Count on It

When life becomes too great to bear
And each moment met just furthers despair
When you’re left with no answer or ear to turn to
When failures and regrets all come crashing down on you

Count on the cross
Count on His grace
Count on His providence
To cover all that you face

Count on His goodness
Count on His love
Know for tomorrow
Your faith is enough

Prepared

Just because each step is heavy

Doesn’t mean it’s the wrong way to go

Laboring in each step is building my strength

And preparing me for what I don’t yet know

“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 13:8

Journey

I look on journeys past

And see the change they bore in me

I never would’ve planned these paths

Or the struggles they would bring

The battles are beyond hard

And oft take forever to win

My mind and heart get scarred

Then Your Word carries me back in

I look at journeys past

And see the victories they led me to

I take a deep breath, step out in faith

And set out on my next journey with You

“So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea. The Israelites went up out of Egypt ready for battle.” Exodus 13:18

“He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness for the sake of His name.” Psalm 23:3

Unchanging

Should sorrow come my way

and darkness cover all I see

Should I lose my dreams

And tragedy descend upon me

I’ll cling to You with my last grip

And place all my hope in You

Knowing your heavenly purposes

Prevail regardless of earthly truths

Your love remains the same

Your promises do not change

Devoted

If you love me, scream it from the mountain
If you love me, keep me close at all times
If you love me, believe me and act on your faith
If you love me, put all other loves aside

“Without growing weary, you have persevered and endured many things for the sake of My name. But I have this against you: You have abandoned your first love.” Revelation 2:3-4

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Deutoronomy 6:5

Faith or Works? Yes

Oh faith,

Will you crumble when put to the test?

Will you run and hide when you’re not approved by the rest?

Or will you put into practice all you’ve been shown

Speak boldly, stand strong even when all alone?

Faith without works is dead

Works without faith is misled

Demonstrate your faith by your works instead.

“What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,’ but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” James 2:14-17

Prodigals

Please carry the heavy load of our pasts
So we’d be free to walk along
Your predestined paths
Please cleanse us from our regret and shame
So our mouths would be confident
To share Your good name

“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” Isaiah 1:18

Not I but Christ

Disappointments and heartaches
We can give these to You
And attempt to align how we think
to Your Word and Your truths
So what do You say
About moments that don’t go our way
To remember You are Sovereign
And there are grander purposes at play

“Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.” Ephesians 1:11

If Only, Then Maybe

If the sun had been tilted 2 degrees to the left that day

If the moon had waxed instead of waned

If the ocean tide hadn’t come up so far

And our eyes didn’t glimpse that shooting star

Maybe we wouldn’t have intertwined

Maybe your soul wouldn’t be forever stuck to mine

Maybe our lives would be on a different path

And we’d never have known this inexplicable grasp.

But the sun did shine where it stood

The moon overlooked the night as it should

The tide rolled in the ocean waves

The stars put on a glorious display

With just enough light to capture your gaze

The stage was set for our eternal embrace.

Perfect Love

Your love does not sway
It can’t be altered or taken away
It doesn’t change with each passing season
It knows no limits, it surpasses all reason
Your love is better than life
More than our finite minds can possess
Your ultimate gift to us and reassurance
That in Your perfect love, we may breathe and rest.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:3).

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them” (1 John 4:16)

Step by Step

Return our gaze to You

After whiplash has struck

And our mind’s all a muck

Focus our efforts on each step

You’ve shown is right

Work hard, love hard

Pray in faith day and night

Submit to Your plan

Trust You to see it through

Surrender answers we don’t have

Choose to trust in You

Gift of Sight

Is this a distraction or Your plan of action

A promise fulfilled or my tainted will

A gift so wise or a clever disguise

Oh, wash these corroded scales

from my eyes

So I would see, I would decipher

How to choose wisely for my ever after


“And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;” Acts 9:18

Sacrifice – The Essence of His Love

May I never grow complacent
Toward You or Your love
May my eyes never wonder
Lest I forget that You’re enough

Your love is pure
Your thoughts are gold
Your intentions holy
Your passion, bold

You sent Your Son as the greatest sacrifice
Your unequivocal love on display
You saw our debt and You paid the price
Revealing Your love in the costliest of ways.

“Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you.”

Psalm 63:3

Intercession

I cry out to You in my brokenness
With no other place to turn
I’ll rely on my utterances
Since my heart can’t find the words

“Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.”

Romans 8:26

Doubting Thomas

I did everything the Bible told me to
I forsook all others
And followed after You

You said when I confessed all my sin
That You cleansed, You forgave
When I believed with all my heart
You had washed all my sin away

You said my weakness was my strength
Because where I am weak You are strong
You said I could trust in Your grace
But this now appears all wrong

You have not kept Your promises
Your Word has not proven to be true
You have forsaken and abandoned me
Unless there never really was a You.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.

Isaiah 55:8

My God! My God! Why have you abandoned me?
Why are you so far from delivering me— from my groaning words?
My God, I cry out to you throughout the day, but you do not answer;
and throughout the night, but I have no rest.

Psalm 22:1-2

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

John 14:18

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Psalm 30:5

If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.

2 Timothy 2:13

Blind Faith

You know what’s truth and what is false
You know how and where to direct our feet
You know why the sun rises each day
You know what gives our hearts their beat
You know the reasons disappointments come
You separate the land from the sea
When the sun doesn’t rise or a heart is lost
You still call us to trust in Your Sovereignty

Away With You

When I get away from all my distractions,

There You are

Waiting to take my hand.

When I stop chasing what I think I need,

You gently show me

A far better plan.

