How free would I be if worth wasn’t measured in friendship
My value wasn’t defined by other’s views
My fulfillment not met by earthly dreams
My heart’s needs met by only You
How clear would my vision be if I erased the clutter
How light the load if I let the weights go
How patient the wait if I fully surrendered
How complete the path if I trusted all You told
“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
My sin is not greater
My gifts are not lesser
Than all those who
have gone before
Equal in measure
For the standard of Christ
Is the only judgement
That matters any more
There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
James 2: 12-13
12 Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the Law that gives freedom. 13 For judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
Grateful no matter where I go
You’re with me
No matter what stage, what season
You are there
Running into Your arms
I see all You teach me
Through these storms
My stubbornness gets shattered
My treasures all tattered
My humility is deepened
My sins are forgiven
“Your Love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on me.”
(One Thing Remains)
38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[b] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord
This is not the path I had in mind
These are not the troubles I would have designed
But my easy roads would never have known
The beauty your paths have shown
so I will trust in you
There’s a little extra pain in my tears
A little more sorrow in my heart
The struggle is getting the best of me
Each day I’m not sure how to start
One breath at a time
I slowly move forward and pray
That I’ll see something, hear a word
That sounds different than it did yesterday
I never discover a solution
My battles never find resolution
My actions never match my words
My thoughts are always disturbed
I never write a famous song
I never find a place to belong
My worry doesn’t cease
My soul never finds peace
Promises are fulfilled
I perfect the art of being still
I continue to grow and gain
I find purpose in the pain
I gain insight and faith
I discover new strength
I hold fast to the truth
I stay beside You
I give you my treasures
All tattered and torn
They’ve lost all their luster
They’re long over worn
At first I couldn’t see it
I didn’t have a clue
How worthless they were
Until I saw You
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ
I give You
My preconceived notions
My misled emotions
All that I want and dream
I give You
Every part of me
I desire immediate gratification.
But often Your timing is different than mine.
Please help me to remember in my struggle for pleasure,
That Your will be done, not mine.
In my need, I surrender my heart to You.
One broken area at a time.
In Your grace, I offer my thanks to You.
For being patient when I am so stubborn and blind.
May I trust You enough to ask every day that Your will be done, not mine.
You don’t want me with a million masks on
To prove my worthiness to You
You want me to accept Your grace
And sometimes that’s all I can do
I’ll wait for you, I’ll wait
Won’t do it as in the past
Won’t go my own way
Won’t jump in too fast
Your eyes see ahead
Your hand holds all the cards
You’ve made and erased all the rules
You’ve let me taste your heart
So I’ll wait, I’ll wait for you
Lest I err in my own way
I’ll take it slowly, let it unfold
And keep waiting on you today
People will let you down
They’ll disappoint you, fail you,
misunderstand, mistreat and leave you.
And when they do, turn to Me.
Turn to me in your hurt,
your sadness, disappointment and fear.
Turn to Me to learn forgiveness
To gain understanding
Turn to Me to be healed.
I forgive and love like no one else
I’ll teach you to do the same
It won’t always make sense
but My way is the best
not just for you
but for everyone here.
When it comes to things
I don’t understand
I give them to You
and trust what You say
When worry is tempting me
To care what others think
I remember your thoughts
Are all that matter anyway
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
May I never be so high That I fail to look up
May I never be so content
That I stop asking You to fill me up
May this world never answer
all of my questions
That I would stop bringing
all of my wondering to You
May my heart always long,
my hands ever reach,
my eyes always search
To experience You
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Rest in His security
You won’t be put to shame
If You trust in His good name
To you they cried out and were saved; in you they trusted and were not put to shame.
In you, Lord, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your righteousness, rescue me and deliver me; turn your ear to me and save me. Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go;
Here I am safe
Keep me in your arms
As I clean out the messes
That cause me nothing but harm
Here I am loved
Let me never forget
As I keep walking further away
From a broken past and regret
Here I am hopeful
Fix my gaze on You
As I search to know You more
Align my thoughts with Your truth
They were amazed at his teaching, because his words had authority.
Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.
We rented a paddle board. I put my 4 year old in front, my 7 year old on the back and I stood in the middle paddling us out into the deeper water. Just around the side of the mountain the water opens up to a larger part of the lake and it’s beautiful and serene and most importantly (for a home full of 3 boys) quiet. The boys had never been on a paddle board before. They had been playing with their friends close to shore most of the day and I really wanted to get a chance and show them what it was like to go out deeper and see the calmer, even more beautiful parts of the lake on the other side. So off we went. Noah, my youngest, is scared of anything that’s not a perfectly solid ground. So he was hanging on for dear life to the roping on the board. Caleb who is rambunctious and cannot sit still was turning around, sticking his feet in the water and dipping his water gun in the lake to fill it up. My main goal was not to fall. But every time Caleb moved, he’d rock the board. So I finally said “look, I want to show y’all something really beautiful and the only way we’re going to get there is if you sit still and let me paddle.” And they did! And it was such a wonderful time with my boys. Of course as soon as I said it, I thought I bet God has asked me to do the same thing but I keep squirming and rocking the board. And if I would just sit still and be patient and let Him do the paddling, I could experience a blessed ride and see the beauty on the other side of the mountain.
“Be still, my soul,
The Lord is on your side.
Bear patiently, the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to your God, to order and provide.
In every change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul,
Your best your heavenly friend,
Through thorny waves leads to a joyful end.”
-Be still my soul song lyrics
(This version by Ginny Owens)
Journal entry from years past…
The first 10 years of my growing relationship with Christ was spent learning and absorbing. I absorbed everything there was to hear or read about the Bible. I learned lessons, I was fed spiritually, I grew in my faith by seeing prayers answered and I came to trust in God’s love and grace. It was the time when every sermon on the radio filled my heart and head with joy and peace and my sustenance each day was hearing from the Lord. I was blessed. I was blessed with an abundance of answered prayers. I was blessed with marriage and children and church and friends. Sin still caused disturbances from time to time but God’s grace always prevailed. I was forgiven, I was cleansed and I was held in his arms.
