Saturday, August 27, 2011

...the beauty of the cross

I, for some reason, am drawn to music...I love to sing...I love to go for a drive, roll all the windows down, crank up the radio {or whatever is playing} and just sing at the top of my lungs. The other day I had about a 45 minute drive to an appointment and the day was absolutely gorgeous. I was never so excited to go to, of all things, a Dr appt. All because it meant that I would have time to SING in my car ALL BY MYSELF! So, I rolled the windows down, cranked the radio up and started driving...about 15 minutes into it I found myself NOT singing...not because I didn't know the words or the songs...I just wasn't singing. I actually startled myself. Why wasn't I singing? Had the songs become all too familiar? I was puzzled. But, on I drove. About 30 minutes into my drive on a beautiful 2 lane road full of spacious land and hills, a song I had never heard came on the radio...THE BEAUTY OF THE CROSS. I can't remember if it was the catchy tune or the words that first caught my attention but catch my attention it did. I even whipped out a pen and paper {while driving, I might add...not safe, I know} and wrote "the beauty of the cross" down...I didn't want to forget it! The next day at work, I tried to pull up the song on my phone but as great as technology is, it wouldn't play the video....RATS! So, today, I finally had some time to just chill and again, I couldn't get this song out of my head. The words are so powerful...every last one of them!

How can there be beauty in what took place for you and for me on the cross? The whole exchange of LIFE for LIFE...Beauty? In my human mind, I would say, that is anything BUT beautiful.
When I look at it with eyes of eternity...its the most BEAUTIFUL exchange ever!

A King taking my place~Beautiful
a Clean and pardoned soul~Beautiful
access to the Throne of God~SO Beautiful
Freedom~undeservedly Beautiful
JUST AS I AM~words cannot describe how Beautiful

So many lines and words of this song catch my attention BUT the most BEAUTIFUL words of all are that HE CONQUERED SIN AND ROSE FROM THE GRAVE! yes, the Cross and the BLOOD that was shed is more precious and more beautiful than anything in this world...but the REAL BEAUTY is in that He didn't stay on that cross...HE CONQUERED IT...He gave us all a reason to live...He LIVES inside of those who have accepted what He did on that cross...the beauty is that we can KNOW REDEMPTION, we can KNOW FREEDOM, we can KNOW HIM PERSONALLY. If that don't give you something to shout about, I don't really know what will...It makes me sing at the top of my lungs, with my hands raised...all glory to Him...HE FOUND ME JUST AS I AM!

I pray that everyone that reads this would know that this Redemption can be yours, if it is not already...He wants you too to experience the GREAT EXCHANGE...LIFE FOR LIFE {YOURS FOR HIS}. And for those of you who have experienced it...PASS IT ON! It's the only LOVE STORY worth sharing! "that ALL the world would see"...the beauty of the cross of our Savior, Jesus.

{i hope this link posts...if not, look it up on Youtube}

At the cross I find the beauty of Your matchless grace
At the cross I see a King Who died to take my place
It's the moment that You made me clean and pardoned my soul

Amazing Grace that I would be allowed unto Your throne
Not by my own will but solely by Your will alone
I'm unworthy of this love You are showing to me
I see my desperate need

The beauty of the cross is that there's One Who has redeemed my soul
Beauty of the cross is that I'm finally free and letting go
Beauty of the cross is that Your Grace has found me JUST AS I AM

Not by my own works that I may boast or I may come
But simply through Your Son the sinless and exalted One
Only through the cross that I'm made clean and draw near to You
Draw near to You, Draw near to You

Saved so that You would receive ALL GLORY due to Your name
Everlasting God from age to age You never change
A true love story remains for all eternity

The beauty of the cross is that there's One Who has redeemed my soul
Beauty of the cross is that I'm finally free and letting go
Beauty of the cross is that Your Grace has found me JUST AS I AM

My sinful soul could only be
Redeemed by the blood of a sinless King
So You came to the world that You had made
Conquered sin on the cross and You rose from the grave

The beauty of the cross is that there's One Who has redeemed my soul
Beauty of the cross is that I'm finally free and letting go
Beauty of the cross is that Your Grace has found me JUST AS I AM


my heart still sings of this beauty!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Here Am I...I AM HERE

It's been a REALLY LONG TIME since I've blogged...too long. I enjoy blogging, journaling...logging all God shows me, it's kind of like building a memorial, an altar if you will of God's fingerprints in my life. So tonight, it's time...time to log back onto to my trusty blogspot and change a picture or 2 (since it's been so long) and start taking the time to journal what God's showing me.

