Tuesday, March 30, 2010

passion week: tuesday...

jesus said to them, “have you never read in the Scriptures:
“‘the stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
this was the lord's doing,
and it is marvelous in our eyes’?
 therefore i tell you, the kingdom of god will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits. and the one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” when the chief priests and the pharisees heard his parables, they perceived that he was speaking about them. and although they were seeking to arrest him, they feared the crowds, because they held him to be a prophet." 
- matthew 21:42-46
“o jerusalem, jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! how often would i have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! see, your house is left to you desolate. for i tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, 'blessed is he who comes in the name of the lord.’”
 - matthew 23:37-39

then satan entered into judas called iscariot, who was of the number of the twelve. he went away and conferred with the chief priests and officers how he might betray him to them. and they were glad, and agreed to give him money. so he consented and sought an opportunity to betray him to them in the absence of a crowd.
- luke 22:3-6

Monday, March 29, 2010

healing is in your hands...

this song by christy nockels is off the latest passion album, awakening. it has been on repeat for the past several days.   i love it!  it has been a sweet reminder for me of the lord's love. something i need a reminder of often.

healing is in your hands
by christy nockels
No mountain, no valley, no gain or loss we know
could keep us from Your love
No sickness, no secret, no chain is strong enough
to keep us from Your love
to keep us from Your love

How high, how wide
No matter where I am, healing is in Your hands
How deep, How strong,
And now by Your grace I stand, healing is in Your hands

Our present, our future, our past is in Your hands
We're covered by Your blood
We're covered by Your blood

How high, How wide
no matter where I am, healing is in Your hands
How deep, How strong
And now by Your grace I stand, healing is in Your hands 

passion week: monday...

"and they came to jerusalem. and he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold and those who bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of  the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple.  and he was teaching them and saying to them, “is it not written, ‘my house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? but you have made it a den of robbers.”  and the chief priests and the scribes heard it and were seeking a way to destroy him, for they feared him, because all the crowd was astonished at his teaching." - mark 11:15-18
 "and jesus answered them, 'the hour has come for the son of man to be glorified. truly, truly, i say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. if anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where i am, there will my servant be also. if anyone serves me, the father will honor him.'" - john 12:23-26

Sunday, March 28, 2010

passion week: sunday...

rejoice greatly, o daughter of zion!
shout aloud, o daughter of jerusalem!
behold, your king is coming to you;
righteous and having salvation is he,
humble and mounted on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
 - zechariah 9:9

and they brought the colt to jesus and threw their cloaks on it, and he sat on it. and many spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields. and those who went before and those who followed were shouting, “hosanna! blessed is he who comes in the name of the lord! blessed is the coming kingdom of our father david! hosanna in the highest!” and he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple. 
- mark 11:7-11

Friday, March 26, 2010

waking up...

i am late in the game in buying this album, but do not let my tardiness deter you from buying it. i loved onerepublic's previous album so much i was a little skeptical that i would love their second album as much. and the truth is, i like it better!  great music, great beats and even some soul searching lyrics.  i have a few of the songs in my songlist above if you want to give them a listen.

a few of my favorites (though i recommend the whole album) are:
all the moves
good life
everybody loves me

buy it and enjoy!

downtown church...

i bought this album a month or so ago and it still has not gotten old! i love it! patty is by far one of my favorite musicians and i was wondering if this gospel genre would still let patty be patty.  and it does! buy this album, it is so good.  i cannot speak to patty's spiritual beliefs, but i can speak the beauty of this music.

have i mentioned that patty lives here in austin?  not too far from my house. maybe someday we will be friends.

obu men's basketball takes NAIA title...

so i am just going to take a minute to brag about my alma mater, oklahoma baptist university (see you are already thinking, i have never heard of this school) so i must take minute to share this because there are not many opportunities for this small school to make the news.  this past week, obu's men's basketball team won the NAIA title (see i told you it is a small school). i was so excited! wished i could have been there to watch.  we even made it on ESPN.  here are some highlights:

oklahoma baptist rallies for NAIA title

Sunday, March 21, 2010

a visit to okc...

two weeks ago i took a short trip to oklahoma city and stayed with my friend staci.  it had been over a year and half since i had been back to the great state of oklahoma.  i got lots of quality time with staci, whitney, casey and mindy.  i also got to see dara and baby eli in the hospital!! what perfect timing.  one night i got a bunch of friends together for dinner at the wedge down in deep deuce and then ended the night at cuppies and joe [a cupcake and coffee place that my friends the def twins own].  i was too busy having fun to take pictures, but i did manage to take two.
eatin' at the wedge.

 obu reunion at cuppies and joe.

i think there is another pic of me, min, and dara in the hospital with eli floating around out there somewhere.  it was a great trip with great laughs and good talks!  i think my abs hurt from laughing so much.i  was sad that i did not get to see carrie and natalie while i was there. next time ladies!

just ask me...

the other day in my time with the lord, i read in 1 samuel 1-2 about hannah praying for samuel.  as i read the story this time, hannah's weeping really stuck out to me.  she was grieving that fact that she did not have a child so much so that she when she was crying, the priest eli, thought she was drunk!  i mean that is some seriously weeping and praying.  as i read this, my proud, self-righteous heart, thought exactly this, "what a weak woman.  just trust that god is going to provide and know that if he does not, it is for the best. just get over it." then it kind of made me irritated that she got what she asked for. 

