we have sailed too close to the shore

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly, To venture on wider seas Where storms will show Your mastery; Where losing sight of land, We shall find the stars. We ask You to push back The horizons of our hopes; And to push into the future In strength, courage, hope, and love.

Disturb us, Lord, when we are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show Your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.
We ask You to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.

This we ask in the name of our Captain, who is Jesus Christ.

-Sir Francis Drake

i’m okay with being weak

God pushes past the ones who gain the most attention based on the standards of the world. He finds the woman hiding in her fear and insecurity and pulls her out as his chosen one to be used for his kingdom.

 

Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him. God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe…but we preach Christ crucified…God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things- and the things that are not- to nullify the things that are so that no one may boast before him.’ // 1 Corinthians 1:20-28

I love how Paul says ‘For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.’ (vs. 25) If there was a line up of people on a stage before the entire world, who would be picked by God to be used for His glorious plans to further His kingdom? The polished, well spoken, ‘looks like they have it all together’ people? No. God chooses those who are cast aside or seen as unimportant. People who often are in the background, over looked. God pushes past the ones who gain the most attention based on the standards of the world. He finds the woman hiding in her fear and insecurity and pulls her out as his chosen one to be used for his kingdom.

For it is in her brokenness and weakness where his glory is revealed. In the shame of her choices where his redemption and love shines. It is in her complete dependence on him alone where his strength and grace are perfectly demonstrated. God lovingly uses the weak, the broken, the flawed, the fearful. There is beauty in that. There is peace in that knowledge.

It’s not about me and what I can do, but Christ’s redemptive work in my life when he died on the cross for my sins.

you give life

I am learning that I need to spend time with the Lord daily, not because I have to but because I need to. I need it like water, like the air I breathe. I can work and labor to change myself into the women I feel looks best before the Lord. I can go to church, I can serve and volunteer, but if I do it all on my own strength…it doesn’t give God glory and it doesn’t draw me closer to him. I need to look at the Bible and my time reading it as a way for me to understand the heart-beat of God. If I only spend time with the Lord to place that elusive check in the box of completion, I miss the exhilaration and expectancy of God’s voice speaking directly to my heart.

(a gift for you- use this image as a screen wallpaper for your phone)

 

Lately I’ve been feeling a bit run down (See my last post Wave After Wave). I’ve been moving a mile a minute from activity to activity, keeping up with the rapid pull of all that I have to do. I’m longing for rest and peace. Usually when I start to feel like I am gasping for breath- that dry feeling deep in my soul- I realize that my time in the Word has been lacking. Oh, I have been spending time in my Bible…but it has become more of another thing to check off of my mental “to-do” list. Another thing that I HAVE to do.

I am a bit slow when it comes to learning new things. I often have to run into the same wall, banging my head over and over again before I realize that I need to change course. When that “Aha!” moment comes…it knocks me off my feet. Today was one of those moments.

In prayer this morning, before I even made a pot of coffee, I poured out my heart before the Lord asking for help to face today. With a deep sigh and an ‘Amen’ I stumbled out of my bed and head first into another schedule-packed day. In the rush of getting all four kids ready for school I was struck by how ragged my patience seemed to be. How quick I was to jump to correct and react rather than come along side and encourage. As I drove away from dropping them off at school, I was humbled by the gentle conviction of the Lord. I have been coasting on fumes. That dry, parched feeling of my heart was due to my lack of approaching the Lord, expectant and ready to be filled.

Hebrews 4:12
For the word of God is living and active.

God’s word is alive with his presence. They aren’t merely words on a page- they give life, they renew, and restore. When I open up his word, I should anticipate breathing in the goodness of God. Taking in the life-giving words of truth that can change and perfect my heart. I need his word. It’s the breath in my lungs. I can’t exist without him.

2 Timothy 3:16
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

I am learning that I need to spend time with the Lord daily, not because I have to but because I need to. I need it like water, like the air I breathe. I can work and labor to change myself into the women I feel looks best before the Lord. I can go to church, I can serve and volunteer, but if I do it all on my own strength…it doesn’t give God glory and it doesn’t draw me closer to him. I need to look at the Bible and my time reading it as a way for me to understand the heart-beat of God. If I only spend time with the Lord to place that elusive check in the box of completion, I miss the exhilaration and expectancy of God’s voice speaking directly to my heart. Oh how much more of the Lord we would know about if we came before him with hands wide open to receive!

We can be tired, weary and emotionally distraught, but after spending time alone with God, we find that He injects into our bodies, energy, power, and strength.

