Tag: life (Page 1 of 2)

Posted on LinkedIn as a response to a recommendation to read

I’m a pretty avid reader (think 3-5 books a week), and I have been since I was five years old. The thing that trips me up about that is that I have found my time consumed by books that DON’T MATTER in the grand scheme of things, primarily because my favorite reading material is sci-fi/fantasy with mystery/thriller/action books a close second. Those things are just stories about fictional characters, and it’s just another kind of addiction/method of escapism. I know this. I have known this for years and years.

I do read non-fictional books as well, although not as many. 98% of those are Christian in nature. When I do read those, I find God speaking to me in a lot of different ways… but even those have not helped me as much as the people recommending those books thought that they would, or that I thought they would (help me, that is).

What I have found, though, is that reading the scripture gives me an almost tangible sense that God is breathing new life into me. Even if it’s something I’ve read repeatedly hundreds of times in my life time (Psalm 23 for example). When I’m desperate for a touch from the Lord, I don’t pick up a book that some really anointed (no sarcasm at all here!) spiritual leader has written. I do go back to the basics and reread the book of Genesis, or Isaiah, or various Psalms, or the gospels, or some of Paul’s letters, or even Revelation (especially when I need hope).

I realize the value in reading, and it is a sorely neglected skill. DO read. Do read recommended books. Maybe something that spoke to the person making the recommendation will speak to you. But first and foremost, READ THE BIBLE. It was my favorite storybook when I was a child, and that’s exactly how I think people forget to read it. We’re always looking for something from God in a verse that we want to speak to us, relevant to our situation. We’re usually studying it to dig out deeper meanings or to find support for things we feel God has put on our hearts.

How often, though, do we just sit down and simply read HIS story? It’s the story of His glory… how often He showed up and moved or spoke or breathed into a situation and changed that situation by simply being there. If you can just take it in, over and over again, then without even intending to do so by human effort, you will find yourself hiding His word in your heart.

Today was one of those days when I woke up flat on my back and couldn’t get up. I couldn’t do anything but lay there and cry for a few hours. But when I talked to the Lord, the scriptures whispered back to me. When I said, “I can’t handle this, Lord,” He said, “My grace is sufficient.” When I thought of how dark my life looks right now, Psalm 23 wandered through my heart: “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me. Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.” When I just wanted to scream that despair was overwhelming me, I heard, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for…” Even now, I keep hearing, “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? Of whom shall I be afraid?”

Reading matters. Reading the Word matters even more–not just to obtain something for a sermon or a song, not just to find an answer for an argument against Christianity, not just to find something that speaks to us when we’re looking for answers, but just because IT’S GOD’S WORD. When we know it well, He DOES use it to speak back to us when we need it, and He can use it to speak through us for someone else’s benefit in song, sermon, or just daily conversation.

Hope this has been helpful for someone.

River Richly Flowing

Life is a river richly flowing,
Freely teeming with people, nations, and happenings,
All mingled in Your Spirit’s purposes.
Past, present, future…mesh together because
Nothing limits Your hand at work.
You are our life.
You give us our very existence.
You pour through every moment, every molecule
With the power of Your love—
Sparkling with newness,
Brilliant with Your glory
Revealing every shadow of hidden darkness till it flees…
And the river flows on, full of us, brimming with You
Life is ever moving, ever changing, ever new,
Because, O LORD, of unfathomable, beyond-imaginable You!

Holy Is The LORD Almighty

Angel feathers falling from the very throne of God
From the holy heavens bringing wonder from above.
There the living creatures worship where no man has stood
Crying, “Holy. Holy. Holy is the LORD…?

Golden glory cloud of dust hangs weighty in the air—
Holy Spirit manifests His love for all to see.
So, the sons and daughters in the kingdom stand in awe
Crying, “Holy. Holy. Holy is the LORD…?

Take our ordinary lives in these days full of dread
Radiate your grace and glory to the world around
Let light and life and love come permeate and bring all near
Crying, “Holy. Holy. Holy is the LORD…?

Jesus, Name above all names, let every tongue confess
Your majesty and resurrection power over all,
And every knee will bow before the very Son of God
Crying, “Holy. Holy. Holy is the LORD…?

For Holy is the LORD Almighty and the Lamb, who for us bled—
Everlasting Splendor, Sovereign Love, and King of kings.
He Who sits upon the throne as brilliant, cleansing Light
Calls us all to come to Him, redeemed by His own Life.

