January 29, 2013

What I'm Listening To: How God is Wooing My Heart Through Song

My children have a love for all things music.

My daughter sings and writes her own songs, plays the piano and guitar, and just got a ukulele for Christmas. Since I am her mom and it's my joy and privilege to brag on her, I would like to just say that she's amazing. (smile) God has clearly given her a special gift and we can hardly wait to see what he has in store for her future.


My son is a budding guitarist and though his interests lie more in sports, science, history, Call of Duty and anything else related to blowing things up and taking down the enemy, he also has a knack for creating awesome music. 


They both fill our home with so much life and sound and in some wonderful way, they put our days... our story... to music and it's fabulous.

I, on the other hand, am not musical. 

Not. At. All.

I don't sing or play any instruments... at least not well. Sometimes I'll sit at the keyboard or pick up the guitar and attempt to play a song and sing a few lines, but it never quite sounds right or great, and everyone gets a good laugh. I'm happy I can entertain them.

I do love and enjoy music though and God often uses it to draw my heart to him. Many times a song will put to words exactly what I feel when I can't find my own words. It may draw me to worship and to rest in his presence, or God may use a song to guide me, to call me out and up and inspire me to greater things.

Over the next week or so I'm doing a series on what I'm listening to... how God is wooing my heart through song. I'll share the ones that are currently playing on repeat in my heart and mind and I'll unpack a bit of what they mean to me, how God is speaking through them.

I would love for you to join me! I welcome your comments and I'd love to hear how God is wooing you through music, what's currently playing across your heart and mind.

Stay tuned...

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January 24, 2013

Comfortable

Sometimes I long for the comfortable, for the easy and predictable, and for an all-my-dreams-coming-true life. Sometimes I long for these things much more than just sometimes and the longing too much turns to restlessness and my days feel heavy and disappointing.


My man and I are cliff jumpers. It's just the way we live. Many years back we chose to live a life of faith like we'd never known before and we traded in the safe, predictable, and easy for a life of mystery and adventure with God.  A life that couldn't promise comfort and most certainly would require huge leaps of faith with nothing but sheer trust in our God.

Over the years we've jumped more cliffs than I ever dreamed possible and some I never dreamed God would call us to. Though he was right there with us in every leap, we didn't always land as softly and sure-footed as I would have hoped or liked. Some jumps even left us battered and bruised, dazed and confused, and definitely not comfortable.

We're never guaranteed that life will be easy and safe when we walk with God. Just look at the life of Job. In fact, the scriptures have a lot to say about trials and suffering and the part they play in our faith and journey. God is not necessarily safe but he is good. He's very, very good. I know that for sure.

I still want to live this cliff jumping life whether it's comfortable or not. Honestly, it's how I have to live because to live any other way would be false and denying what is true to my core... to know and love and follow hard after God. Whatever that looks like. Whatever that costs.

But sometimes...

Oh how I ache and yearn for the comfortable.

Maybe it's a quiet street in a friendly neighborhood with a sweet little home of our own to grow old in. Or dear friends close by to love on us, lend a helping hand when needed, and come over often to share a meal. Maybe it's being able to see around the bend and prepare for what's ahead, or perhaps it's just simply taking a rest from hurling ourselves off so many cliffs.

Though my heart says yes to all these things, I know that true comfort isn't found in people, or in a place, or in a false sense of control. It's found right here, where we are, right where Jesus has us, in the middle of stress and uncertainty, living in the not easy and the often unpredictable.

It's found in Jesus and in him alone.


We woke this morning to a beautiful blanket of snow that had fallen through the night. I drank in the beauty as I stood quietly at my sunroom window and watched the sun rise to peek through the clouds and shine on our life below.

Jesus was near.  

He knows what a fresh blanket of snow does for my heart.  

Peace.

Hope.

Comfort.

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January 22, 2013

Ever Changing

My blog has another new look.  I have to laugh.  How many times have I changed its design since I first started blogging?  At least five and I'm sure this won't be the last.

My blog seems to be ever-changing just as I am ever-changing.  I am not the same woman I was last May when it first came to be.  Thank goodness the journey of healing and growing and learning and becoming continues and never ends.  God is always up to and after more in us.  I'm grateful and relieved that I'm not the woman I once was, but I'm confident and hopeful and excited that I am not yet the woman I will be.

I love these lyrics from the song "Shadowfeet" by Brooke Fraser:

Walking, stumbling on these shadow feet
Toward home, a land that I’ve never seen
I am changing, less and less asleep
Made of different stuff than when I began

Yes, I am changing.  I am less and less asleep and certainly made of different stuff than when I began.

Ever changing...

Ever becoming...

Thank you, Jesus.


"For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you 
will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus." 
 ~Philippians 1:6



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January 17, 2013

Impasses and Moving Forward

Sometimes I wish I wrote a food blog where I would share delicious recipes and post beautiful, mouth-watering photos of my culinary creations.  Or maybe a home-decorating blog where I'd consider endless ways to display knick knacks and share how-to's on arranging and distressing furniture.  Both would be tons of fun and much, much easier to write than a blog about my journey and heart.

It's been five weeks since I last wrote a post and though I'd like to blame my lack of words on the busy holidays, the putting away of Christmas, and the start of a new year, the quiet has been due more to the fact that I hit an impasse with my writing.  My words ran out for a time and I kind of lost my way.  Over the past few weeks I've been pondering and praying over the questions... Why do I write?  Who am I writing for?  What is God after in my heart through this blog?  What does he have in store?  Where does my blog... where do I... go from here?

I love to write.  I love words and the art of crafting them together to express my heart.  I feel drawn to writing and know that God has called me to it, but at times it is immensely difficult.  To boldly hold my heart out to be seen and heard, especially here on the internet, feels incredibly vulnerable, naked, and raw.  Sometimes I feel really brave and other times I feel very foolish.  Most of the time, I have absolutely no idea how my words are being interpreted, if they make any sense at all, and if they are touching the hearts of others and bringing life like I so desire.

Every now and then, I just want to be silent and tuck my heart and all that's treasured there, away where no one can see and hear it and I don't have to be brave.  I know it's okay to go there, to rest and be quiet for a bit, but I also know I can't stay there for long.  God made me to be a writer.  It's part of my design and how he's written himself on my heart.  When I write, I feel his pleasure... his delight.

Weeks later, I still don't have answers to all of my questions.  I'm still praying and pondering, but I'm also moving forward beyond the impasse, trusting Jesus in the process, and once again, boldly and vulnerably, holding my heart out to be seen and heard.  I can't help it.  It's who I am.



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