Friday, July 8, 2016

2016

The year my son was born. 

Police violence. Crowd retaliation. Racism strong. Two ugly presidential candidates. 

#Dallas
#AltonSterling
#PhilandoCastile
#BlackLivesMatter

A bombing in Turkey.
A shooting in Orlando. 
Two friends with cancer.
A couple at church losing their first born baby. 

How long, oh Lord? How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until You judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?

How long must our hearts be heavy with news, with the future, with our presents, with injustice, with sin, with hatred, with sadness and grief and weighed down joy?

Lord, have mercy. You are full of patience, unending patience and mercy. Waiting to rain down. Waiting to draw in those whom You have called. You are patient. Our violence is impatient. We are drowning in it. 

My son was born this year. The year it seems the world is going downhill. It seems it's worse than it has been. The worst presidential race with the worst candidates. Inevitably they beat out seemingly nicer individuals. My heart hurts each time I hear more news. And I find it on Facebook, a platform more and more stuffed with bad news and cries of pain and people crying out for justice. People who don't know You Lord. They don't know only You can restore justice and peace. You alone. 

God alone. How long, oh Lord? Have mercy on us. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Our God is Love

Let’s hear it from God’s Word.

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God, but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 

We know that we live in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and He in God. 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 him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgement, because in this world we are like Him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

We love because He first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And He has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.”

Lord, make me perfect in love. Because I fear. Finances, death, disease, my plans not going my way, babies coming too soon, babies not coming at all, what if this happens, what if I don’t want it, what if God is out for me, doesn’t really love me. God is love. 

Not that we loved God.

But that He loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 

And so we know and we rely on the love God has for us. 

Lord, help me rely. 

Lord, help me know Your love. 

Lord, help me love.


Lord, be my love. 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

LENT



I have felt so dry for so long. Too many things, too many plans, too busy, too rushed, too tired, too ready for wedding planning to be over, too much wavering from my God. Too much doubt about how much He loves me. Too much grumbling and discontent and rudeness coming from my mouth. My grumbling and giving in to distraction have kept me dry and cracked my heart.

But the Lord is mighty, and answers my heart’s longing for more of Him. 

It started with Colossians. A refresher into the supremacy of Christ. If we have hope in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that His blood covers our unrighteousness, then the LORD considers us holy and blameless in His sight! Finally a desire for the Word! Finally, my heart is soaking it up.

And a change in my job has given me time (finally!!!) to go to BSF. And I read Matthew and Isaiah and Romans and Corinthians and am reminded that JESUS HAS CLOTHED ME WITH SALVATION. It is because of HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS that I am SET FREE from sin. Hallelujah!!!

And I know I need two things. In this season, in my waiting on wedding and working on packing and living in transition and unraveling the busy, I dedicate this Lent to 

1.       giving up complaining
2.       practicing being present

I have grown into the type of person I don’t like being around. I complain way too stinkin' much. Icky. And I have allowed it, planted it, watered it, added Miracle Gro—you get it. So enough.

And presence. I have a journal I use for BSF. I was reading some notes I took back in 2012, of a teaching leader I greatly admire, who knows the Lord and does what He says and I want to be her. In some notes on Philippians from February 15, 2012, she said, “Wherever you are, be all there.” Wherever I am, I’m in a million places at once. Wedding details, job stuff, babysitting, feeling tired, don’t have time for myself, grumble grumble, more wedding planning, did I pay that bill, what do I need from the grocery store, what are we doing this weekend, when am I going to have time for myself?! I need to meet with this person and this person and skype and catch up and clean and launder and clean again and wedding plan some more and oh yeah I’m supposed to be working. You get it. 

I need to slow down, be in the present. I want to practice contentment. I don’t want to be a mother who is flustered all the time and annoyed at her kids. I want to joyfully lick the jelly of their little fingers and laugh at how cute they are and BE in that moment with them. Peaceful. Present. In this season of my life, before marriage, before kids, in this time that I have, I want to practice contentment. 

 Last night I picked up One Thousand Gifts after way too long away from it, and Ann Voskamp quoted Elisabeth Elliot: “Wherever you are, be all there.” My heart flipped, because I know that was God, getting it into my head: “I love you. Be present. Be still. Give me your weary and I will clothe you with joy.”

LENT.

