Friday, March 27, 2015

A Heart of Worship

I woke with this song ringing in my head.  It's words are the cry of my heart today.  What is your theme song for this day?

Colton Dixon, More of You:

Thursday, March 26, 2015


Are you feeling numb? Do you wonder, why? What is it? Question for you: Are you repressing pain?

It does not have to be pain in the present. It can be pain from the long ago past, the not so long ago past, the recent past.

Often when things turn around for good in our lives or we leave out of a painful experience or experiences there is the danger of forgetting. Just walking away from what happened and not grieving. That grief, that pain does not disappear no matter how much we want to be "over it".

 Are your emotions feeling flat or numb? Are you repressing pain?  Let yourself grieve.  Grief doesn't respect our schedules or timetables.  It doesn't care about our loved-one's schedule, timetable, or season of life.  It will impose itself without asking.  There is a purpose though.  Your pain calls out to God.  He desires to heal you.  Even if you lack the desire, the will, the motivation to turn to Him I challenge you to turn to Him by faith and begin your healing process.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Nothing to Offer Him...Except For Brokenness

I'm haunted by the words of a song. They run over and over in my mind and communicate the cry of my heart to Jesus. I want to share them with you today.

 Kari Jobe: Find you on my knees.

Troubles chasing me again. Breaking down my best defense. I'm looking, God, I'm looking for You. Weary just wont let me rest. And fear is filling up my head. I'm longing God, I'm longing for You.

But I will find you in the place I'm in. Find you when I'm at my end. Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.
 You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty. When I am weak, when I am lost and searching I'll find you on my knees.

 So what if sorrow shakes my faith, And what if heartache still remains? I'll trust you, my god I'll trust you. Cause you are faithful and I will...

 Find you in the place I'm in, Find you when I'm at my end, Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness. 
 You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty, When I am weak, when I am lost and searching, Find you on my knees, my knees,

When my hope is gone,
When the fear is strong,
When the pain is real,
When its hard to heal,
When my faith is shaken,
When my heart is broken,
And when my joy is stolen,
 God I know that...

You lift me, you'll never leave me searching, You lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty,
 Find you in the place I'm in. Find you when I'm at my end, Find you when there's nothing left of me to offer you except for brokenness.
 You'll lift me up, you'll never leave me thirsty. When I am weak, you'll never leave me thirsty, when I am weak, when I am lost and searching I'll find you on my knees. 

Here's a link to listen to the song:

The work I do allows me to see the brokenness and depravity in humanity.  It allows me to see the brokenness and depravity in me as well.  All of us experience the hardships of life whether they be emotional, relational, financial, social or whatever they be we all live in broken bodies and in broken relationships and in a broken world.  What is there to hope in if not in Christ?  I've tried so many things in my 40 years.  I've seen others try so many things and ways to fix the emptiness, that spot that was created for God in Christ.  If only we could see through our "individuality".  It is this that gets in the way of faith and trust and surrender.  Peter, a disciple of Christ struggled with this as well.  Peter experienced the strong pull of his own interests as he watched Christ be crucified and walked away from the cross, lost and disorientated, ashamed and afraid for his life.  And yet, Jesus, knew His struggle and next to the seashore reminded him some days later to stand back and see what to really be ashamed of and afraid of  and what his purpose really was.  His purpose was Not his "individuality" and his earthly interests but the love of God for humanity and the truth of humanity's need for Jesus.

People will not make us happy.  People will frustrate us as we frustrate them.  People will disappoint as we will disappoint them.  Another human cannot fill us up to the point of contentment.  Relationships are work...tireless work.  Getting along is tough sometimes and at other times it is less hard but life doesn't provide a smooth journey and it is at these times (which are often), us humans can begin to believe that it is the ugliness in the souls of others that is making ourselves ugly or tired or frustrated or disappointed or whatever thing we don't want to see about ourselves.  In truth we are in these moments seeing our own fallenness/sin nature and our limited definition of love.  See most of us have this small circle within ourselves in which we allow just the characteristics in others that feel good to us and serve our idea of what is "lovable" or worthy of love in them from us.  If their behavior or personality falls outside our circle of acceptableness we reject them (withhold ourselves) and in effect withhold God's love from them as well.

Oswald Chambers comments on this in My Utmost For His Highest, "Jesus has some extraordinarily peculiar sheep: some that are unkempt and dirty, some that are awkward or pushy, and some that have gone astray! But it is impossible to exhaust God’s love, and it is impossible to exhaust my love if it flows from the Spirit of God within me. The love of God pays no attention to my prejudices caused by my natural individuality. If I love my Lord, I have no business being guided by natural emotions— I have to feed His sheep. We will not be delivered or released from His commission to us."

With love as our first calling, we can become worn, tired, pained, weak, fearful.  We can lose direction as we pursue loving others in Christ, and become filled with sorrow and longing for change and reconciliation.  It is here we may struggle to sense God's presence with us.  We may even begin to feel abandoned by God and want to run to things this world can provide to comfort ourselves, but it is when we feel this that we are in exactly the right place.  God is there in that place of brokenness with us.  Don't trust your fear in this place.  Trust the character of God and who He tells us He is in His word.  Don't run from this place of humility.  Allow God to work in you and through you right in your brokenness.  God will expand your definition of love by teaching you that you are loved and safe with Him when you are at your ugliest and you will be able to provide that same comfort to those in your life who are living out their brokenness/sin nature in one form or another in your life.

Note: I am not advocating to withhold boundaries or self-care in any way.  In fact, God's love is often directed to others through me in these ways.  I am mainly talking about withholding ourselves from a person or people that we don't feel we can show love to because they are unappealing/unacceptable to us in some way (i.e. neediness, mentally disordered, poor, ignorant, annoying, poor behaviors, emotionally unstable/moody, angry, abusive, addicted,  physically unattractive, etc).  We can safely love those listed above through action and a commitment to feed Christ's sheep.