Kathy Haecker

Kathy Haecker

Thursday, 16 October 2014 20:02

The Last Room in the House

Somewhere in my growing up years, I ran across this religious tract or pamphlet that I never forgot.  Its purpose was to encourage Christian young people give all of themselves to God.  It used the analogy of our lives being like a house that had many rooms and closets and that we didn’t want to leave Christ in the living room as a guest, seated in the parlor.  The little booklet encouraged being honest and open with God and letting Him see the dirty corners behind the fridge, the overstuffed closets that was brimming with outdated objects of our affections, and even the bathroom, where we took off our dirty laundry.  As we allow Him in “our” rooms, hopefully we would recognize His rightful ownership of the property and begin to enjoy our lives with Him as the Master of the house.

Monday, 07 July 2014 19:25

Getting Some Much Needed Rest

Hebrews 10:14

 

For by that one offering He forever made perfect those who are being made holy.

 

As one who has spent 61 years trying to be good enough, this verse gives me hope, peace and joy.  Between my own heart wanting to perform for others and God, my difficult childhood, and an obvious physical disability, I spent much of my life trying to become perfect so that I would not be found unworthy of love and acceptance. Influences from my family, church, and teachers prodded me along in the deception that I could achieve perfection if I just tried hard enough, worked long enough, and was competent enough. 

 

So I spent the bulk of my adult life trying to prove to others that I had paid the price and was deserving of respect, admiration, and influence.  What I failed to notice is that Jesus, by His sacrifice on the cross, had already done for me what I had spent my life trying to achieve.  This verse says that He has forever made me perfect in God’s eyes.  It also says that I am still in process, being made holy.

 

I am learning to rest in the fact that if He can make me perfect, He can also make me holy.  I am likely continue in Bible study, prayer, and church attendance but have come to realize that unless He grants me repentance and change, it is not going to happen (Acts 11:18).  In the end, He will get the glory as it should be. This leaves me free to enjoy our relationship, love others, and get some much needed rest. 

 

Thursday, 01 May 2014 21:28

Be the Church

If you read popular Christian books about waiting on God to send you a spouse, you will eventually hear the suggestion that you “become the kind of person you would want to marry”.   That is probably good advice because you will be preoccupied and productive as you are becoming better marriage material yourself. 

 

Is it possible the same can be true about finding the church you should attend?  I live in an area where there are church buildings on almost every corner.  They have labels like traditional, missional, seeker-friendly, and orthodox.  Some are mega large while others are small enough to meet in homes.  Some cater to the younger crowd with rock bands and coffee, while older folks seem to prefer more traditional services and knowing where their funeral will be held.

Monday, 16 December 2013 15:36

Good News... For All the People!

As the Christmas season comes each year, I try to read the story of the birth of Jesus in each book where  we find it in the Bible.  The story in Luke 1 and 2 is the longest and probably the most famous.  Matthew 1 gives us a very brief narrative following the genealogy of Jesus.  Mark skips it entirely and John begins  his account with a testimony about Jesus but no details about His birth.

Monday, 29 October 2012 16:35

Christ in You: The Hope of Glory

I first heard this part of Colossians 1:27 “Christ in You…the hope of Glory”  in 1976 when Major Ian Thomas came all the way from England to teach at a small Baptist church in deep East Texas where my new husband and I were members.  We were used to a “visiting preacher” coming every year to preach a “revival”.  They usually held revivals in the springtime and this was no exception.  We were expecting someone to come tell us again how to “be saved” or that we needed to repent and turn from our sins.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012 17:16

Do I Worship My Own Approval?

When a counseling intern sits down to write a blog that he/she knows is going to be published on a website that supervisors will read, clients might read, and potential clients might stumble across, all kinds of thoughts go through the head of that intern.  Is my writing going to be doctrinally accurate? Is it going to be inspiring? Is it going to be helpful?  Will what I write make sense?  Will it make me look like a spiritual first grader?  Do I have anything to say that has not already been said?  Will it bring glory to God? 

 

Taking my cues from Alcoholic Anonymous literature, I decided that my best bet is to stick to writing about where I have experience, strength, and hope.  Maybe I will sound more spiritual if I say that I am going to aim to “comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God” from 2 Corinthians 1:4.  How about the radical thought that others struggle with the same things I struggle with and what God teaches me might also be helpful to them?

Tuesday, 31 July 2012 22:12

God’s Measuring Stick

As I have been trying to get more exercise lately, I have been riding my Schwinn “comfort” bicycle with its padded seat that looks like it goes on a tractor, not a bicycle.  To make sure that I don’t stop before I actually exercise, I bought an odometer so that I can see how fast I am going and how far I have been.  This little device has made me acutely aware of speed and distance as measured with numbers.

 

I can just be as happy as a lark in my less- than- fashionable gym clothes, riding down the bike trail, basking in thoughts of how good I am to be exercising when suddenly, a young athlete whizzes by me.  They are all decked out in the “proper attire” for the sport, on a bike with very skinny tires, and saying irritating things like “passing on your left”. 

Monday, 02 July 2012 16:56

The Biggest “But” in the Bible

 

Many of us who have been reared in the American Evangelical religious system seldom think about how we got there.  As Americans, we have money in our pocket or purse stamped with the words “In God We Trust”, we see a church building on every major street in our city, and celebrate at least 3 National holidays that have strong religious overtones.  It is easy to think that if we were born in America, we are naturally Christians.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012 20:36

When Shame is Your Middle Name

 

For as far back as I can remember, Shame was my middle name.  Of course, that is not hard to imagine if you also grew up in the generation I did and the adults around you used the phrase, “Shame on you!” to control your behavior.  We don’t seem to hear that as much since John Bradshaw and others wrote on shame and its effects during the decades following the 1950’s but it was a fairly common expression when I was growing up.

My shame began at birth.  I only realized this when my mother wrote a chapter for a book for Christian women.  She asked me to listen to the tape and edit the copy for her.  She told the story of her remarkable life and when she got to my birth, the story became sad.  She described her alcoholic mother coming to the hospital intoxicated while her Sunday school class was there visiting.That event, coupled with the fact that she had given me her mother’s name as my middle name, only added to the shame.  Every time one of the relatives called me by all three of my names, I felt a pang of shame.  People in our community and family associated that middle name with dysfunction, sin, rebellion, and addiction.  In addition, I looked like that grandmother so it was not hard to identify with the association that everyone had made with that name.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012 15:19

Family Conflict and Idol Worship

For the last 14 years, I have spent the better part of my career reading police reports and reaching out to provide services to the victims of crimes. During this time, I have noticed some reoccurring themes in the reports involving family conflicts. Situations that become so volatile that someone feels the need to call the police for help can often be attributed to the economy, in-laws, teenagers, and stress. The victim sometimes makes the call, but often it is a neighbor or other relative who is concerned about the yelling, banging into walls, sounds of conflict, or unexplained bruising.

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