Drops in the ocean

Where do you go when you want to know? Most of us grab our smart phones and get any information we need in an instant. Is it going to rain tomorrow? There’s an app for that. How many times a day does someone ask a question or speculate on a topic and everyone in the group picks up their phone to look it up? 

Some things I need to know can’t be found on Google. Like how much my husband loves me, or whether my friend’s test results came out okay, or if another friend was accepted for the graduate program she desperately wanted. How about God’s love for me? Can I Google that or should I look elsewhere? The song in my head tells me where to look. It is Drops In The Ocean from Hawk Nelson.

If you want to know
How far my love can go
Just how deep, just how wide
If want to see
How much you mean to me
Look at my hands, look at my side
If you could count the times I say you are forgiven
It’s more than the drops in the ocean

It’s all about relationship. Do I want a relationship with my phone or with people? With God? Our Heavenly Father created us to love us, to be His children. To put down whatever is distracting us from Him and pay attention. How often have we done that with our own kids? “Look at me. What did I say? Pay attention.” This song reminds me of the promise in Romans 8:38-39…

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

If I want to know about God’s love for me, I must go to the source and open my Bible. And read it. And reflect on what it says and remember what it says. I must look at the hands and feet of Jesus. I must fix my eyes on the wounds He suffered, the cruelty and shame He took on Himself so that I could live this life He gave me. Thousands of times he has forgiven me, even before I knew I needed forgiveness. More than the drops in the ocean. There’s NOT an app for that!!

Click here to listen to Drops In The Ocean from Hawk Nelson.

Featured image: Drop in the Ocean by David Ardley, 2012. Click here for more information on this artist. 

Against All Odds

First, I just want to say that I am not a Phil Collins fan. Nope. I usually change the station if he comes on the radio, and I sure don’t have any of his songs on my iPod. So why have I had Against All Odds in my head since the wee small hours?? Warning! This song is an ear worm. Don’t read these lyrics if you don’t want this song stuck in your head.

So take a look at me now
well there’s just an empty space
And there’s nothin’ left here to remind me
just the memory of your face
Now take a look at me now
‘cos there’s just an empty space
But to wait for you is all I can do
and that’s what I’ve got to face
Take a good look at me now.

And as I work through this post, trying to figure out why THIS particular song is the one in my head this morning, there is one line on repeat. And now it all makes sense.

“You’re the only one who really knew me at all.”

I think we all want to be really known in this world. To have at least one other person who “gets” us. Someone to whom we don’t have to explain ourselves. That one person who understands without us having to “explain it.” If we’re lucky, it’s our spouse. Or a best friend. Or maybe a sister or brother.

Jesus knows us. Written in red in John 10:27-28 are Jesus’ own words… “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand.”

An amazing promise from The One and Only Son of God. And all I have to do is hear his voice, but I won’t hear if I don’t LISTEN. And if I’m going to truly listen for my Master’s voice, then I’m going to have to unplug. Turn off the noise in my head, my mind, my life. I need to find my quiet place and tune out everything else. Put myself within hearing distance to my Lord.

Jesus is the Only One who really knows me in this life. The Only One who has always known me, even before I was one day old. And, against all odds, He loves me anyway!! He loves me enough to promise that I will never perish… And I will never be snatched from His hand.

Featured image courtesy of snabur-cogito.blogspot.com

Hope In Front Of Me

It’s a gray dreary Friday, and it’s pouring rain, which is fine because it’s August in the bluegrass and we need rain every chance we can get! It spits against the window, drowning out any birdsong. They’re in hiding anyway, waiting for it to stop, finding shelter in the trees, hoping for a break in the action.

I woke up with hope singing in my mind this morning. A song called, Hope in Front of Me, by Danny Gokey. Here are the lyrics to the chorus…

There’s hope in front of me
There’s a light I still see it
There’s a hand still holding me
Even when I don’t believe it
I might be down but I’m not dead
There’s better days still up ahead
Even after all I’ve seen, there’s hope in front of me

“Hope in front of me.” What a great line! Hope, in all it’s glory and grace, boldness and beauty, is right in front of me if I will just open my eyes and see it. If I will look up instead of down, if I will reach out instead of inward to myself, Hope is standing right there, waiting for me to grab on with everything I have! Grab on, hold tight, and stand tall in the power of the Holy Spirit! That’s a promise in the scripture we can take to the bank.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. – Romans 15:13

Click here to listen to Hope in Front of Me.

I chose the featured image because kids are our hope!

 

Glorious Unfolding

What is it with 3:00 in the morning? Three days in a row, I’ve been awakened at 3:00 a.m. with part of a song, and then again when the clock goes off! This morning’s song fits perfectly with yesterday’s lyrics. On the heals of “no guilt, no shame, no pointing fingers, no blame” I heard these words from Stephen Curtis Chapman…

So hold on to every promise God has made to us
And watch this glorious unfolding

Like the other mornings, I didn’t hear the full song, just these two lines. I love the thought of a “glorious unfolding” and what that could mean. My Mamaw was a quilter and her momma before her and her momma before her. She passed it on to her daughter and a few of her granddaughters. I like to quilt and have made several, though my favorites are the quilts I make for my grandchildren when they are born.

When I think of a “glorious unfolding” I think of the time I watched my Mamaw unfold an antique quilt that her grandmother had made. It was made from dark, rich colors and fabrics and she had used a postage stamp as her pattern to cut the squares. As Mamaw unfolded that quilt, I watched in awe and amazement that something so beautiful could come from scraps. Tiny little perfect stitches held those tiny little squares together. Truly a work of art, though the woman who created it only made it to sleep under.

Part of the reason I like to quilt is the “making order out of chaos” part of it… Taking all those random squares or shapes and piecing them together into order. It quiets my mind and helps me sort through things. What if that’s exactly what God is doing right now? What if God is taking all the chaotic “squares” of my life and piecing them together so that, when my life is finished and I meet Him face to face, I see the glorious unfolding of the quilt of my life as only God could design it.

If I hold on to God’s promises, if I continue to follow Him and let the Holy Spirit lead me, HE will do the work. He will take all the scraps of my life and stitch them together into a work of art. And maybe those who come behind me, generations from now, will see my life and find me faithful.

Click here to listen to Glorious Unfolding by Stephen Curtis Chapman

 

Where feet may fail

Oceans. That’s the official title of the song in my head this morning. Here’s a link to hear an acoustic version… I love this one!! Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)

This is a United song (formerly Hillsong United) and one of my favorites. Here are some of the lyrics…

You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand

(Chorus)
And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior

Oh man is this one so packed full of what I need!!! For months and months I have felt God calling me to something else. But I haven’t yet gotten a definition for “else” or any sense of what “else” is going to look like. So when I hear this song, I just have to lift it as a prayer that God will lead me to whatever “else” is waiting for me. That the Holy Spirit will lead me to the place where my trust has no border, no limit. That God would take me deeper than my feet could ever wander, so that my faith will be all I have to stand on.

Even as I write that, it scares me to think about my faith being all I have to stand on because I love security. Having money in the bank and the bills paid. Food on the table and clothes in my closet. Being able to take a vacation every year if we want. Just the knowledge that these things are there and available is important to me. So if my faith is all I’m standing on, what happens next?

Then this line in the song jumps out at me… “In the presence of my Savior.” My faith is made stronger in the presence of my Savior. Not in my own strength or by actively doing anything… Except trusting. Without borders.

So I guess my job is to call on the name of Jesus and keep my eyes above the waves when they get too high. I love the promise in this song… My soul will rest in His embrace because I am His. And He is mine.