Morning Sky

Fingers of the morning sun pierce the clouds,
Like Your hand extended over the landscape,
Hovering above us all as sweet reminder of
Your goodness, Lord…
Your mercy, Lord…
Your continual grace that allows us to
Begin each new day with Your breath of life.
The deeply blue-gray clouds outlined
With golden filaments of light
Starkly contrasts pale blue-white sky
Like the wounded world against the healing heavens…
All held together in Your palm.

Psalm 139:13-18

13 For you created my inmost being;     you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;     your works are wonderful,     I know that full well.  15 My frame was not hidden from you     when I was made in the secret place,     when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.  16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;     all the days ordained for me were written in your book     before one of them came to be.  17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God!     How vast is the sum of them!  18 Were I to count them,     they would outnumber the grains of sand—     when I awake, I am still with you.

Sunshine

Today I feel like sunshine
Though it’s cold and wet and gray.
Inside my soul I feel fine
Though the storms of life hold sway.
It is odd but I can stand fast
Feeling rest and grace and peace
Never minding as I sail past
Other ships and harbors’ ease.

For the way of strength in Jesus
Is to know that I am weak
To acknowledge in my stresses
That His wisdom helps me seek
Past the folly of man’s goodness
Into truth and faith and love
And to stand upon God’s promise
With His new life from above.

Today I know just who I am
Though I sometimes forget
I am a child held in His hand
And should not grasp regret.
Repenting, I receive new life—
Confess, release, advance
Through Christ whose awesome sacrifice
Gives me a second chance.

Feel the Season Changing

I can feel the season changing.
Seems God’s always rearranging,
And I wonder what new strange thing
He is doing in my life.
As I look towards tomorrow,
I am hoping I that I will grow
Moving forward as I follow
Leaving worrying and strife.

I have learned so much the hard way
When I try to do things halfway.
Still there’s really only His way,
If I want to do them right.
Can I use what I’ve been learning
To obey Him without turning
And to use what I’m discerning
To trust God without my sight?

Faith is following His guidance
As He leads me in this romance
With the loving grace that He grants
When I’m stumbling along.
As I move into the next phase
He is changing me in new ways,
Giving mercy to me always—
He reminds me I belong.

In His everlasting promise
I can take each step with calmness,
Knowing He will hold me harmless
In the refuge of His wings.
He’s my dwelling place and fortress.
I will trust in His great goodness
Through the seasons’ steady progress,
Though I don’t know what they’ll bring.

Change

Interesting, Lord…
The way You do things
Never ceases to amaze me.
So many “suddenlies? recently
In my life and those around me
Teach me again that
The waiting is always worth it.
I never know when it will end
(And it always seems endless),
But then You turn my life inside out
Or upside down… or right-side left.

I never know quite how
Things will end up these days.
I can sense though that
One of those “suddenlies? is almost here.
I’m not really stressed about it—
Just pondering how different
My life will be in just two months.

It’s like the anticipation I felt on
The first day of every school year.
What new things will I need to learn?
What new people will I meet?
How will I feel when
The holidays come this year and
I am in a different place?

Knowing that change will come, but
Not knowing what change will look like…
This is a good thing.
My faith grows every day because
You did say, after all, that
Father causes his sun to rise
On the evil and the good, and
Sends rains on the righteous
And the unrighteous.

So I know I can rely on You to be
“My strength and my fortress,
My God in whom I trust,?
Whatever change and happenstance
Brings my way.

For Ryan and Shawna

You are astonishing, Lord!
It amazes me to stand here
As your hand slowly unfolds
To reveal the tiny gift inside.
The waiting isn’t over, but
It seems as if Your plan is clear.
My friends are rejoicing
With some reserve as of yet.
But life bundled up in a baby boy
Just bounces around and
Smacks you in the heart with joy!
It’s hard not to hope that
Your hand is holding grace, that
Your goodness will be the sure hand–
Even though, for now, we still wait,
I’m going to trust You to know best
Still hoping for long years of prayer
To be answered in THIS gift.

Another Lesson!

For all the silly things I do in this life—
Things that make me feel foolish or stupid—
You offer Your graceful arms
Like a mom to a small child.
You comfort me.
You remind me of
Your eternal perspective and infinite wisdom.
If I could just remember to ask You,
Maybe I wouldn’t make so many mistakes.
Still, You pick me up, love on me,
Set my feet on Your path again, and
With a disciplinary swat to my rear,
You help me remember the lesson.
…And I… I’m sure
I shall do other silly things as I grow in You,
But by Your mercy, I’ll learn each lesson
(Even if it’s more than once)
Till everything is done and
I can stand before Your throne,
Covered by Your grace,
Grown-up in Your love.

Page 1 of 2

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén

Bad Behavior has blocked 143 access attempts in the last 7 days.