Well Worship

It has been sooooo hot the past few weeks and I am gearing up for a lot. after a bout with discouragement I decided to break the silence with a challenge.

The Challenge

Some of us love the idea of a challenge. One that we could wrap our hearts around, it is different for everyone. Our gears start turning. Rusty bolts get oiled and chains re-lubed. We pull out the old machine and buy some new gear. Start telling everyone about it. We study and get ready to run out there full steam.

Nothing can stop you at this point, and even if they tried you would welcome the scrapes and bruises. You wield the challenge like a shiny new toy. Never let it out of your sight or your mind. It is all you think about. You ponder how you can get a step ahead, and dream about the…

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Psalmism

I came across a really cool idea today. On Pastor Chilly’s blog… Check it out here

Pastor Chilly challenged his entire church to write their own Psalm and share it. As I read his, it got me excited (He tends to do that) What a cool idea. I immediately started thinking… What would mine say? So I came home and started writing!

Here it is…

Even from birth You chose me, it was for Your glory

I didn’t know it, I didnt care.

I was carefree, that is how You made me.

I know You fashioned me with the same hands that You made everything I see.

Unique just like every snowflake, and every grain of sand.

It is all so incredible, I can only imagine that is what You think of me too.

 

All of creation proclaims who You are, so why shouldn’t I?

Just my heart beating all on it’s own is evidence of You.

My lungs inhaling Oxygen and sustaining life is praise all in itself,

so why shouldn’t my lips do the same?

You gave me understanding so I could speak.

My brain telling my lips to move and

my vocal chords to vibrate creating sound from nothing is by your design!

Why shouldn’t my voice praise You too?

 

Only you create life from nothing and breathe creation.

So my lips should continually speak of Your magnificence

That I could feel You as near as I know You are.

 

How could I repay? I can’t! so I try to hold You high

You looked inside and still love my soul.

Now I am captured, Even when I fall I am caught by You,

Even when I choose darkness you love me enough to show me the way back,

You made a way out

So I chose it.

I chose your way over mine…

Then I chose my way over Yours

Your ways are better.. Not because I heard it was so…

but You let me do it my way so I could SEE how glorious You are

so I continue to choose You.

Battlefield normalcy

I always say it… It’s the little things that matter.

There we were standing, ready, prepared to take on the world. I had my toolbag in hand, some call it a diaper bag, others call it necessary tools for success. Nothing could stop us. It was us against the world, and the world was about to lose. We knew our goal. We knew the outcome before we started. We would succeed, we had to succeed! There was no turning back now and only cowards knew the way anyway. We trudged forward… Determined! I started up the engine. With a few quick short bursts it ferociously roared to life. The gentle purr of the engine a precursor to the explosiveness that lay dormant, ready to take flight if need be…

So I gently revved the engine of the little white mini van as I made up some random song to sing my baby son. (he enjoyed it)

That’s right, there was no speech, no last words that inspire thousands to die on the battlefield of nobility. There was no loud cheers to spur a dead sprint to face the enemy and possibly eternity. It was just Saturday morning. It was a normal day. It was me and my son. We would spend the day together. A day that we would most likely soon forget. Jumbled together with the hundreds of other days just like it. What makes this day so special you ask? Ah hah now I knew I had you at hello! The truth is there may not be anything that makes it note-able. But… Special… it is (a little Yoda-esque no?) I have time with my son, time I would never get back if I missed. Time I would always regret if I didn’t take advantage of it. So take advantage… I did (Yoda laugh)

You see time is something we can’t get enough of and always need more of. I spent the day, laughing, singing, feeding, playing, smiling, and loving my son. All of those things are so little, All of those things aren’t the things that we sit down and plan out. They just happen throughout the course of a day. Couple them with thousands more just like them and we have something that is memorable… Something that is to be cherished.

That is a life that is spent on what really matters. I look at my son daily and thank God for such an awesome person to share my life with. He has forever changed the way I look at the world. For as long as I can I hope to have as many uneventful days like I did this Saturday. Ones where we are just living life together and laughing a lot in the process. That’s my prayer today. That I don’t take the little things for granted.

And I beg you my friend… don’t you either!

