Saturday, July 4, 2015

Dance With Me

dance with me and my broken heart
with the wind
you make all things new
from your box of treasures
you open up
the perfect heart for me
dance with me and my aching spirit
with the wind
you weep with me
from your love so pure and sweet
you give
a brand new heart to me
dance with me and my wounded soul
with the wind
you father me
in your swaying embrace
you whisper
you impart
the perfect heart to me

Beautiful Array

She’s waiting for her moment to arrive
She’s praying to break through to the sky
To soar in that place
Where the world and all the devils of hell
Cannot damper the radiance that ignites the world around her
She is dancing
In the wondrous, glorious wonder of Father
Like the stars she shines
Fragrance arises from all that once was suffering
Beauty comes alive
like flowers blooming from that which once was a field of ashes
She is clothed in a garment, the applause of heaven
And the alabaster jar is broken at his feet
In that place where she weeps
Love beats, pulsates, like the deep pumping of the heart
And from the depths of her brokenness
The healing balm of Gilead flows
All that oozes from her is like perfume
The scent of heaven
She lights up the world and the sky in beautiful array

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Well Done, Good and Faithful Servant

This post will perhaps not be typical, but more of a pondering of some thoughts.  But I’ll try to frame this in a way that I hope will be encouraging for you.  Perhaps challenging as well.  Tonight, as Leslie and I were talking while eating dessert at a frozen yogurt place, the Scripture in Hebrews 11 came up:

“These all died in faith, not having received the promises… And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.” (vs. 13, 39-40)

There are some things that I truly believe God has called me to do, but I have not yet walked fully into that calling.  These things I want to do.  I want to accomplish something significant for God’s kingdom.  I want my life to count for eternity.  When I get to heaven, I want to receive a great reward. 
One of the things I believe God has called Leslie and I to do is to preach the gospel in other countries.  That is a big desire of mine, a dream I believe is from God.  I want to see God move through our lives in power and compassion.  But what if it never happens?  What if I never preach in another country again in my lifetime?  What if Jesus comes back before the dream is fulfilled?  In fact, what if my reward in heaven is not tied to the fulfillment of that purpose?  What if my reward in heaven has nothing to do with how many people I lead to Jesus or how many sermons I preach?  What if my reward is tied to how well my life is a reflection of the character of Christ?  What if my reward is tied to how well I love my wife? 
In this season of my life, I'm focused mostly on getting through law school, building our marriage, and, I hope, on spending time with the Lord.  In addition, since I'm not taking classes this summer and I have to work only 20 hours a week, I have time to enjoy some other things.  I'm able to do things perhaps I’d not be able to do if I were working full time or taking classes. 
In Texas, prior to moving to Virginia, I was working full time, commuting in Dallas traffic, and I was involved at church.  We miss Texas and our friends there.  Sometimes I feel a little lonely.  I miss being involved at our church.  I especially miss singing in the choir and on the worship team.  I think serving at church helped me feel like I was doing something for the Lord.  It was part of my identity.  At our church I felt like I was part of something significant for God’s kingdom.  That said, I’m thankful for this new season, despite its challenges.  I’m thankful this summer has given me a chance to slow down. 
In Luke 10 Jesus said,

“Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.  Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (vs. 19-20, emphasis mine).

Tonight I feel a contentment in my spirit.  My identity is not tied to what I’m accomplishing for the Lord.  My identity is in Him, in my relationship with Him.  My identity is in knowing that He loves me and that I love Him.  It feels good to feel loved.  Things in life are not easy; sometimes they are very difficult, very challenging.  But, tonight… tonight I feel good. 
Please don’t get me wrong.  I believe God wants us to do great things for Him.  I believe that God has specific things for us to accomplish (see Ephesians 2:10).  God wants us to serve others and love our neighbors.  He is very concerned about the harvest.  He says, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.  Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” (Matt 9:38-39)  I want to be part of His end-time harvest!  We all have an important part to play in it.  But at the end of the day, God wants us to be faithful where He has placed us right now, wherever that may be – whether it’s working in Dallas, in Virginia at law school, or in Africa preaching the gospel.
I think the most important thing in life is to spend time with the Lord, in His presence.  When we set our hearts towards loving Him, knowing Him, and seeking Him, He sets everything else in our lives in the right place.  We get our marching orders from Him.  When He says “Go,” we go.  And sometimes He says “stay,” and so we stay and rest in Him.  Even if we never accomplish for God what we may think is something significant, we can rejoice in the most important thing – that our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.  Our eternity is secure.  That’s a great place to be.
We can look forward to the day when we’ll hear Him say those words, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.” (Matt. 25:21).