Monday, December 9, 2013

We Call it "Blessed"



Today, I am grateful. It has been six months since I have last written, and much has happened since then! I am engaged to a man who is incredible, intelligent, imperfect, and impeccably perfect for me. How great is God’s faithfulness! There is nothing better than to be close to this God. His love is better than life. This love He has given me is a gift that I do not deserve, and is far better than I imagined. He is a snow-shoveling, early-rising, hard-working, book-loving, selfless man who seeks the Lord and loves His Word. This is the one I have waited for :) 

My mom calls me a lucky girl. We call it blessed. More to come…

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Hudson Taylor

I am reading "Hudson Taylor and the China Inland Mission."

I am astounded. Convicted. Heart stirred. Hudson Taylor was a missionary to China, and lived every moment in surrender and service to Christ. I am not revering him, but Christ's power in him. It's funny, I read maybe just 6 pages and had to stop. Wanted to digest it slowly and savor the goodness of the power of Christ in this man's life. It all points to Christ. And He is so good. And 20 pages later my heart is burning for the unsaved, and for all the ways my life should change to be of greater service to Christ Jesus. And I felt like I had to tell someone, and so I am telling you.

You should read this book. Even just read the first 26 pages.

It. is. that. good. Because He. is. that. good.

Now go buy it, amazon it, google it, library it, find it, read it. For the sake of the Kingdom of Christ and because of our duty in the Great Commission by the Lord Jesus himself, "Go ye into the world and preach the Gospel to every creature."

Amen and amen.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

How Mercy Frees Us to Worship


Nature Love 

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

How great is Your faithfulness! Knowing where I stand, I look to the sky. And in a moment I am at rest. I breathe deep.  The tops of trees, the wind and the clouds capture me to Worship. I am in love with the Lord, and I smile. I rest and worship and keep taking in breaths too big for my lungs because I want it all, and I want to keep smelling the air’s flowers. And the pine trees make no sound but move, and they remind me of Michigan, where the Lord brought me to rest and trust, where I laid to sleep on a pillow with sailboats, and dipped beneath a blanket and breathed deep and knew it is well and caught sleep in the afternoon. Any time I look down, I think of the world. But when I look up—I breathe in instinct and, intending to do nothing but stare at the clouds, I worship. Everything in me sings a silent praise. My sin is great, but my heart is stirred, for the Truth He brings to my heart—that I look up, read and declare—saves me. His mercy frees me to worship. And I will worship forever. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Rainy Day Blues

I'ma be real with y'all. I've been cranky and tired all day, and just waiting for this day to be over. Trying to find redemption in a bad day. Woke up feeling the startings of a cold given to me by my mother. Angry at that. Tired and cranky, not enough sleep, too much work, wish I could nap, why can't anyone else cook around here, why don't we have any vegetables in the house, why can't I just have my space and why does everyone have to talk to me and ask me questions when I'm trying to sulk.

So I asked a friend to pray. God, redeem this day somehow.

Let's list out attributes of God. Maybe that will help.
- He is all-knowing and sovereign
- He is in control of all things
- Every good and perfect gift comes from Him
- He loves me and knows me
- He wants what's best for me and He is my Daddy
- He is patient, loving, kind, humble, steadfast, and True
- He gave me this job, and gave me money to buy food
- He has a homemade chicken pot pie in the oven waiting for me
- He loves me, He loves me, He loves me. Imagine someone you love, and the feelings you have towards them. I love my sister to death. I love being around her and feel I would do anything for her. I love to see her smile and I love doing nice things for her. God's love is like that, only 1 MILLION THOUSAND TIMES THAT BECAUSE HE IS GOD.
- Moreover, He has given me the gift of salvation, the free gift that is for all who accept it. I will be with Him in heaven. These present and momentary troubles are nothing compared to the glory that will be revealed in me.
- He is good. He is good. He is loving. He is good.

This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad. In my cranky tired rainy day funk, I will rejoice in my God. In the faint sore throat I feel, in the anxiety that a cold will start, I will be glad. In the rest of my work today, I will feel tired, but I will praise God.

Lord, thank You that You are here with me and You love me. I have done nothing to deserve Your love, and this makes it all the more humbling to receive. Because You have power over my day, redeem it as You see fit. In the Lord Jesus' precious name, Amen.