Holy Broken

My dark heart, on blast in my actions, drives me to glimpse God’s heart in fasting. He reveals much in Isaiah 58, Behold you fast only to quarrel and to fight….Is such the fast that I choose?….Will you call this a fast and a day acceptable to the Lord? It pleases Him when we commit to restraining our flesh that His Spirit may grow stronger within us, but never at the cost of peace. Never at the cost of justice. Never to turn our eyes inward, but to turn them Upward.

So I know, that in seeking Him, I have been a Pharisee (that nemesis of Jesus we all pretend not to be). For the family member who intrudes on what has become “my” time receives a snippy retort. And suddenly I have not loved God, but myself; for every human who walks on this planet, and in the halls of my home, bears God’s image on earth ((for good or for evil)). It is revealed that my seeking is now motivated by what I can get instead of Who He Is. How I yearn to be available to His call. How often I miss the mark by the log in my eye (Matt. 7:5).

Anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.~1 John 4:8

Oh, that my days may be acceptable to Him.

It is imperative that I live broken because of the paradox of Christian existence. This paradox is that though my days on earth will never be flawless & sweet aromas to Him, yet, in Christ, they always will be (even in my legacy of sin & hypocrisy?!). How can it be so?

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.~Psalm 139:6

What mad contradiction it is as I cry out with the saints: I BELIEVE; oh, help my unbelief (Mark 9:24)! Like roots & weeds, the good & bad exist alongside each other within us. In our Lord, the weeds can be strangled, and the plant can grow strong, sending off seeds on the wind in every direction, until He gathers us all, in holiness, to His rest. But we must acknowledge our imperfection. We must live with two realities before us: 1) my sin, 2) His glory. The sin to make us broken, the Glory to lift up our heads, to be a gentle palm beneath the chin saying, “smile, HIS is the victory, ain’t no grave gonna hold you down[Crowder].”

But He Himself [Jesus] will be refreshed from brooks along the way. He will be victorious.~Psalm 110:7

I can measure His love as tidy as a tablespoon of turmeric: Jesus came, He lived covered in woodchips & sinlessness, He set into motion a movement of followers that would bring every nation to Him in worship & then…He died as a criminal.

For in Him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through Him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of His cross. ~Colossians 1:19&20

Teach me to feed my body with food & my soul with Your word. Free from trying to nourish my soul with the temporary food of this life. Only sometimes overlapping the two when my body is sustained by the strength of Your Word (may it be so!) in a fast that pleases You.

Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. ~Galations 5:24

For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly, but the haughty he knows from afar.~Psalm 138:6

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Head, Hands, Feet

So I went to sing songs in the kids class this morning (like I do every Sunday) and we sang the hymn When I Survey the Wonderful Cross.  Then I migrated to my “adult” (what does that even mean, really?) Sunday school class where we sang O the Wonderful Cross: a slight rendition of the aforementioned, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.  I enjoyed that because it was a little bit different.  Yay.  Guess what we sang in actual worship?? When I Survey…!!!   Hahahaha!  Funny, but I wasn’t as annoyed as you’d think a typical American would be over that. Why?  Because I saw a parallel between it, and my life.  That song contains the Gospel.  Week after week, day after day, God shows me the Gospel.  He lays it in front of me saying, “Eat this, the bread of life,” and then He weeps as I exchange it for the bread of the flesh.  He holds on, however, and He offers the bread once more.  He plays that song again:

When I survey the wondrous cross

On which the Prince of glory died,

My richest gain I count but loss,

And pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,

Save in the death of Christ my God!

All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood.

See from His head, His hands, His feet,

Sorrow and love flow mingled down!

Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,

Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

Were the whole realm of nature mine,

That were a present far too small;

Love so amazing, so divine,

Demands my soul, my life, my all.

On Sundays He sings it to me like a melody. Most of the time He has to scrape it into my skin like tattoo ink.

Thanks for doing that, Jesus. I love you.

Beauty Riot

Though I am not doing what I would have chosen to do

Let my song be sung to You

Though I do not dance to the rhythm of the places I wish to be

Let my song be sung to You

Though my eyes do not see what I wish to behold and my spirit is not captured by the everyday

Let my song be sung to You

Let my lifeblood tattoo the melody: You. You. You.

May the pulsating crescendo of my respiration croon the harmony of redemption

My banner, my mantra, my rally point; truth in riot.

Photo by Carly Fehlberg (raephotoblog.blogspot.com)

Forward Motion

1) To know love-expressing it in the same way Jesus did, through humble sacrifice.

2)To be healthy: body, spirit, mind.

3)To walk by faith, secure in God’s loving and error-less plan for me.

4) To share the Gospel everyday, by feeding, fixing, and speaking the Truth.

5)To avoid waste.

These are not concrete things, but they are all I have. This is what I will go on. My graduation resolution. In the manner outlined above, with the strength endowed to me by the Spirit of Light, I will walk on. Ready I am to go, putting on my nomadic nature, walking into the wilderness of grace, uncovering the mystery of my future. Dirt will come, filth will invade, risks will be taken. Forward He will  lead me, blind but by faith, I shall proceed.