I've come to the conclusion that we're all waiting for something. We'd be lying if we said we weren't...waiting, waiting, waiting. Waiting for a phone call, a diagnosis, an apology, a first date, a check in the mail, a card from an old friend, a hug, a promise, a spouse, a child, a job, a peace of mind...fill in the blank...we're all waiting...which means we're all in the same boat and we can all empathize with each other. What happens while we wait? Do we wait with frustration? with hope? with anger? with faith? with bitterness? with peace? with joy? Do we wait with jealousy? impatiently? or do we wait with our eyes fixed, arms raised high looking to the ONLY One Who holds the answers, Who has the ability to deliver, Who shows up ALWAYS on time?

I'd be lying if I said my time of waiting is always hopeful, full of faith and belief in the God I so dearly love...I'd be lying if I said I always had a smile on my face with a heart full of joy, completely at rest and content in my circumstances...NO WAY! I throw tantrums at God, I get impatient, I cry, I beg, I get on my knees and say "I just don't get it!"...and today in the quietness(?) of blow-drying a client's hair I found myself getting gut-wrenching honest with God...asking if it was ok for me to just pour it all out, and His answer came very quietly..."go ahead, child, I'm listening". How sweet those words were/are to me. Sometimes I feel guilty for talking to God about my measly little life and circumstances, especially when I KNOW first hand that others have it so much worse (not that I by any means have it bad, but we all have "stuff" we struggle with, right?)'s a lie if I think He doesn't care and doesn't listen to measly little me...I'M HIS CHILD...and no matter how HUGE or how little my circumstances are...HE CARES...HE WANTS me to share...Let's face it...I'm not a parent, but I can't imagine having children and only wanting to listen to the ones who have the HUGE problems...I can only imagine that as a parent, I'd want to know EVERY DETAIL of what my child wants to say to me...finally, FINALLY it clicked for me today that GOD WANTS TO HEAR IT pour it out I did. And ya know what? He listened...He didn't judge me, there was no shame or guilt for pouring my heart out...there was no condemning...He didn't say to me, "really? you're coming to me with that (again)?, there was none of that...there was only complete transparency, love and peace.

So tonight, sitting at a table, sharing a meal with 2 of my dear friends, catching up on each others lives, it hit me again..the 3 of us are all waiting on God to show up BIG in our lives...there's that word again...we're WAITING...(heavy sigh).

We laughed, talked, giggled and cried together around that table, reminiscing about the memories of the past, reliving the God stories of our lives and looked ahead to the future of what God has in store...I know my heart was encouraged.

Before we left each others presence, we did what we always do, we prayed together in the car. For some reason, I just couldn't pray...but as one of the girls started praying I looked down at my hand and my tattoo on my wrist caught my eye. Seriously, I look at that tattoo every single day, I mean, ya can't miss says "Here Am I"...but in light of the day and all my conversations with was as if it was just HIM an I in that car. To me, the tattoo says what my passion is in life...I share it with people all the time when they ask. It's Isaiah 6:8...Here am I Lord, send me. My passion, my calling in life is to go, to serve, to tell others in foreign fields all about Jesus. But tonight the tattoo means so much more because as my friends were praying and I was looking at it, God said to me...."you read it Here Am I...BUT I read it...I AM HERE." Uh wow, I didn't hear another thing that was being prayed...all I could do is sit there in tears and KNOW that NO MATTER WHAT...the GREAT I AM IS HERE. He is with me, at all times, through seasons of joy, times of transition, valleys, name it, He's THERE! I can't look at my wrist in the same way tattoo is precious to me (that maybe weird for some, but it's ok) now it means so much more...not only is it my reminder to be and remain in a place of constant surrender (Here Am I) it will now be a CONSTANT REMINDER of God's presence in my life (I AM HERE).

One last, I get into my car, my heart so full of HIM and the 1st song on the radio (KLOVE) is "Waiting here for YOU" by Christy Nockels...the words couldn't be more fitting for this day:

If faith can move the mountains
Let the mountains move
We come with expectation
Waiting here for you, I’m waiting here for you

You’re the Lord of all creation
And still you know my heart
The Author of Salvation
You’ve loved us from the start

Waiting here for You
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it's You we adore
Singing Alleluia

You are everything You’ve promised
Your faithfulness is true
And we're desperate for Your presence
All we need is You

I LOVE that last line...

So tonight, I CHOOSE to wait with my hands lifted HIGH IN PRAISE of the ONE I adore!