Written

Uncertainty need not lurk in our minds

Obsessing about allowed or forbidden

He’s won the war and determined our course

The end has already been written

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 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.”

Romans 8:37-39

“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

Phillipians 1:6

“For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” 1 John 5:4-5

Calling all Sinners

I desire mercy over sacrifice
I paid the highest price
For an open door to commune with you
So bow your knee, confess your sins
Follow Me and walk in truth.

“But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matthew 9:13

‘”Then Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are your accusers? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, Lord,” she answered. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Now go and sin no more.”’ John 8:10-11

For further discussion on this scripture, check out: https://www.christiantoday.com/article/what-does-it-mean-when-god-desires-mercy-over-sacrifice/88736.htm

Captain God

This restless sea inside of me

Tries to pull me under

But I’ve learned to sail by the winds of Your Word

Unmoved by strike nor thunder

My compass spins out of control

Guided by worry and doubt

But my Captain aboard anticipated the course

And lovingly steers the whole route

I cannot see what’s ahead of me

But certain treasures I know will be there

His companionship and peace sustain me

As I sail with my God in prayer.

Hope

Look up ahead! There is a clearing

A beam of sunlight past the bend

Can you see it? Do you feel it?

Heavenly hope streaming in

From a source so grand

Beyond our understand

It’s bubbling, now overflowing

Gifts pouring from His hand

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19

Pleading

Is my self deception too great for Your spirit?
My ears too clogged to hear Your Word?
Is my spirit too strong willed to sense your direction?
My vision too tainted to understand all observed?

If I have no ears to hear nor eyes to see
If all of my ambitions center around me
Then stop me in my path, turn me around
Whatever Your judgement, let it be.

But if I have sought and believed Your Word
If I have surrendered my will to Yours
Confessed my sin and trusted Your grace
Let not my prayers go unheard.

“But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” 1 John 1:9

“Now, will God not judge in favor of his own people who cry to him day and night for help? Will he be slow to help them?  I tell you, he will judge in their favor and do it quickly. But will the Son of Man find faith on earth when he comes?” Luke 18:7-8

Overruled

With a contrite heart, I come before You

Confessing all I’ve tried to control by my will.

With my troubled mind, I’ve justified

With my sinful flesh, I’ve refused to be still.

I’ve hoped beyond all human reason

That Your hand would still provide

A way out of this wilderness

Out of the mess we’ve contrived

Is it Your grace I have hoped for

Or my selfish desires to come true

Is it Your plan I envision

Or am I forcing my plan on You?

Roll in with a thunder

Strike with Your mighty hand

May Your will be done, not mine, I cry

But not let my tears thwart Your plan.

Gospel of Grace

In our longing for justice,
We argue, we reason, we explain
Hoping our offender
Will feel remorse for our pain

But where we have been wronged
We have wronged a thousand more
So we look to the cross
And see the grievances He bore

If we all weren’t in need of this grace
We could rest on our arguments
If all we had was our understanding
All through the day we’d lament

But thank God He teaches mercy
Thank God it’s not about evening the score
Thank God it’s not about who’s right or wrong
Thank God, grace gives so much more.

I Doubt It

Today all I can see is every dream that never came true
Every time I screamed out and never heard from You
Every loose end that never got tied
Every time I felt alone as I cried.

Today all I hear are the sneers of those mocking my faith
The repetition of questions never being set straight.
The deafening silence when I wait for You to make a move
The countless reasons to give up my faith til it’s proved.

Yet, my heart keeps calling out for You.

Worldly Affair, Heavenly Commitment

“I had this secret affair,” she said. “He loved me more than anyone could.

He bore his heart to me, brought his cares to me and listened equally as good.

The best of friends we quickly became

Our souls finding familiar comfort while passion filled the same.

But he had committed himself to another a long time ago.

He was not free to love me openly or so the story would go.”

So their commitment sat in silence, in a world all on it’s own

He would keep on loving her as long as he didn’t have to let the other go.

She cried out to the Lord in her desperation and pain

“Why give me this love that must stay hidden and contained?

Shouldn’t his love for me make it impossible to hide

Impossible to still hold onto another and in his closest companions not confide?”

And the Lord answered her: “Now I will ask the same question of you

Has your commitment to the world kept you silent of our love, too?

You walk with me each day, have come to know me and love me like no other

Yet keep me hidden from your world, contained as a secret lover.

Denounce your prior affinities, do not be ashamed

The intimacy we have grown by heart, now walk in the same.

