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I have officially started a blog in order to keep my writings in one cohesive place.  I will still continue to post on Facebook with links and updates to any information on CaringBridge; however, I would love to have you follow me through this new and easier avenue!

My first post is reflective of the Fall series I will be teaching this semester on “Scandalous Love.”  This will be a Bible study on the unorthodox, unconventional, and unabashed way in which God embraced the outcasts and loved even the most scandalous of sinners.  Just as He does today.

Classes are held Wednesday night at 7:00 pm at the Crown Ridge campus of Oak Hills Church in the South Room starting on September 16th.  Bible classes and childcare are available for all ages of children during that time as well.  You can register online at http://Oakhillschurch.com/register or you can just show up at the first class and sign in.  This class is not exclusive to church members – any and all are welcome!

I thank each of you for your encouragement during the long, hard years of this journey – you inspire me to continue to seek God through my writings.

2000 Feature Photography Pulitzer Prize REUNIONMay 3, 1999 Kosovar refugee Agim Shala, 2 years old, is passed through the barbed wire fence into the hands of grandparents at the camp run by United Arab Emirates in Kukes, Albania. The members of the large Shala family were reunited here after fleeing Prizren in Kosovo during the conflict. . (The grandparents had just crossed the border at Morina). The relatives who just arrived had to stay outside the camp until shelter was available. The next day members of the family had tents inside. The fence was the scene of many reunions. When the peace agreement was signed, they returned to Prizren to find their homes only mildly damaged. There were tears of joy and sadness from the family as the children were passed through the fence, symbolic of the innocence and horror of the conflict.
2000 Feature Photography Pulitzer Prize
REUNION May 3, 1999

Scandalous Love

“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand.” Henri Nouwen

I had surgery two weeks ago.  It was a planned endometriosis surgery that should have happened years ago.  Somehow surgery for me was not on my to-do list.

My life has been a little busy the past five years….

But as I sit here writing from a bed with my computer at an angle so that it does not touch my glued and stitched up stomach, I am reminded of the greatest commandment – love.  

The term ‘Christyn-sitting’ became my unexpected miracle of the week.  My potpourri of friends, the very friends whom have sacrificed great portions of their lives in an effort to transform the Taylor family chaos into calmness, put on their superman capes (or superwoman as this case would require), once again.  

They took shifts watching over me, bringing my family daily meals, caring for and transporting my children, and categorizing and delivering my grocery needs.  They called me, texted me, and stopped by multiple times daily to check on me. Surprise Starbucks runs, Cupcake Couture treats, and favorite restaurant meals were gifted simply to make me smile. My saint posse of friends even scrubbed my ‘not-so-clean’ home.  

Bless them.

I may need surgery more often….

This support group provided all of my needs and then some without my asking.

They didn’t pre-counsel me on the merits of timely medical procedures, or evaluate my future pay-back abilities.  They just served.

And I felt loved.  Serious, heart-felt love.

Years of living in the hospital taught me countless lessons – most of which were quite humbling to my prideful, former ‘have-all-the-answers’ self.  

As I was given a front row seat to suffering, I recognized a universal need – something simple yet quite profound:

Those in pain did not need words of advice – they need the touch of a tender hand, the warmth of a cup of tea, or the tears of a compassionate heart.  Such simple gestures illicit powerful gratefulness from the victim of a bleeding heart.

That lesson came flooding to my mind as I read about the current refugee crisis and viewed the overseas pictures of toddler’s lifeless bodies washed upon shore.  

My soul wept.  

I wept for the parents, I wept for the generations of broken beings desperate to seek asylum, but mostly I wept for lost opportunities.

These grieving families did not need a Biblical sermon or a lecture on the legality of crossing foreign borders.  

They needed a home.  

A safe haven with food and drinkable water, accompanied by welcoming arms.

Because that IS Jesus.

I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me,” Matthew 40.

Jesus healed the ‘sinners’, He touched the ‘untouchables’, He embraced the ‘unworthy’.

Jesus LOVED.

Without reviewing resumes of acceptability, or green cards of legitimacy, and without interviewing the worthiness of candidates,

Our blemish-less Savior LOVED the blemished.   

Fully, completely and without reservation.

Scandalously.  

So my unexpected miracle of ‘Christyn-sitting’ became a vivid reminder of why the greatest of all human gestures is love.  I thank my friends for showering me with that gift over and over – just as Jesus would have done.

“I was sick and you looked after me,” Matthew 25:36.

Thank you Lord for Your scandalous mercy of love.

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3 thoughts on “

  1. Christyn. Thank you for your message of LOVE. Wish I could be there Weds. We have 3rd chemo treatment. So glAd you are on the mend and blogging. You minister and inspire.

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  2. Dearest Christyn, You have my prayers for healing as you’ve come through surgery and also as you lead once again in “example” of these valuable lessons on Love shown to us through Christ. I know your mission/lessons will be blessed and will bless so many. Thank you for who you are and the example you set. Love in Him- Locke P.

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