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Poems

I was looking back in this blog and my (myspace) blog (yea I signed in and it was still there! shocking right?) at the things I wrote about Rach who I lost 5 years ago this night… I found these poems

April 24th, 2008Poem

inspired by life

I’ve sung Songs about believing
It’s so easy when I see the truths that I’ve been reading
You pulled out sorrow from where the root was so strong
And taught me, in your everlasting peace, I belong
You’ve placed joy in a broken and wounded heart
And showed me that God, you and I are never truly far apart

Now here I have a new start
A beginning set in motion by an all sufficient spark
the truths that youll,
never leave me,
never forsake me,
never forget me, are evident all around,
How you placed joy unmeasureable, in my soul no longer bound

now filled with a love so incredibly complete,
And with this overwhelming sense of knowing
you’ve filled my every need!

 

Oct 5, 2007Poem

So I am so busy lately I barely have time to think,
But the sweet thought of your carress still makes makes my heart sink,
and my eyes they still blink,
each unelloquent moment covered in the veil of uneventful rememberings, so vivid in detail as such beautiful ordain renderings,
but not only sadness to the soul it now brings,
but essential to the spirit to maintain a fondness of the incomplete,
That which was once an impassable feat,
Now feeling it acceptable to appreciate the simple and the small,
for as to the remembrance of that I most recall,
and if even in the leaves begin to turn,
in earnest deliverance my thoughts now burn,
It was only a fraction of a second as I blinked
and In that solemn moment my haert did sink,
But considered it a blessing just to think,
How beatiful You were when You were here
and How lucky I was to Hold you near!,

March 25, 2008Poem

Flooded inside

 

 Questions that have been pushed dormant, not a single solitary torment, I feel at peace to know you have arrived, where I one day too will reside,If you could see me now, I think you might, have joy to know I am alright, I can feel a change I thought would never come, If only I had hid it until now, somehow I am overcome, This flooding is so unexpected and perhaps just a start of new perception, I think it was easier where I was, But time never stands still and neither can I, In life, in death, in hearts and in step, Theres always something new when you dare to move on.

 

 

 

 

a Post about Nothing

For the first time in I can’t remember i looked at my calendar this week and there it was staring staring me in the face, taunting me even! It was… nothing.

My week was free (for the most part). No appointments, no song preps, no plans. Ahhhh, how will I survive!!!

My first thought was, “What am I going to do?” i know… crazy, right! Life is crazy and it only gets crazier. Why do we always feel that we have to fill all our free time with something. We can be frantic (as I was) to fill it with anything.

I am not a lazy person but I do enjoy the occasional free day,uhh… I think! Its refreshing. But only if we let it be.

I came home from work Monday night after deciding to embrace the day, Carpe Diem! I had all night and I was going to give it to my son and wife. There I sat periodically wondering where my phone was and then remembering, oh yeah I put it away. In my brief down moments my mind immediately began racing trying to figure out something to do! You have been there right? (tell me I am not alone) It didn’t feel right not having my phone, not running from place to place , and actually having room to breathe. I have to tell you, a conversation is so much easier understood when there is no phone in your face! Can I get an Amen!

Maybe it is the thrill of the chase I enjoy. Maybe it is the feeling of accomplishment I get when I know I did it! Whatever IT may be.

So now here I found myself sitting on the bench. But… But… Who is in the game? Won’t the world stop spinning if I take a day off?

No… It won’t, and the truth of the matter is your checklist will never be done, there will always be something else to do.

As I sat there that night playing with my son I soon forgot about my phone, and all the things I needed to get done. I no longer felt compelled to do something with my day. I gave him all of me and I don’t regret a single second. As I layed him in bed last night, I wished the day was longer and we had more time!

I think of all that I would have missed if I chose to give in and waste my night by choosing lists over my son.

 I know that years from now when my son is older I won’t remember another busy night. I know I will always remember when we played so long and laughed so hard until he sat in my lap hugged me and began to fall asleep. THAT… I WILL NEVER forget!

Today, embrace your free time. It is precious, it is an endangered commodity in this life. It shouldn’t be taken for granted or wasted with minuscule details. Fight the urge to fill up every moment with something and enjoy the nothing. And if you don’t have any free time, then its time to make some,  and if you are a list person, then put it on your list and take pleasure on crossing it off.