-Charles Stanley

I can’t keep coasting on fumes each day. I need to slow myself down, put aside the “to-do” list and simply immerse myself in the Word. Turning on worship music that focuses on scripture, pulling out my journal and Bible while my toddler watches a movie, or finding a podcast sermon.  I need to sit at the feet of my Father God and have Him restore my soul and realign my heart to his.

 

{great are you Lord – colby howland}

 

coming this spring

Spring 2015 Thryve MagazineI’m so honored to share a bit of what the Lord has been working on in my heart in the Spring Issue of Thryve Magazine. Keep a look out this March for my article titled: repurposed. This sweet magazine has the most tender heart for encouraging women to live their lives as a beautiful offering for the Lord. I cannot urge you enough to stop by their site- you will be blessed and refreshed.

wave after wave…we are not alone

That is the picture I am clinging to right now. A new wave-set is forming in the horizon. I'm feeling tired and unable to push myself up to catch a breath. I know I'm not alone; I don't have to be afraid. My heavenly Father is beside me, lifting me up so I will not be consumed. I'm still scared. I'm still weary, but he is teaching me to be a bit more adventurous in the midst of it because nothing will happen to me that isn't outside of his will or purpose for my life. I'm clinging to him. I'm learning more about trust. I am slowly understanding that he will never leave me or forsake me.

 Psalm 57

{For the director of music. To the tune of “Do Not Destroy.” Of David. When he had fled from Saul into the cave.}

Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed. I cry out to God, who fulfills his purpose for me. He sends from heaven and saves me, rebuking those who hotly purse me; God sends his love and faithfulness. I am in the mist of lions; I lie among ravenous beasts- men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth. They spread a net for my feet- I was bowed down in distress. They dug a pit in my path- but they have fallen into it themselves. My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music. Awake, my soul! Awake! I will awaken the dawn. I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is your love, reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth.


I’m struck by David’s grateful, praise-filled heart in the midst of intense persecution. In the midst of difficulty and fear, David trusted the Lord. He held firm to the promise that God would protect and save him. David unswervingly focused his heart on praising the Lord while his enemies pursued him.

I wish I was more like David.

My life, recently, feels like I am standing in the ocean, right in the place where the waves break. Wave after wave repeatedly hitting my body, feeling like I am about to be toppled over with the next crash. I’m weary, fearful, and I am struggling.

Have you had moments like this?

I can’t tell you that I found some new insight into how God works in the midst of trials. That wouldn’t be truthful. I won’t wrap this up in a “thankful moment of joy” and say that it is so amazing to be in the midst of this trial. I wouldn’t be real.

But I can tell you this with absolute certainty…I know I’m not alone.

I can’t help but remember when I was younger. My family used to camp up at a beach near Santa Barbara. My aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins were there with us. We would spend hours out in the ocean. Wave after wave, jumping over the swells as they passed us by. My favorite thing to do was to wade out a bit further in the deeper water past the shore break. The only time I was brave enough to wander out there was when my grandfather would go with me. I could barely touch the sand with my toes when the waves would come. Seeing the wave crest before me, struggling to lift my body up- I would call for my papa. My grandfather would then lift me up so that the wave wouldn’t crash over my head- often making him go completely underwater as I was in his arms. I felt brave. The bigger the wave, the more exhilarating it was because I knew that my grandfather would not let me go…

That is the picture I am clinging to right now. A new wave-set is forming in the horizon. I’m feeling tired and unable to push myself up to catch a breath. I know I’m not alone; I don’t have to be afraid. My heavenly Father is beside me, lifting me up so I will not be consumed. I’m still scared. I’m still weary, but he is teaching me to be a bit more adventurous in the midst of it because nothing will happen to me that isn’t outside of his will or purpose for my life.

I’m clinging to him.

I’m learning more about trust. I am slowly understanding that he will never leave me or forsake me.

Wave after wave…we are not alone.

{we will not be shaken – bethel music}

bound together in love

Ephesians 4:1-6  "Therefore I, as a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle.  Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body, and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.”

 

Ephesians 4:1-6

“Therefore I, as a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body, and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.”

Oh how this passage convicts and empowers me as a wife. Patience with my husband is such a struggle at times because I am so head strong with my convictions. He is such a deep processor, needing time to soak in and work through his decisions. Such wisdom is found in his handling of tough choices that come up daily in regards to our family.

I need to make every effort to step back and watch how God works through him. Letting him shine, letting his gifts be used in magnificent ways. With humility and gentleness I long to be the wife he needs me to be so that he can then rise up to the the man God created him to be.

I am thankful for this calling in my life.

What a privilege to be bound together in love with this sweet man God brought in my life.