Tuesday, January 28, 2014

:where feet may fail:


"You call me out upon the watersThe great unknown where feet may failAnd there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You've never failed and You won't start now

Spirit lead me where my trust is without bordersLet me walk upon the watersWherever You would call meTake me deeper than my feet could ever wanderAnd my faith will be made strongerIn the presence of my Savior"



This song (Oceans) has just been ministering to my heart so much lately! It is such an amazing picture: Jesus wooing us away away from everything we know to come out and walk beside Him... on the water, in the waves, in the unknown. It's scary to think of doing that, honestly. I'm the kind of girl who likes sitting on the beach and watching the waves. Maybe I'll get in up to my waist every now and then. But I like the beach. But what if I would step out of that? What is really waiting for us out in the unknown? This ocean, for me, maybe its different for you, is intimacy. Its scary being asked to take hold of someone's hand to walk out on [waves], to navigate uncharted waters. But why is it scary? I should be excited beyond belief that a certain Someone is ardently pursuing my heart! He wants to take me out into His waters, where He is in full control and all I can really do is lean on Him. My feet will fail out there. I cannot rely on my strength. I need His love for me to enter me and turn into a love for Him. Because my love will fail. My feet fail in His oceans. They suit me just fine on the beach, where I may stick my toes in and get a tiny tiny tiny taste of what He desires.  Do I really want such an intimate relationship with Him as He wants with me? Yes. So, Lord, I say: lead me where my trust is without any borders! None at all! I want to be captured in Your freedom! Strip me of me and implant YOU inside of me. Give me that desire to dive deep into Your presence, Your person of intimate love and radical holiness! Make my faith in You so much stronger in Your presence! Because You've called me. I love because You first loved. I'm Yours. You're mine.



"We may be in uncharted waters, but my God created the seas." -paraphrased quote




Monday, January 20, 2014

:do the right thing:



Isn't it strange that people can talk about doing the right thing, and say with over-exaggerated confidence that when the opportunity arrives they will simply "do the right thing"? Isn't it funny that we say these things and then *poof* here comes the opportunity... and soon its a missed opportunity?  That we always seem to be so sure of ourselves, and then we're wondering what happened. We thought we were strong enough, confident enough to come through and show the world how its done, and then we're sitting here empty, not quite sure why we didn't follow through. I've done that before. I've talked that talk, saying the 'right things' and have been sure that the next time I saw whoever I would learn from my mistakes and do it 'right' this time around. And then I'm pouring out my miserable heart to a listening ear and sorrowfully complaining of how I 'just couldn't do it' and how I've failed.

There's a reason why we keep failing at 'doing the right thing', wether that is speaking kindly, behaving in a right manner, or sharing Jesus. We've made 'doing the right thing' all about the doing. Its the 'right thing' and therefore we want to be right. Personally I've never wanted to be in the wrong. I've been in arguments that exist simply because I wanted to be right and I was going to show that other person how wrong they were in the process.  But I can never simply "just do it", to use a popular phrase, because ...*shocker*... I can't. We all say we can. But we can't.  There is only one who really can.

Jesus said "I am the way..."  He truly is the only Way we can 'do the right thing'! I have tried in my own strength to do the right thing simply because it is right... maybe I haven't done it to honor Jesus and give Him glory through my actions.  If this is really all about Him then it should never be about us.  It sounds simple, but it is. He never changes. He follows up on His word every single time. He doesn't fail... but I do. I'm the one who say Jesus is inside of me and tells everyone to watch how I do the right thing and then I fail. Because it wasn't Him. It was me. If I'm truly in Christ 'doing the right thing' is simply nature. Its a built in thing. I don't have to muster it up. All I have to do is deny myself and follow Him. Because, really, the only thing that keeps me from doing the right thing is me, strangely enough. I don't have to push and try and pull and keep determining to do this in my own strength. Because I've figured out that, in reality, my strength stinks. And (sorry if this offends you), you're strength stinks too. Being in Christ and letting Him live through you is the only way you can ever just do the right thing. Because when its Jesus, you're not mustering up the strength because it's the right thing, you're just loving Him, and everything else is just an outflow of that love.

{the time is always right to do what is right. -martin luther king jn}

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

:burn:

{some thoughts derived from listening to mr. vogel}

i want my generation to be a generation on fire for Jesus Christ. so on fire with the holy spirit that people can't help but stop and stare and follow us as we go about living on fire. people love to see things burn. i love staring, mesmerized, into our fireplace. it's a different sight when a car is going up in flames on the side of the road. people can't help but want another glimpse.  i want us to be so on fire, so in flames, even if it hurts, burns, and tears us apart, for the glory of our God. that's how i want to be, and how i want my generation to be. so on fire for Jesus that people just look at me and watch me burn. i want to burn for Him.  it would be nice if the people watching caught on fire too, but if all i am is a testimony to God's grace, power, and almighty love, then that's okay. because who i really want to see me burn is Jesus.

"And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed." -exodus 3.2

Saturday, January 11, 2014

:intimacy:





I can want gifts from the Lord, and I can want to walk in His Spirit, and I can want to bear fruit in my life, but if I don't have intimacy none of that matters.   If I don't have intimacy with Jesus I can't bear His name with the full authority of a girl who knows her King. If I don't have intimacy with my God how can I truly say "I am all for Him", "I'd give up everything for Him", "I love Him"?

I can feel the tug of His love on my heart - I have. I can know what I am called to do - I am. But if I do have a real, intimate relationship with the king of kings every single day than what is it worth? Is head knowledge what my goal is? Or is life abandonment? Why would I give up my life for someone I do not know, I do not love?  I have seen others who talk the talk. I have seen people who walk the walk and would die if they didn't have more of Jesus. In her newest book, Heidi Baker, missionary to Mozambique, says "When we spend time in the secret place, our passion and hunger for Jesus grows. It is only as we abide in His presence that the most precious treasures can be born. This is much better than work! More is accomplished by spending time in God's presence than by doing anything else." I want this to be what people see in me. That my passion and hunger for Jesus is cultivated by being immersed in His presence!  It can only be accomplished through intimacy. And whats more! When we come to Him in the secret place we find all we need! In Him is fullness of joy [psalm 16.11]!   When we were in California this past week I heard a song that I just love! The lyrics go "there is joy in the holy ghost".  Its so true!

:intimacy = fruitfulness: