize us because of His Love in us.
* Shampa told us about a story about a man she heard of who went into a coma. He instantly was with Jesus and he looked around and saw a multitude of people. He saw Jesus going up to each person and asking the same question to each...."Did you learn to Love?"
* We (mankind) are capable of doing so many bad things...murder, rape, steal...on our own accord, but the one thing we need help with is to Love.
* His Love will always make room for HOPE to come in.
* WE ARE ONLY CALLED TO LOVE. Not judge, not fix people, not change people, just Love.
* She said we should not be concerned at all about church planting. Many people asked her to speak about church planting and she has no idea what to say. All of her churches have come about simply by Living the Bible....LIVING IN LOVE. Everything else just happened as a result of this. They never set out to build churches, only to Love.

So what is Shampa's unique secret weapon besides the Bible and Loving you may ask? It is hugging! People line up for hours just to get a hug from her. It may sound so silly, but God has given her a gift of being His arms around the hurting, lost, and broken, and the neat thing is that it is real. You can feel God's Love when you hug her. She is the ONLY and I mean O-N-L-Y person besides me that I would let hug my husband for that long without busting out my karate chop moves.