then the lord piped in. i felt him ask me, "why does this bother so much?"  
me: "because, she needs to just trust you and not throw her life away crying."
god: "yes, she does need to trust me. but maybe i put that desire on her heart to ask. maybe i had a plan to receive glory."
me: "okay. ya i guess you are right."
god: "i don't think that is the real issue here."
me: "huh, what?"
god: "why don't you ask me for what you really want?"
me: "what?!?! [panic setting in] i do. i pray and ask for help and i pray that you would move and change people's lives, and... [interrupted]"
god: "that is not what i am talking about. why don't you ask me for those things you want?"
me: "what things? [knowing exactly what he was talking about]"
god: "you know."
me: "oh, those things.  well you see, uh, i mean they are not a big deal. there are more important things to be praying for. and i do not want those to be a distraction."
god: "quit being a martyr and trying to be holy and just ask me. besides, remember i delight in giving good things to my children and what if i have laid those desires on your heart so that you will know me as your provider. just like hannah got to know me as" [read 1 samuel 2]
me: "okay. i will try."
god: "okay go ahead, write them down in your journal."
me: "what?!?! no, then i will have a record of them and what if they are foolish?"
god: "so what? i already know. quit trying to make even your journal look well put together and just ask me already."

so after about ten minutes of staring at my journal with my pen in my hand, i began to just ask him. ask him for things big and small. pleading with him for things i wanted, knowing that he may or may not give them to me, but he is good regardless.  realizing that i am hindering my ability to know him as provider and giver of good things if i do not ask. 

i am going to be honest, i felt silly at times and still do asking, but i also felt a new childlike freedom i had not felt before.  it was sweet.
And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?  If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”  Luke 11:9-13
really all of  luke 11 has been good for me to meditate on.  so has luke 18:1-8, the story of the persistent widow.  so why don't i ask him?  
  • i am too prideful to ask for help, for gifts, etc.  asking is weak in my mind, so i am not going to ask and i am just going to accept my lot.  well this is just foolish.  i really stink at being dependent. 
  • i fear he will say no and i will look like a fool or i will have wasted time.  i worry too much about whether i am asking for the right thing of not.  this shows that i still fear disappointing the lord. a fear that only the gospel can heal. i don't believe that asking can actually teach me more about him and his character.  
so, i am beginning a season of asking for what i want.  we will see what happens, but i can tell you, i already feel closer to my heavenly father.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

forgotten god...

i recently finished listening and relistening to francis chan's book, forgotten god, on itunes audiobook. it is SOOO good. i am not great at writing these book reviews, but i highly recommend this book.  chan talks about the holy spirit residing in us.  our lives should look different.  god living in us!  we have THE HELPER, yet most of us do not live lives that need help so we never have to rely on him.  or we live lives that are anxiety and control ridden because we have forgotten that god lives in us.  he gives us the words to say, he provides, he teaches, he leads, he guides, he protects, he strengthens, etc etc. and most of us (me being at the very top of this list) rarely call on him.  only when the breakdown comes to we seek his help.  i am all too guilty of this.  that is why i continue to relisten to segments of this book.  i found myself asking the question, "why does my life look just like all the other moral and religious people out there? if i have god living in me, why doesn't my life look different?"

so this book has pushed me to try this out.  try trusting him in the moment. asking for help from him in the moment. i have had some victories and i have still given into my old habits, but i tell you what, those small victories have made me fall in love with and trust my savior more.  i long to live by faith, but i clearly live by strength and strategy.  faith trusts on the lord's strength and strategy, something my heart cannot seem to let go if. this book has also shown me how feeble my prayer life is, how little i commune with him and ask for help.  how often i think i can do eternal work with out the help of the eternal One.  and then i cave under the stress and pressure because i do not ask the Helper. i am fumbling around with this.

so anyway, i am sure many of you trust the lord more than i do, but this book has been so good for me! the audiobook is actually read by chan and is really easy to listen to.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

[valley of vision] the personal touch...

the personal touch
from valley of vision

thou great I AM,
i acknowledge and confess that all things
come of thee -
life, breath, happiness, advancement,
sight, touch, hearing,
goodness, truth, beauty -
all that makes existence amiable.
in the spiritual world also i am dependent
  entirely upon thee.
give me grace to know more of my need of grace;
show me my sinfulness that i may wilingly
  confess it;
reveal to me my weakness that i may know
  my strength in thee.
i thank thee for any sign of penitence;
  give me more of it;
my sins are black and deep,
  and rise from a stony, proud, self-righteous heart;
help me to confess them with mourning, regret,
  with no pretence to merit or excuse;
i need healing,
good physician, here is scope for thee,
  come and manifest thy power;
i need faith;
thou who hast given it me, maintain, strengthen, increase it,
centre it upon the saviour's work,
  upon the majesty of the father,
  upon the operations of the spirit;
work it in my now that i may never doubt thee
  as the truthful, mighty, faithful God.
then i can bring my heart to thee
  full of love, gratitude, hope, joy.
may i lay at they feet these fruits grown
  in thy garden,
  love thee with a passion that can never cool,
  believe in thee with a confidence that never
  hope in thee with an expectation that can never
    be dim,
  delight in thee with a rejoicing that can never
    be stifled,
  glorify thee with the highest of my powers,
    burning, blazing, glowing, radiating, as from
    thy own glory.