Share our love story, no longer make me hide.

Let your faith in me match internally what is seen on the outside.”

“And I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness. Then you will know the Lord.” Hosea 2:20

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.  This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church.” Ephesians 5:31-32

Inevitable Pondering

Reaching for answers that aren’t there
Wondering if my wishes will vanish with the wind
Trying to make sense of the madness around me
Wondering what picture I fit in

Trying to grab hold of pleasures that pass me
To celebrate love and warm hearts
Distracted by horror stories, fears and theories
Unable to decide how true they all are

Building strength to stand on my convictions
With limited info to decide what those should be
Working day to day just to earn a living
Wondering if this is all that will become of me

At what point in time will the big picture be clear
When will we know what we chose to believe was right
I guess not until the ever after
So we keep saying our prayers every night

He Has Overcome the World

I can’t guarantee any outcome for tomorrow
Or even my breaths beyond today
But I can rest in the grace of my Savior
No matter how far I have fallen or strayed.

I can’t make my troubles on earth get better
But I can rejoice in heavenly truths
I can’t remove all fear or failures
But I can find real joy and peace in You

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.” 1 Peter 4:12-13

Firm Foundation

I’ll keep reminding myself
To place my hope in You
Not in another, not in a circumstance
Not in flashes of temporary hope before me
Nor memories of victories past
No, only in You
Will I hope and rely
On the Rock of Your truth and promises
Will I place each brick of my life.

“It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built.” Luke 6:48

Provisions

Though the path is hard
It’s not impossible.
For nothing is impossible with You
Though the way is dark
It’s not invisible
You shine Your light to see me through
Though my heart is broken
It’s not beyond repair
When placed into Your hands
Though my tears may fall
You’ll wipe them away
And not let them thwart Your plans.

Count on It

When life becomes too great to bear
And each moment met just furthers despair
When you’re left with no answer or ear to turn to
When failures and regrets all come crashing down on you

Count on the cross
Count on His grace
Count on His providence
To cover all that you face

Count on His goodness
Count on His love
Know for tomorrow
Your faith is enough

Prepared

Just because each step is heavy

Doesn’t mean it’s the wrong way to go

Laboring in each step is building my strength

And preparing me for what I don’t yet know

“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 13:8

Journey

I look on journeys past

And see the change they bore in me

I never would’ve planned these paths

Or the struggles they would bring

The battles are beyond hard

And oft take forever to win

My mind and heart get scarred

Then Your Word carries me back in

I look at journeys past

And see the victories they led me to

I take a deep breath, step out in faith

And set out on my next journey with You

“So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea. The Israelites went up out of Egypt ready for battle.” Exodus 13:18

“He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness for the sake of His name.” Psalm 23:3

Unchanging

Should sorrow come my way

and darkness cover all I see

Should I lose my dreams

And tragedy descend upon me

I’ll cling to You with my last grip

And place all my hope in You

Knowing your heavenly purposes

Prevail regardless of earthly truths

Your love remains the same

Your promises do not change

Devoted

If you love me, scream it from the mountain
If you love me, keep me close at all times
If you love me, believe me and act on your faith
If you love me, put all other loves aside

“Without growing weary, you have persevered and endured many things for the sake of My name. But I have this against you: You have abandoned your first love.” Revelation 2:3-4

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Deutoronomy 6:5

Faith or Works? Yes

Oh faith,

Will you crumble when put to the test?

Will you run and hide when you’re not approved by the rest?

Or will you put into practice all you’ve been shown

Speak boldly, stand strong even when all alone?

Faith without works is dead

Works without faith is misled

Demonstrate your faith by your works instead.

“What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,’ but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” James 2:14-17

Prodigals

Please carry the heavy load of our pasts
So we’d be free to walk along
Your predestined paths
Please cleanse us from our regret and shame
So our mouths would be confident
To share Your good name

“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” Isaiah 1:18

Not I but Christ

Disappointments and heartaches
We can give these to You
And attempt to align how we think
to Your Word and Your truths
So what do You say
About moments that don’t go our way
To remember You are Sovereign
And there are grander purposes at play

“Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.” Ephesians 1:11

Perfect Love

Your love does not sway
It can’t be altered or taken away
It doesn’t change with each passing season
It knows no limits, it surpasses all reason
Your love is better than life
More than our finite minds can possess
Your ultimate gift to us and reassurance
That in Your perfect love, we may breathe and rest.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:3).