The next season began to creep in. This next season didn’t feel quite as pleasant. I became aware of 2 distinct parts of my life. The one and most important part of my life rested in this bubble above my head. This bubble contained everything I had absorbed in the last 10 years. It was filled with biblical truths and godly wisdom. I’d reach in the bubble and grab ideas out to use when appropriate. I’d reach in there to remember God’s grace when it was needed. It was an awesome and useful bubble. But down below, I walked the plain of life in another category. I walked in my emotions. I saw life’s circumstances through my emotions. I acted on them and looked to them for truth and for guidance. The two bubbles, I thought, had always been aligned pretty well, co-existing in harmony until some differences began to appear.
My emotions began to lead me one direction while my Christian knowledge was leading me in another. How could this be? Can I no longer trust my instinct or emotion? “Serve your neighbor” but “I don’t like my neighbor”. “Be patient with your husband” but “he’s wrong!” and the list goes on…and on….and on. My growing awareness of these two spheres of influence brought forth the question “which one do I now follow?” Will I surrender all and follow Him no matter where He leads even if it is against my own desires? Will I allow my faith to become victorious over my feelings?
You are Lord of the heavens and the earth and over this heart and life of mine. I pray that You would wash away the parts of me that still fight You and oppose your leading. I pray I would be surrendered completely to your guidance and your will. Thank You for never giving up on me and always loving me passionately. Thank You for making me your child, forgiven and free. Thank You for having a plan for my life and the means to carry it out. Thank you that your plan is so much better than mine. Strengthen me to choose You every day. Amen
Certain things I’ll never understand
And some of them cause me pain
But when I place them in Your hand
They never quite feel the same
The sting is dulled, hope gets brighter
Faith feels renewed and restored.
So I’ll keep placing life in Your hands
And keep my torn heart at Your door
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.
You are above my emotions, above all that I think or feel.
My future is not dictated by my circumstances, but by your will.
Elevating my beliefs to your truths requires turning away from lies
Lies that say life’s only goal is reaching self satisfaction
That all must be well around me before following through with godly action
Earthly troubles are my perimeter, all that my earthly eyes can see
Looking beyond to the heavenly is what You are asking of me.
Scripture says your ways are above mine and your thoughts are not as my own
That You surpass all understanding, that You sit on your royal, heavenly throne.
This earthly plain I so clearly see.
Let me leave it behind to rest beside Thee.
My needs lead me to desire
My desires are left unmet
And then I’m left stranded
With empty dreams and regret
He stirs everything within me
Answers fade away leaving me with nothing
I look up, You are there, watching and knowing
My old ways aren’t working, my methods useless
So, I let You work.
Working away in this heart and head
To Produce fruit, Spirit-led
My selfish nature will not be fed
I cling to Your spirit for life
To journey with You is not to arrive
But to watch, to trust and
To find peace within the waiting.
I was following my heart
And my heart was deceived
Truth that was staring at me
Was still hard to see
I tried to piece it together
Tried to satisfy this heart
But it kept leading me wrong
Deeper into the dark
Heart, what have you done?
I thought I could trust you
But you are wavering and selfish
Your guidance will no longer do
I need a higher guide
One not tainted by sin and desire
One who will lead me right
And keep me safe through this mire
“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin.”
There are times we come to a place
Where a decision needs to be made
Our natural self leans a certain way
But You tell us to stop and wait
Past my inklings
There’s your voice I think
When I don’t follow me
But I wait and trust in You
You give me the answers
And show me what to do
1 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
I have a few blind spots
Where my vision’s unclear
I look and I squint
Still clarity is not there
Strength here is gone
Self will won’t heal my sight
These are the places
I must surrender the fight
I must surrender my will
In the places I can’t see
And trust there’s a Savior
Looking out and caring for me
10 “How then were your eyes opened?” they asked. 11 He replied, “The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see.”
2 Corinthians 12:8-10
8Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
What do you do when God says no?
When He doesn’t answer or doesn’t show
Look to the cross
Where nothing made sense
The answers weren’t yet evident
But He was still in control
He allowed it all to be
He turned His greatest sorrow
Into the cross that saves you and me
I’ve been here before
And I know which way to go
So how come everytime I step my foot out
The rest of me doesn’t want to follow
Hindered by self
And the desire to be filled
Doubting Your promises
And fearing Your will
What if it is not what I want
What if it’s full of sacrifice
What if I’m never happy
What if I could create a better life
Do I choose trust
in this uncertainty
Do I trust
You love me abundantly?
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.
Grace consumes me
Strength always finds me
Hope keeps being rebuilt
Pushing and pulling
Renewing my frame
Preparing my heart for this hill
The generic meaning of sanctification is “the state of proper functioning.” To sanctify someone or something is to set that person or thing apart for the use intended by its designer. A pen is “sanctified” when used to write. Eyeglasses are “sanctified” when used to improve sight. In the theological sense, things are sanctified when they are used for the purpose God intends. A human being is sanctified, therefore, when he or she lives according to God’s design and purpose.
Definition taken from: http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/sanctification/
“…But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:11
Depend on Him alone
Know you’re in His care
Entrust your heart to Him
Receive His direction
Not other’s opinions
Entrust your life to Him
Think praise and gratitude
Surrender your struggles
Entrust your mind to Him
This ache will dull in time
I will just keep taking it day by day
And trust the wound you’ve left
Will one day go away
It may take longer than I want
It may not be today
But down the road I’ll find healing
As I keep taking it day by day