Here’s the link to the video shown in this week’s Shiloh; watch it over and over again.

Use this post to comment or ask questions about anything you heard in Shiloh last night.  What questions does this picture bring to mind?  How do you fit sexuality in a community context?  How are you living the single life?  Or the married life?  Any books you recommend on the topic?  Tell us here.

*video: Jake Davis & Paige Souder/photo: Drew Young


The Definition of Community

I’m all about community,
but the truth is we’re missing the opportunity
to be a unit of unity because we refuse to be real,
claiming we need to fully heal before we talk about it.
But we forget that becoming whole is a process
of allowing our mess to be seen.
And I’m not saying that I’ll be able to make you clean,
only God can do that,
but I promise to be there when you get attacked,
because that’s what friends are for.
And I’d be lying if deep in my core,
I didn’t want someone to do the same for me,
’cause, you have to agree, the cry of our hearts is to be accepted.
Not collected, corrected, then rejected,
but to be loved.
And the thing about community is they’re there.
Not sort of or sometimes, but always.
In the wear and tear of everyday life,
or the flare of an overtaking strife,
they’re there to be warriors of prayer and to hear you share,
because they love you.
And I say this from experience, take it.
Don’t just sit, admit defeat, and lose faith.
look for the candle your community lit and follow it.
Commit and receive what they’re giving.
Expose yourself and start living
in this place where you are loved.
For your humor and joy
as well as the sins that try to destroy you are welcome there.
To be shared among a group of people
who support you no matter what.
And I’m not saying it’s going to be easy.
There will be days you want to shut them all out,
but without them, you’re back at square one,
and there’s a lot to be done,
when carrying the weight all alone.
And as humans, we’re prone to hide when our scars are shown,
but don’t, because there’s a beauty about being known fully
by a group of people pulling for you.
And that’s community.
People called into unity standing together,
refusing to be weathered by what tries to deceive,
but standing firm refusing to leave until everyone feels loved.


Shiloh Art, 9.18

Jordyn Elrod’s masterpiece:

When speaking on Adam and Eve in Genesis 2 and 1 Corinthians 12, the idea of the body and community of Christ was here displayed.  Not only is community found in the unity of male and female since “It is not good for man to be alone,” (Gen 2:18) but community is also found when all parts of the Body of Christ are working together, appreciating one another, working for the betterment of God’s kingdom. For the eye is not better than the ear, or the foot better than the hand. We need all the little pieces to create the whole. We were not made to walk through this life alone, but instead hand in hand with those that also love the Lord. This is the power of unity.

Shiloh Art, 8.28

The brillance of Samantha Smith:

Kicking off the first Shiloh with Genesis 1, we get a close up view of creation. We often see the creation as seven separate days of development, but this limits how we view God. This painting expresses the fluid, overarching narrative of God’s awesome creativity and passion for this world and it’s inhabitants.

Shiloh Art, 9.25

Here’s the beautiful work of artist, Kelly Prater.

Her artwork has “gone global” along with the rest of Samford’s campus for GoGlobal Missions Week 2012.   Pictures from real Samford students who served around the world this summer line the edges of a full world atlas, painted with acrylic and paper-mached with tissue paper.  In the center of all of these specific events, the world is the focus; the drive to reach all nations, regardless of where they may fall on our atlas.

Sabbath Frenzy

In case you didn’t know, Sabbath is hard.

Following an awesome sermon on the meaning and application of the holiest of days, life said, “challenge accepted.”  Between a week filled with babysitting, class assignments, three tests, friendships, volunteering, meetings, video-making, and tutoring, I found myself asking how I could possibly find time to squeeze my Sabbath in, much less slow down my ever-turning mind to enjoy it.  It’s weeks like these that remind me of how busy I am, and how that’s not necessarily the best thing for me to be.

There’s a definite disparity between wanting to help others and convincing yourself that others need you; between working and working joyfully; between speed-walking and stopping to look at butterflies; between loving God and being God.  Throughout this week, these truths have been brought to my attention unavoidably.   Should I give something up?  But I like everything I do . . . I just need more time.  I can’t let anyone down . . . I can’t do NOTHING.  Or–is nothing just what I need?

All the while this dialogue replays in my head, I’m wondering why God can’t just give me more hours in a day.  But that’s not the point.  Knowing that I’m not God is.  That I can’t be all things for all people.  I’m a Christian, a sister, a friend, a girlfiend, a worker, and a helper, but I am not God.  If you think about it, this truth is really freeing.  Not only did God free us from the sin that so nastily enslaves, but He also exists as everything and takes care of everyone and is present everywhere so we don’t have to be.  Is He not freaking awesome?

Next time you find yourself dragging you’re babysitting and find yourself dragging a seven-year-old behind you on the sidewalk (or whatever other pickle you find yourself in), remember the world will keep going if you’re five minutes late to that thing you have to be at.  God would appreciate you taking time to admire a butterfly or a fallen leaf every now and then.

“He will beautify the humble with salvation.”  Psalm 149:4b

Oh hey, buggie boo.

-Paige Souder