Going Forward

We are living in an exciting time to be a Christian! We are also living in a terrifying time to be a Christian. One of my favorite authors and teachers has written a timely and pointed blog post that I think is a must-read for anyone who calls themselves Christian. Please read Going Forward by author and teacher Beth Moore. And then go forward to church. Forward to scripture, forward to prayer, forward to loving the way Jesus loved and still does.

 

Pray

God called me in my sleep last night. Or this morning. I’m never sure which it is when I wake up so early with a very specific song lyric in my head and my heart. Was it the wee small hours of the night when all the house is quiet and dark and I’m in a deep restful sleep? Or was it those few moments before waking, when it seems that there is just the thinnest veil between this world and the next?

Though I’m silent, my heart is crying
‘Cause I was made to come to You

This line from Sanctus Real was singing through my mind as I opened my eyes this morning. Pray. That’s the name of the song. Even in my sleep when I am the most silent and still I ever get, my heart cries out to God, because that’s how it’s designed to work by the very God to Whom my heart cries out! His beautiful design is for me to love Him all day long, and in return God gives me a song in the night.

By day the LORD commands his steadfast love,
and at night his song is with me,
a prayer to the God of my life.
– Psalm 42:8

I must have read this verse a hundred times in my life, but this is the first time I ever really understood it! The song my precious Lord sings over me in my sleep is The Holy Spirit teaching me how to pray (Luke 12:12, John 14:26)… A prayer to the God of my life. And all God asks is for me to love him when I’m awake.

So, this morning I’m going to pray, just like the chorus to the song says, even if it’s just to speak the name of Jesus.

So I pray
God I need You more than words can say
Right here in this moment
You know my heart, You know my need
You know every part of me
So even if it’s just to speak Your name
I’m gonna pray

Love Him all day. Listen for your song in the night.

Click here to listen to Pray from Sanctus Real.

It’s Not About Me

Satan wants you to quit praying. He wants you to believe God isn’t paying one whit of attention to you. That He’s moved on without you. That you don’t matter. There’s only one thing to do with that. Pray twice as much. With twice the faith. And a thousand times the thanks. -Beth Moore

This is one of those mornings that my mind is all over the map, but everything in it is screaming at me to pray. Focus on others. What is God calling me to? The song in my head is Start A Fire by Unspoken.

This world can be cold and bitter
Feels like we’re in the dead of winter
Waiting on something better
But am I really gonna hide forever?

Over and over again
I hear Your voice in my head
Let Your light shine, let Your light shine for all to see

Start a fire in my soul
Fan the flame and make it grow
So there’s no doubt or denying
Let it burn so brightly
That everyone around can see
That it’s You, that it’s You that we need
Start a fire in me

At the same time, I had words in my head that prompted me to write this verse…

It’s not about me
It’s not about me
It’s not about my fears and failures
It’s not about my hopes and plans
It’s not about what I want or need
It’s not about my desires or dreams
It’s not about who I want to be
It’s not about me

Cause if I know you, Lord
You know my every thought
And if I love you, Lord
Your love fills up my heart
If I remember You
You will remember me
And fill my every need

The above quote from Beth Moore came from an email I received this morning, after being awakened by Start A Fire and writing the verse. In that blog post, she also said, “Intercession for others becomes a guard against the narcissism of this present culture.” If I pray for others, it keeps me from thinking too much of myself, because it’s NOT about me.

It’s so incredible to me how God has thrown all this at me at the same time this morning!!! I can’t ignore it. Pray! Pray now. Keep praying. Pray for others. Pray for myself. Pray continually. Pray with thanksgiving.

Start a fire in me, Lord, because it’s not about me. Don’t let my prayers or my love for others grow cold, dull or boring. Light me up!!! Set my heart on fire for others who need You so desperately. Though it’s nearly overwhelming, thank You for throwing it all at me this morning. Help me not to let You down. Amen.

Click here to listen to Start A Fire by Unspoken.

Click here to read the full blog post on Prayer from Living Proof Ministries.

I chose the featured image because it reminds me of Matthew 6:26… “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” It is oil on 140 lb paper, 2.5″ by 3.5″, artist trading card.

A Lullaby

The baby relaxes into me and his breathing evens out, slow and steady, soft as a whisper. His head is tucked up under my chin in the hollow of my neck, snuggled close. As I stand at the window and gaze out at the gray Copenhagen morning, treasuring the warm softness of this sweet baby in my arms, I am humming. Low and soft, the humming takes shape and I realize I have been humming, then singing, an old hymn that I haven’t thought about or sung in years.

Pass me not, oh gentle Savior
Hear my humble cry
While on others thou art calling
Do not pass me by.

Savior, Savior, hear my humble cry
While on others thou art calling
Do not pass me by.

As I stand at the window, swaying and humming, rocking and singing, all so very slow and quiet, tears well in my eyes, and I realize… I’m singing over this baby the way God sings over me. When I’m sleeping, relaxed in His keeping, unaware, safe in His arms. Quieted by His love.

Zephaniah 3:17
The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing.

I’m no longer singing to the baby. My song has become my prayer to God. A prayer that He will stay close and never let me go.

Several years ago, I had a Fernando Ortega CD, which included this song. It’s my favorite arrangement. His lyric changed only in one place… “While on others thou art smiling.” Click here to listen to this worshipful arrangement.

Somewhere In The World

My youngest child is 21 today. As painful as it is to believe, it’s even more so when I see it written out like this. Of course, I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s just the “wow factor” of it. How did the time go so fast? Where did the years go? I had four kids within thirteen-years, so it seemed as though I would always have a child or children in my heart, my house, my life. Now they’re all grown and out of the house. Two out of three ain’t bad, huh?

No matter how old they get or how far they go, my children will always, ALWAYS, be in my heart and in my life. They may not know it, or be aware of it, but it’s true. I have prayed for my kids from the moment I knew they existed, and I will continue to pray for them until The Lord calls me home. They’ve changed. I no longer pray over colic or sleep schedules, potty training or ear infections. We moved on to healing after ER visits for a bike wreck, a soccer injury, a bad cut. Late nights out in the car, away at college. But ever and always, I have prayed for the person who would be their spouse.

There is a song I used to sing when my boys were little called Somewhere In The World by Wayne Watson. I still get all teary-eyed and choked up just singing it in my head.

Somewhere in the world today,
a little girl will go out to play
all dressed up in mama’s clothes.
At least the way I suppose it goes.
Somewhere in the world tonight
Before she reaches to turn out the light
She’ll be praying from a tender heart.
A simple prayer that’s a work of art.

And I don’t even know her name,
but I’m praying for her just the same.
That The Lord would write his name upon her heart.
Cause somewhere in the course of this life,
my little boy will need a Godly wife.
So hold on to Jesus, baby wherever you are.

Now, two of my kids have married the love of their life. The birthday boy is engaged to his life-love. One is still waiting to find his. So I’ll keep praying the words in this song, and I’ll keep praying for all my kids. Because that’s what mommas do. We love and pray for our kids through every stage and phase of their lives. Today, I’m praying for the best birthday ever and a great first day of senior year at WKU for David and his fiancé.

The best part about this stage in life for me is that I get to add my grandkids to my prayer time. There are four now, a fifth one is due in about 5 weeks, and another we are praying The Lord will place in our family by way of adoption very soon. So blessed!!!!

I actually found this old song on YouTube. Go here to listen to Somewhere in the World.