“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 them” (1 John 4:16)

Step by Step

Return our gaze to You

After whiplash has struck

And our mind’s all a muck

Focus our efforts on each step

You’ve shown is right

Work hard, love hard

Pray in faith day and night

Submit to Your plan

Trust You to see it through

Surrender answers we don’t have

Choose to trust in You

Gift of Sight

Is this a distraction or Your plan of action

A promise fulfilled or my tainted will

A gift so wise or a clever disguise

Oh, wash these corroded scales

from my eyes

So I would see, I would decipher

How to choose wisely for my ever after


“And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;” Acts 9:18

Sacrifice – The Essence of His Love

May I never grow complacent
Toward You or Your love
May my eyes never wonder
Lest I forget that You’re enough

Your love is pure
Your thoughts are gold
Your intentions holy
Your passion, bold

You sent Your Son as the greatest sacrifice
Your unequivocal love on display
You saw our debt and You paid the price
Revealing Your love in the costliest of ways.

“Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you.”

Psalm 63:3

Intercession

I cry out to You in my brokenness
With no other place to turn
I’ll rely on my utterances
Since my heart can’t find the words

“Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.”

Romans 8:26

Doubting Thomas

I did everything the Bible told me to
I forsook all others
And followed after You

You said when I confessed all my sin
That You cleansed, You forgave
When I believed with all my heart
You had washed all my sin away

You said my weakness was my strength
Because where I am weak You are strong
You said I could trust in Your grace
But this now appears all wrong

You have not kept Your promises
Your Word has not proven to be true
You have forsaken and abandoned me
Unless there never really was a You.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.

Isaiah 55:8

My God! My God! Why have you abandoned me?
Why are you so far from delivering me— from my groaning words?
My God, I cry out to you throughout the day, but you do not answer;
and throughout the night, but I have no rest.

Psalm 22:1-2

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

John 14:18

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Psalm 30:5

If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.

2 Timothy 2:13

Blind Faith

You know what’s truth and what is false
You know how and where to direct our feet
You know why the sun rises each day
You know what gives our hearts their beat
You know the reasons disappointments come
You separate the land from the sea
When the sun doesn’t rise or a heart is lost
You still call us to trust in Your Sovereignty

Just This Day

Summer is here, let the classes and camps begin!  This year the summer activities we signed our boys up for all happen to fall on the same two weeks.  Coordinating all of the pick ups and drop offs has taken quite a bit of concentration and effort.  Band for one kid at 10:20, Basketball for another at 1, basketball for the other at 2:20, Ninja training at 4 and carpooling a group of kids to drama rehearsal at 5 and 10 pm, and a partridge in a pear tree. 

As I was preparing to let the boy’s dad know which pick ups and drop offs he could help with on Wednesday, my mind jumped to thinking about the details of Thursday.  That thought felt quite overwhelming as each day this week has it’s own specific minute details.  So, I decided we would just go over the details one day at a time.  Let us get through the details of Wednesday and help that run as smooth as possible before we start working out and discussing the details for Thursday.  Otherwise, our minds may explode. 

And it dawned on me that God probably has that same desire for us when giving direction. Each day has it’s own challenges, it’s own details, it’s own decisions to be made and acted on. Yet, when seeking direction from Him, we tend to want to know our entire future. “Can’t You just give us the entire picture now?!” I know for me, I rarely stop and ask for just the directions He has that one day. No, I want to know exactly what the directions will be for the next and the next and the next instead of trusting Him for the big picture and walking with Him one day at a time.

Lord, You know the details and needs of this day. You know the challenges and decisions we will face. You see down the road and know what direction You would have us take today. When we turn to the left or the right, let us hear You say “this is the way, now walk in it”.

“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”  Matthew 6:34

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21

Deep Roots

We excuse sin, we allow it

We think we know what’s best

We minimize it’s consequences

We trivialize it’s effects

We defend sin

We excuse it based on needs

We fail to see participating

Only plants new seeds

Turn away! Eradicate it!

Before it’s roots take hold

Turn away, even run!

Before more sin’s conceived.

“The iniquities of a wicked man entrap him; the cords of his sin entangle him.” Proverbs 5:22

In the Lion’s Den

I went in with the lions
And yet came out alive
Unscathed to tell the story
Of how and by Whom I survived
Clearly not by strength
Not by my wit nor guile
But because the Lord, He fought for me
And always wins the battle

“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14

19At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?” Daniel 6:19-20

Eternal

Rejoice in that which can’t be taken away

His promises for each new day

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. Jeremiah 29:11

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28