Remember your purpose!

Cultivate

It is that time of the year again. The plants are growing the trees are budding and it is warm outside! My grass already needs mowed, (Oh yeah I should charge my lawnmower). Sometimes we are lucky and plants just grow. There isn’t much you have to do to make grass grow(and weeds for that matter).

Its like that in worship too. We all have the area that comes naturally. For some it is singing, expressing praise, others it is serving, for some its compassion, some of us have a large capacity to love, and are accepting of others. Whatever it is that comes naturally to you, appreciate it and work at it even more. Because unfortunately we all have the weeds that come up naturally too. Nobody likes a weed! Sometimes we pretend that they are pretty, just to trick our minds into thinking we actually wanted it in the first place! You can call ugly whatever you want, at the end of the day its still ugly.

You know what weeds I am talking about… Selfishness, entitlement, pride, stinginess, idolatry… to name a few

All of that ugliness doesn’t honor God. When we start to see these weeds growing in our lives we have to start doing some work. The sad reality is that it is such a gradual process. Most times we don’t see it at first. We let it in a little and just like weeds in a garden or grass, in no time at all it has taken over what was once beautiful. Only the weeds are seen. Our ugliness outshines our worship. Our actions don’t honor God and His beauty can’t be seen through the mess.

Anyone that has ever had to get rid of weeds knows that it is difficult. Its hard work and labor intensive.

Perhaps you are a weeded up mess. Start over.Like an empty field. Take it and start to cultivate a lifestyle of worship.

Where there is negativity, pull it up and start to nurture positive thoughts.

Where there is anger, or unforgiveness. Lay it at the feet of Jesus and start with Forgiveness and accept his peace.

Where there is disrespect, choose to honor as Christ would.

Where there is un-love, make a choice to love, even the unloveable!

I am not saying this is easy. It isn’t easy to pull weeds and plant good crops and see it through. But the harvest is worth the reward. The work pays off in the end. If you are in the middle of your journey, think about the end… remember today why you ever even started! Remind yourself why you do what you do.

Start to cultivate a life that honors God… in spirit and in truth, In work and in deeds, in words and actions!

To truly worship him we have to move past the music, beyond the performance and let our hearts be renewed by him. Transformed from who we are and transplant HIS ways into our life!

Do not be conformed to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God – what is good and well-pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2 NET)

Re-Lent

I can honestly say that I have heard about Lent for many years and always dismissed it, even ridiculed it(often) as a religious duty. One with no real Heart or meaning behind it. It was a calendar based event that “in my opinion” meant nothing.

Flickr Photo by rwangsa

This year I have started reading through the bible and find it interesting that God placed so much emphasis on doing things in remembrance. He gave the Israelites songs to sing so that they, and their future generations could remember.

What I find even more interesting is He places things as a reminder to Himself.

Gen 9:14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds,15 then I will remember my covenant with you and with all living creatures of all kinds. Never again will the waters become a flood and destroyt all living things.

To me, when I see that God even has a reminder it doesn’t make me feel so bad for having them.

Glenn Packiam wrote an awesome article about lent on his blog, you can read it here He wrote this which really makes a lot of sense.

“One of the benefits of celebrating Lent is that you’ll be fasting along with millions of Christians all around the world at the same time! We talk all the time about wanting the Church to be in unity, but then dismiss traditions as empty ritual. But what if these sacred traditions can be a way for us to walk in unity together?”-Glenn Packiam

I think it is cool to think that I could participate with christians all around the world in remembering Christ. In the post he goes on to explain how the Christian Calendar was made to point us and remind us of the love of Christ.

Before Jesus began his ministry He fasted for forty days and in participating in Lent and fasting for a time, it is a way of connecting with Him and also remembering all that He did for us when he came on this earth.

I am excited to begin tomorrow on Ash Wednesday, a 40 day journey of growing closer to him and remembering daily his sacrifice for me and you.

As Glenn points out in his blog Lent is also about giving to the poor. Allie and I are participating in 40 days of water you can find out about this awesome project here giving up all our drinks and doing only water.

Maybe You would like to join us and Christians all around the world during this time, I say do it! Anything to bring you closer to God is great!

Col3:17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.