Sunday, November 9, 2008

When my mind starts to wander.....

Not long ago a non-Christian asked me what I thought about other religions. As much as I hated to admit I said that I didn't have the knowledge or information to provide a valid argument as to why I oppose those religions. Most religions I didn't know anything about. So I decided to educate myself on the basics of some of the world's most popular religions. And today I read about Buddhism. I don't agree with Buddhism at all, mind you, BUT I think that if I applied some of their ideas to my relationship with God it would help me to become closer to Him and bring Him glory.
Today I read about the Noble Eightfold Path. While Buddhists use this path to gain enlightenment, I would rather use to for God's glory.
1. Right view: the right way of looking at life, nature and the world as they really are. A reality check if you will. It reminds me of a C. S Lewis quote I read "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun rises, not only because I see it but because by it I see everything else."
2.Right intention: constantly aspire to get rid of any qualities that are wrong or immoral. Immediately my mind jumped to Phillipians 4:8 "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." And then I looked up "immoral" in my concordance and this verse jumped at me. Colossians 3:5 "Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry." and then it goes on later to say Colossians 3:7-8"You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips." We are called to rid ourselves of these qualities and with God's help we can. God's amazing like that ^_^
3. Right speech: abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, and from idle chatter. Something I think we should ALL do because it is something we are all guilty of. There are many proverbs that mention this. Proverbs 10:31 "The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, but a perverse tongue will be cut out." I really liked Proverbs 12:18 "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing." What first came to mind was the verse about the tongue being a double edged sword, but I couldn't find it anywhere. :(
4. Right action: living morally upright in the activities of life. What sprang to mind was what Jesus said in Matthew 25: 34-40 "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'
Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'
The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me."
Ok that is all for now....I will give you the rest of the 8 after lunch (Office quote...I couldn't help myself!)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Ok so I'm reading a book right now that is basically blowing my mind.
Once my mind is done being blown and I get all my thoughts together I shall post

Friday, October 10, 2008

Life would be so simple.....

"She said, 'Life would be so simple if we all just learned to pray'. "
This single line from the song " Everything Little Thing" by Hawk Nelson is what I first thought of while reading about David this afternoon.
As I was reading in 2 Samuel I noticed a phrase that kept repeating itself.
"And David prayed to God...."
Before every battle these words were written. I found that quite interesting. I wonder about my everyday life, minute by minute. How many times do I go to God seeking direction? How many times do I make snap decisions, decisions that need God at their very center?
Looking back, not many. Yes I pray. But do I wait around and listen for an answer?

David demolished enemy after enemy. If I were David, and I'm glad I wasn't, I would have thought after the first couple of enemy smashings that I could do it on my own and not consult God. Good thing I'm me and not David!

And David's humbleness just blows me away. He restored all of Saul's properties to Saul's lame grandson (not uncool...but actually lame as in can't walk...thought I would clarify), Jonathan's son. And in 2 Samuel 7:18-29 David prays one of the most touching prayers. Here is the beginning:
"Who am I, my Master God, and what is my family, that you have brought me to this place in life? But that's nothing compared to what's coming, for you've also spoken of my family far into the future, given me a glimpse into tomorrow, my Master God! What can I possibly say in the face of all this? You know me, Master God, just as I am. You've done all this not because of who I am but because of who you are-out of your very heart!-but you've let me in on it"
After all of David's accomplishments and in spite of his adoring fans, he still falls on his knees in front of his Adonai and wonders why God chose him to bestow all of these blessings upon.

As I read further I noticed a story where the words "David prayed to God" were no where to be found. The story of David and Bathsheba. Hmmm...I wonder why!? I think David already knew the answer to that prayer.
ok..Panera is about ready to close, gotta wrap it up!
This is the aforementioned song. "Every little thing" by Hawk Nelson.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Sound of Grace

A thought popped in my head last night as we were singing "Amazing Grace" at church
"Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me"
How sweet the sound? Of Grace? What exactly does grace sound like? Is it the huge sigh of relief of knowing that everything will be ok, even though it shouldn't be? Or is it the sound of grateful weeping, tears of joy that you just couldn't hold back? It really piqued my interest. Unfortunately for you I don't have an answer.
I do know what grace looks like. Grace takes the form of a cross. No..I take that back. Grace takes the form of a man:
Beautiful and Wise
Loving and Humorous
Tenacious and Comforting
Pure and Holy
And that man was nailed to a cross.

I was listening to Phil Wickham.
Big surprise I know.
His song "Home" came upon my Ipod (Gershwin) and the lyrics spoke to me, nothing new there, but they spoke to me in a completely different way. Here is a taste of the lyrics:

I know You've heard this all before
When I'm down and crying on the floor
Saying I want You and nothing more

But I'm breaking in my heart tonight
I've tried to stand I've tried to fight
But I cannot see without Your light
No I cannot breathe without You

I cannot count how many times I've done this. Falling before my Adonai, a broken-hearted fool, and praying, nay crying; telling Him that he is all I want and nothing more.
And He comes to me every single time.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me...

Here is Phil's song. I swear I will put more music on here besides Phil Wickham. The video is kinda loud, so you may want to turn down your volume. I didn't know that when I was at Panera and my earphones blasted be grateful for the warning ;)

Here is his story behind "Home" which I stumbled across in finding the video above. I absolutely love it...

