Tuesday, November 30, 2010

a song from this morning's shower

Bring You Glory

If I don't bring You glory,
what am I living for?
If I don't give You praise, all of my days,
who is it I adore?

I will extol the Lord at all times,
My soul will boast in You, O Lord.
Let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
This is the reason I lift up my voice.

If I don't bring You glory, 
what am I living for?
If I don't give You praise, all of my days, 
who is it I adore?

Glorify the Lord with me, 
All you saints, all you saints, 
Let us exalt His name together,
Put praise, put praise on your lips.

If we don't bring You glory,
O Lord, what are we living for?
If we don't give You praise, all of our days,
Who is it we adore?

You alone cans save us,
You alone are our strength.
You alone can redeem and save from the grave.

You alone are good,
You alone are wise.
You alone, You alone are my prize.

You alone are worthy.
You alone give life,
You alone are all my delight.

We bring You glory, O Lord,
It's You we live for.
We bring our praise, now and always,
O King, You, we adore.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Early this week during my time with the Lord, I was struck by the verse Luke 15:31, which says, “My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours." This verse is at the end of the parable of the Prodigal Son. I have read the parable many times, viewing myself as different characters in different times, but this week I just read it. I didn't really identify with the big brother, but the father's words just rang out in my heart. 

"My son," the father said, "you are always with me, and everything I have is yours." 

As I thought about these words, I felt so bad for the big brother and the joy that he was missing out on. The joy of relationship with the father. He has been there the whole time that his brother has been away, but has he been enjoying the father and all that he has? Maybe he didn't realize the great riches of this place, but that does not change the fact that he has been enjoying them on some level and could be enjoying them more. 

I can see the truth of these words in my own life. It is so good to obey your parents and it really does go well with you. It brings such blessing! Primarily, in the relationship and being with your parents, at least in heart. It gives that relationship a strong past, an enjoyable present and a hopeful future. My relationship with my parents is one of the things that I am most thankful for! Being home with my mom and dad this week has been so restful, we laugh, cry, talk quite honestly and enjoy the gift that each of us is in each other's lives. My mom so sweetly said tonight, "the best gifts we have are our children." The relationship far outweighs the "stuff" that my brothers and I will inherit when our parents die, even if they became billionaires.

Now, there have been times in my life when I was tempted to respond like the big brother, and not rejoice at the graciousness of other people to those who are coming home with repentant hearts, but giving into that temptation is meaningless. In light of Christ and His mercy, I too must rejoice at the graciousness of others and give grace and forgiveness myself. There is no place for that attitude, it is pride. After all, I can only walk in holiness as I keep in step with the Spirit. 

On a day like today, Thanksgiving,  we stop to think about our blessings, and to thank the Lord for them. I am truly blessed and really thankful. While I am most definitely blessed in the physical realm by the Lord, I see my greatest blessings are knowing the Father as His child, being with Him always through the Spirit, and having an eternal inheritance from Him in Christ!  

Lord, thank You for Your love, for wanting relationship with us, and sending Your Son to secure it. You are sooooooo good! I just love You!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

the baking frontier

Life is often like baking. Recently, I had the opportunity to make a birthday cake for my friend, Andrew. I had planned to make a simple, yet fun cake, a lightsaber cake to be exact. I had made one before in high school and it was a success. I figured that it could only be easier and turn out better as I had already done it once.

I had bought everything I would need to make the cake and decorate it properly. I had done the math on how to cut the sheet cake right for the proper proportions. I had wrapped a wooden plank in foil, to frost and serve the cake from. I had even dyed a boat load of butter cream frosting bright blue! I was ready to make a lightsaber cake!
Lightsaber blue...frosting!!

However, as the cake cooled at home and I was at campus preparing for an investigative Bible discussion, the birthday boy told me he didn't actually like Star Wars. (Now, I don't just go around assuming that all people like Star Wars, some people are just stubborn and don't like good things, but Andrew was gathering his friends to watch it on his birthday, so I assumed he was a fan.) I knew that I could no longer make a lightsaber cake.

As I got home I was racking my brain to figure out what to make the cake into instead...after carving, baking more, frosting, sprinkling and frosting...and running to Michael's the next day for some miniature Pioneers, I came up with this:
A three year olds dream!

Happy birthday!

Now, how does this relate to life?

Well, I think sometimes our plans say lightsaber cake. We know it will taste good, look good, make people smile and serve to hold candles. But its probably not as fun as making a wild west, canyon cake! Definitely not as unique, and probably not as challenging or as much work. No way, no how! But of course, it is totally worth it!

There is an excitement in the unknown, in the challenges that lie ahead. I pondered all this the morning after my night of cake decorating, when I should have been sleeping. It was still worth it. While I haven't a clue where I will be this time next year, or what I will be doing I am excited for the adventure of it all. The joy is in the journey, when you're journeying with the Lord.

Saddle up!

Note: if the dirt looks purple, it is because I used that blue frosting as my base color.

Monday, November 1, 2010

I just thank You Father for making me, me.

This morning I was sitting outside eating a bowl of cheerios, enjoying the warm sun as a butterfly flew by me. And "The Butterfly Song" popped into my head. Now, this was one of my favorite songs when I was a little kid, and after "growing up" I still love it. The chorus is so simple, but the truth of the words make my heart brim full with joy!

"For You gave me a heart and You gave me a smile,
You gave me Jesus and You made me Your child,
And I just thank You Father for making me, me."

What a sweet thing it is to be God's child, to know this in your heart!