Walking. Thinking. Serving.

“By Grace, today I fast from the lie that my calling isn’t great enough because God isn’t calling for people great in skills, schooling, or spotlights — He’s calling those simply great in community, in confession, in communion, in courage, great in Christ.  Today I will do ordinary things with extraordinarily great love.  We repent of wanting to be greater instead of loving greater.”

-a Lenten Prayer

I am convicted by this prayer.  God calls those in courage to love greater, rather than work towards greatness.  Do I have courage enough to love greater, and lay aside self-pleasing ambitions?  A challenge comes in the form of a request from friends, requiring precious time.  Jesus is behind it and, a night later, I find myself sanding down chipped paint on baseboards for friends and their new home.  I sit contented in the company of a wonderful sister in Christ who strives to live and love God in her workplace and within the hopes she carries for her new home and family.  We grow between shushing sandpaper and the Lord is present.  A big hug goodbye later, and a handful of homemade sourdough bread for the ride home, I find myself pulling off a chunk and I smile.  I remember a verse that began its work earlier in the week, sanding down and smoothing the rough edges of my tight-fisted time, “… breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts…”  (Acts 2:46-47, emphasis mine).  For one night, I am given the courage to lay aside my agenda and say yes to helping others, and then I am blindsided by a night of community, confession, communion, courage, and Christ.  The bread I am eating is holy communion — is the eucharist — the thanksgiving offered up in courage and eaten in grace.

And I smile at my week, my hours of work filled with grace within CrossTown.  I see the children learning what it means to share what they are grateful for at the Interact Club; I see the nod of a store manager, more than excited to become a partner in a citywide endeavor that will bring hope to our community through a day of free resources and the push for empowerment through blessing; I see the wrestlings of theological discussion among Sunday School classes, deliberating on the Kingdom of Heaven, and echoing the Father’s heart of love for our broken world; I see a movement.  

I have caught sight of a glory that comes through those who take up courage to love greatly, and lay aside their desires for greatness, and I am left in wonder.  My heart is in constant discussion and dependence on the Lord, and I see that he has not only called me to reach out for such a time as this, but to be blessed to witness his love on the move in a corner of the Southwest heart of a nation that merely becomes a dot on the map of eternity in the palm of our Lord’s hand.  Are there words for such a beautiful experience?  How do I have opportunity to witness a miracle and call it my job?  It is more.  It is a calling, backed by prayer and an unseen witness of intercessors; and this is my question: Are you the one?  Are you the intercessor who has asked the Lord to open my eyes to see that his hand is very present and real in the lives of those I meet?  Thank you.  Thank you for interceding for me and for CrossTown.

I am so emboldened to seek out those who love greatly.  This is not the traditional support letter, but this 2016 year has me spellbound under discovery: I am witnessing the Lord work deeper in the hearts of those around us.  However, it also occurs to me that my intentionality to seek out those to pray on our behalf has slipped under the frantic need to gather financial support and maintain updates.  So, I take this time to invite you to contact me at my email: tessa@crosstownlc.com.  We would like to build a list of those who are prepared to intercede for us this year.  We are in need of individuals who will hold us up with specific requests as the needs arise, or hold us accountable before the Lord to remember who He is in the midst of our fruitfulness or fallow grounds.  Take this time to consider taking up the mantle.  We wait in anticipation for your reply and your partnership.


Tessa Valadez

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