Monday, October 6, 2008

David...a Man after God's own Heart

One person has been on my mind all day: David.
War hero.
Musical Prodigy.
And through grace was still called a man after God's own heart.
The man is obviously too great and his history too extensive to put in a blog. But I really wonder how he felt sometimes. This man, at a young age, took down a giant with nothing but a slingshot and a couple stones. It would be pretty hard not to let that go to your head, to accept the praise that people gave and think you did it all on your own. Yet his ego never swelled. That along with being chosen by the king to play music for him. Being crowned king..and many many other accomplishments he still, for the most part, remained a humble man of God. I honestly couldn't do it. My pride and ego would be bigger than the Titantic. Why was he like this? Because "The Spirit of God entered David like a rush of wind, God vitally empowering him for the rest of his life" 1 Samuel 16:13 (msg) Wow. I bet that was interesting to watch.
And the man had the faith to rock the depths of the ocean. After being told by King Saul that he basically couldn't fight Goliath David answered, "I've been a shepherd, tending sheep for my father. Whenever a lion or bear came and took a lamb from the flock, I'd go after it, knock it down, and kill it. Lion or bear, it made no difference-I killed it. And I'll do the same to this Philistine pig who is taunting the troops of God-Alive. God, who delivered me from the teeth of the lion and the claws of the bear, will deliver me from this Philistine" 1 Samuel 17:34-37. I can just imagine, after that speech, King Saul replying timidly "Touche"
It is widely known that there is nothing special about being a shepherd. Yet God chose this man, a lowly shepherd, to do the unimaginable.
Everyone loved David. Men, women, and children from the villages of Israel praised David. Everyone admired him except Saul. Even Saul's sons and daughters loved David. The bible says that Michal, Saul's daughter, was in love with David (1 Samuel 18:20) and that Jonathon, Saul's son, had a deep love for David (1 Samuel 18:5) and treasured him (1 Samuel 19:1) and even warned David of his father's evil plot to kill him. (1 Samuel 19:2)
That's a whole lot of lovin' in the kingdom of Israel.
And although it is tragic I do love Jonathon and David's story of friendship. Friendship that is tested time and again. True friendship is what these men shared. I had never really read about Jonathon and David before, but now I am touched by them. Their story, found in 1 Samuel 20, is an amazing story of love, friendship and loyalty.
And the songs that David wrote; the groans and cries of a man beaten and broken and the praises and amorous words that still reflect and comfort us more than 2000 years later. His skill on the harp and lyre were unparalleled and can you imagine his voice? I bet it was the Three Tenors meets Josh Groban. A voice so beautiful and soothing....but powerful and passionate. A voice that reflects the heart within.
The man honestly blows my mind. It's a shame that there isn't more historical evidence of him outside of the bible. I can't wait to learn more about him and how God worked in his life. What I need is one of those "Idiots Guide to David"

And this post wouldn't be complete without a song from our own modern David, although he is no king or shepherd and hopefully not a murderer, he is a man who's lyrics and songs speak to many as their hearts speak to the Lord. He is Phil Wickham
Here in the Quiet speak to me now
My ears are open to
Your gentle sweet whispering
Break down the door, come inside
Shine down Your bright light
I need a lamp for my feet, I need a lamp for my feet

I want to hear the thunder of who You are
To be captured inside the wonder of who You are
I want to live I want to breathe
To search out Your heart and all of Your mysteries

You were the first and You’ll be the end
Time cannot hold You down
Why save a wretch like me?
No eye has seen, no ear has heard
No heart could fully know
All of Your mystery

Your glory burns in the stars
Shine down your light let it burn in my heart
Bring me to glory, bring me to you
Lord it’s your heart that I will hold onto

Your glory burns in the stars
Shine down Your light let me know who You are
Jesus, Your glory burns in the stars
Shine down Your light, let me see You, let me see You

(acoustic version below...I'm a sucker for acoustic)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Life at Present

I'm not gonna lie. I've had fun playing with this blog. Even though I haven't posted anything in over a year, and boy has my life changed drastically in that year. Right now I need somewhere to post my thoughts on....well just about everything. Everything from wonderful friends who are too far away to what God has shown me through his word or blessings.

Tonight I will makes the first blog simple: Lip gloss.
Lip gloss is by far one of my favorite thing about being a girl. Chapstick is also very very nice. I have a heater under my desk at work and when I turn it on it radiates heat under my desk drawer....right where my lip gloss is. After a while with that heater I go to put on nice warm lip gloss....heaven on earth. It has been and continues to be one of the highlights of my day.

Current SONG obession.....I hate to say it....Lovebug by Jonas Brothers. I can't even begin to describe how happy this song makes me. Just the beat of it..and the lyrics obviously. They are ridiculously sweet and someday I hope someone sings this song with me in mind.
Called you for the first time yesterday
Finally found the missing part of me
Felt so close but you were far away
Left me without anything to say

Now I’m speechless
Over the edge and just breathless
I never thought that I’d catch this
Love bug again
Hopeless head over heels in the moment
I never thought that I’d get hit
With this love bug again

I can’t get your smile out of my mind
I think bout your eyes all the time
Beautiful but you don’t even try
Modesty is just so hard to find

Now I’m speechless
Over the edge and just breathless
I never thought that I’d catch this
Love bug again
Hopeless, head over heels in the moment
I never thought that I’d get hit
With this love bug again

Kissed her for the first time yesterday
Everything I wished that it would be
Suddenly I forgot how to speak
Hopeless, breathless, baby can’t you see

Now I’m…
(Guitar solo!)

Yahow!!! (I really like that part)

Now I’m speechless!
Over the edge and just breathless!
I never thought that I’d catch this!
Love bug again!
Now I’m hopeless, head over heels in the moment!
I never thought that I’d get hit!
With this love bug again!
Ohh oho

Love bug again