The Ends of the Earth, The Heart of My Community

You’re the Author and Finisher of our faith

This love that we give is Yours to take

Lord take our souls fill our hearts

We live to glorify You

 I count the cost to follow You and say

 Let Your kingdom come and

Let Your will be done

On earth, as it is in Heaven

God always provides the encouragement that we need. The only way to truly say thank you is to do the same for others. Here’s to letting the Great Commission shape my daily life.

NOMADS 2012 (www.heartofgod.com)

Future For Us

That long moment after you kick the wall, before you break through the water, when the liquid distorts your perception of the gym ceiling. When I pass a green field full of horses singing, Aaaaamen, A-a-men, to a tune as timeless as Dick Clark’s New Year’s Eve smile. Those moments spent with children in your lap, jumping, bouncing, singing, playing. That sitting down after a seven hour shift.

Heaven is (all of the above).

Heaven is God living in me.

Heaven is knowing Him more.

I, like every other human being alive today-no exceptions-am quite lacking. I do not deserve such precious moments; I do not deserve a single moment. Neither does anyone else. We have all fallen tragically short. God sees our immorality and He hates it. He deserves to kill us, to obliterate the castle of sand that we call life. But He does not. He does not because there is a way. Jesus. The only way.

How great the pain of searing loss/the Father turns His face away

He bought us, convicted slaves awaiting trial. He freed us. He is the only way.

That is Heaven. The Holy Spirit given to those who accept Jesus’ offer of grace.

Knowing God, being certain of the future. That is Heaven.

For the love of God, I want more

Done With the First Hurrah!

When humans look forward to events they inevitably create expectations for them. Imagination steps in, with or without invitation. Generally expectations for an event that are fabricated differ significantly from the reality.

For an increasingly long time I have been looking forward to graduating high school. Not a week has passed in the last year that I did not once consider “life after high school” and all the pleasantries sure to accompany such liberation. Graduation day has been a mystically ellusive date-not unlike a possible wedding date, the second coming, or the continuation of Firefly-for years now. All this time I have been entertaining personal expectations for graduation and-more specifically, liberally, and poignantly-the years to follow: life. In the context of post-high school graduation this word has become a sweet ocean breeze to my consciousness. Ah, that time to go and to be, hard though I will find it.

Now the time approaches. This is the home stretch. In just over a month, I will have graduated from high school. That time period, often questioned in importance, will be through. It will fade in my rearview mirror of life. But it is all approaching differently than I expected it to. I thought I would have plans. I thought everything would have fallen into place by now. I took my ability to walk for granted. Here comes the end of a season; before I know it an empty chapter shall be open at my pen. The thing is, I am not the only one writing the story. There is something much bigger going on, above my line of thinking, that bleeds into the realm of belief. It is a little unnerving that everything is turning out so differently from those expectations I have established over the years, but I know that I still make the choices that lead me on. Truly, there is no reason to panic. Whatever happens is going to be an adventure! Done with the first hurrah, it is time to begin something new. Regardless of what leads up to the transition, I am still so ready for it.

 

Harry winked at them, turned to Uncle Vernon, and followed him silently from the station. There was no point worrying yet, he told himself, as he got into the back of the Dursley’s car. As Hagrid had said, what would come, would come…and he would have to meet it when it did. ~J.K. Rowling

Weep For Passion

What Christians call “Passion Week” began yesterday.

It is the climax of our faith. We believe that the week we now observe changed life for all humans, forever. Yet looking back, it is extraordinarily hard to understand the agony that Jesus overcame.

He prayed through the night. He begged. Blood fell from Him-the struggle was so real.

Humiliation.

A week spent knowing that death by torture was imminent.

Living enshrouded by a cloud of darkness, unable to fight against it.

He was, and continues to be so good. My heart weeps for passion: His passion that bought us life.

 

If I tell you, you will not believe, and if I ask you, you will not answer. But from now on the Son of Man shall be seated at the right hand of the power of God.

All is Not Well

I keep subconsciously repressing any of my thoughts that feed the idea that something in my life is wrong. I try and force myself to believe that because I have God and light in and around me, nothing can be messed up. This is wrong. I know now that all is not right. I need to swallow this reality. God is good, perfect. My soul rests in peace because of the reality of his grace. A life lived without exotic travels, long hikes, and rockwall climbing can still be a great one. Truth be told, though, people are dying. Children go hungry. Men kill men. Animals drown. Girls are raped. I cannot take a step without experiencing grating physical pain. All is not well. Living in this reality would be nearly intolerable if hope for a fine future was not instilled in me. I am broken physically and spiritually. The world is broken in every way but God did not create mankind to watch us suffer. This is all wrong.

Thanks, praise be for love! Healing. Mercy. All that is wrong-everything-shall be made new and fresh. I long to breathe deeply of  clean and free air that is so for everyone. I yearn to take a painless walk on the beach, to ride my bike cross-country. Shards of imperfection is today’s reality. Denial of this is futile. Immersion is imperative. Liberation is imminent. He will come. All shall be most well.

 

Through the love of Christ our Saviour, all will be well

Free and changeless is His favor, all is well

Ours is such a full salvation, all shall be well