“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21

Just This Day

Summer is here, let the classes and camps begin!  This year the summer activities we signed our boys up for all happen to fall on the same two weeks.  Coordinating all of the pick ups and drop offs has taken quite a bit of concentration and effort.  Band for one kid at 10:20, Basketball for another at 1, basketball for the other at 2:20, Ninja training at 4 and carpooling a group of kids to drama rehearsal at 5 and 10 pm, and a partridge in a pear tree. 

As I was preparing to let the boy’s dad know which pick ups and drop offs he could help with on Wednesday, my mind jumped to thinking about the details of Thursday.  That thought felt quite overwhelming as each day this week has it’s own specific minute details.  So, I decided we would just go over the details one day at a time.  Let us get through the details of Wednesday and help that run as smooth as possible before we start working out and discussing the details for Thursday.  Otherwise, our minds may explode. 

And it dawned on me that God probably has that same desire for us when giving direction. Each day has it’s own challenges, it’s own details, it’s own decisions to be made and acted on. Yet, when seeking direction from Him, we tend to want to know our entire future. “Can’t You just give us the entire picture now?!” I know for me, I rarely stop and ask for just the directions He has that one day. No, I want to know exactly what the directions will be for the next and the next and the next instead of trusting Him for the big picture and walking with Him one day at a time.

Lord, You know the details and needs of this day. You know the challenges and decisions we will face. You see down the road and know what direction You would have us take today. When we turn to the left or the right, let us hear You say “this is the way, now walk in it”.

“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”  Matthew 6:34

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21

Deep Roots

We excuse sin, we allow it

We think we know what’s best

We minimize it’s consequences

We trivialize it’s effects

We defend sin

We excuse it based on needs

We fail to see participating

Only plants new seeds

Turn away! Eradicate it!

Before it’s roots take hold

Turn away, even run!

Before more sin’s conceived.

“The iniquities of a wicked man entrap him; the cords of his sin entangle him.” Proverbs 5:22

In the Lion’s Den

I went in with the lions
And yet came out alive
Unscathed to tell the story
Of how and by Whom I survived
Clearly not by strength
Not by my wit nor guile
But because the Lord, He fought for me
And always wins the battle

“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14

19At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?” Daniel 6:19-20

Eternal

Rejoice in that which can’t be taken away

His promises for each new day

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Answers

I can’t tell you what to do

or what direction to go

Only Who will be there along the way

I can’t tell you

how to atone for your sin

The price has already been paid.

1 John 2:2 “And He is the propitiation for our sings; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”

Full Coverage

No matter how diligent
No matter how sincere
Our attempts are
at cleansing our own hearts
We still will fall short
But if His grace covers one,
It covers all.

10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. James 2:10

In This World

Reach for Him

When the sky begins to fall

When you can’t understand His hand

Trust His heart

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Lowly King

Broken and defeated

Crumbling to the ground

My hands reached out

And felt His feet

…….

My tears streamed down

Succumbing to pain’s sting

But anguish turned to praise

As I trusted this lowly King

“As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.” Luke 7:38

Above

Elevating my beliefs to your truths requires turning away from lies

Lies that say life’s goal is reaching self satisfaction

That all must be well around me before following through with godly action

Earthly troubles are my perimeter, the plain I clearly see.

Looking beyond to the heavenly is what You are asking of me.

But God

Don’t forget the Lord
When you face hopelessness
Don’t forget the Lord
When you lose sight of the light
Don’t forget the Lord
When you look at probability
Don’t forget the Lord
When you feel you’re losing the fight.

Have you ever noticed the phrase ‘But God’ in your Bible? Chances are: you have – and skated right past it. Take a closer look. From Genesis to 1 Samuel and Acts to Ephesians, almost every time the phrase occurs, it is to signal a change of scene. And each time, it is God stepping into the picture to powerfully upend a messed-up world again.

https://butgod.net

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ — by grace you have been saved.

Ephesians 2:4-5

Poor in Spirit

Lord, I don’t have much

but what I have is Yours

I’ll give You all I have

How could I give more?

43 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.” Mark 12:43-44

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3

Divine Guidance

You will make a way through this uncertain road

You’ll clear a path and illuminate my stepping stones.

Where will you take me? You will not say.

Only that you love me and you know the way.

Along the path my Lord leads me, whispering as we go.

Invisible safety embraces me disguised as a “not now” or a “no”.

Holding me to say “wait”, releasing me when it’s time to go.

Where he is leading me, I don’t yet need to know.

In All Things

May Your will be done
Whether it leaves me
wanting or satisfied
May Your will be done
Whether it finds me alone
or with loved ones by my side
May Your will be done
Whether full of pain or jubilee
May Your will be done
As I draw near to Thee

11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength. (Phillipians 4: 11-13)

Humbled

No human device suffices

nor heals my pride

No dark corner provides

a safe place to hide

By Your hand, I will not

overcome this suffering

Until bowing my knee

is the only place left for me

And I learn to live

humbly at Your throne

As Your presence surpasses

all other known.

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16

Self Control

I can forgive every wrong to keep my heart clean.

I can evaluate my failures to make changes I need.

I can not let the things around me make me bitter or lose my sense of peace.

I can keep writing about it all and hope that someone who needs a new perspective sees.

I can only control me.

“If you learn self-control, you can master anything.” – Anonymous

Galatians 5:23
Gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

“He who angers you conquers you.” – Elizabeth Kenny

“The first and best victory is to conquer self. To be conquered by self is, of all things, the most shameful and objectionable.” – Plato