April 29, 2010

God of the impossible...

Have you ever felt like you're drowning in an ocean of complete yuckiness? Do you ever wonder if those nagging burdens will ever leave? Does it ever cross your mind about whether or not our God really can make what seems impossible actually possible? Are you ever in need of a healer? What about a deliverer? Have you ever needed a Savior? Have you ever been so broken that you felt completely un-beautiful? Have you ever been weak and needed strength? What about love, have you ever just needed a hint of it?

Well guess what... all of that yuckiness that we see as an ocean, it's all like a puddle at the feet of our Jesus! Those burdens that you just can't seem to get rid of, our Jesus is standing there with open arms ready to take it all from you! All of that stuff that seems completely impossible, our Jesus can most definitely make it possible, every single bit of it! On those days when you are lost in anything and everything but Jesus and need someone to deliver you, He's right beside you waiting for you to grab hold. Those days when you are broken and need a healer, He's there restoring your heart. On that day when you were lost as a goose, caught in the traps of the enemy, longing for something more, longing for someone to accept you despite your yuckiness, He reached out and saved you! On those days when you are beyond weak, He is your strength that is unlike any other. On those days when you are broken and feel completely un-beautiful, He reaches down deep into your brokenness and makes you beautiful all over again! Those times when all you long for is just a hint of love, He showers you with His unconditional love that is absolutely like no other! Although we may never be able to fully grasp how mighty our God is, it doesn't stop Him from being the incredibly amazing God that He is!

"I have seen what they do,

but I will HEAL them anyway!

I will lead them.

I will COMFORT those who mourn,

bringing words of praise to their lips.

May they have abundant peace, both near and far,

says the Lord, who heals them!"

Isaiah 57:18-19

"The Lord will GUIDE you continually,

giving you water when you are dry

and RESTORING your strength

You will be like a well-watered garden,

like an ever flowing spring."

Isaiah 58:11

"Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere." Ephesians 6:10-18

"He gives POWER to the weak

and STRENGTH to the powerless."

Isaiah 40:29

"O Israel, hope in the Lord;

for with Him there is UNFAILING LOVE.

His redemption OVERFLOWS."

Psalm 130:7

"O Israel, put your hope in the Lord,

now and always!"

Psalm 131:3

"Then Jesus said, Come to me, all who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light." Matthew 11:28-30

"For the Lord, your God is living among you.

He is a MIGHTY Savior.

He will take delight in you with gladness.

With His love, He will calm your fears.

He will rejoice over you with joyful songs."

Zephaniah 3:17

"For NOTHING is impossible with God!"

Luke 1:37

I pray that you would become lost like crazy in the love of our Jesus! I pray that you would continually grab hold of Him and never ever let go! I pray that He would move in and through you in an incredibly amazing way! I pray that you would seek after Him and only Him! I pray that He would make you strong in times of weakness, and that you would be clothed in the armor of God daily! I pray that you would daily long for more and more of Him! I pray that you would not be silent, but that you would SHOUT forth His praise! I pray that you would be a willing vessel for the Kingdom of Christ! I pray that you would no longer fight against this world, but that your chains would be broken in Jesus' name! I pray that you would daily see yourself as the beautiful person that you are! I pray that you would no longer see things as impossible, but rather possible through the eyes of our God! I pray that you would be used to shake this nation! I pray that you would daily become lost all over again in the eyes of our Maker! I pray that your heart would dance harder than ever before our Daddy today!


April 21, 2010

POWER... enough said!

I kinda got lost in the book of Psalms this morning... hopefully this will all make sense.....

"The Lord merely spoke,

and the heavens were created.

He breathed the word,

and all the stars were born.

He assigned the sea its boundaries,

and locked the oceans in vast reservoirs.

Let the whole world fear the Lord,

and let everyone stand in awe of Him.

For when He spoke, the world began!

It appeared at his command."

Psalm 33:6-9

As soon as I read this particular section all I could think about was power, and just how powerful our King is. When we think of power we think of money, control, and every other thing that society wants us to think. We as individuals want to be the ones with all of the power and control. Although we may not be able to completely comprehend and understand it, our God is more powerful than any human being will ever be. In these verses it says that He just simply spoke and BAM, it was created. He didn't have to go to the nearest factory to create the heavens, or go to the nearest shop for stars. No, He just spoke and BAM they appeared, and not just that... they appeared exactly where He wanted them. If that doesn't scream POWER then I don't know what does. Let's delve into this a little more...

You know those days when you fall face first flat into sin? Those days when Satan just has a complete 'field-day' with you? Those days when you feel like you just might be squished into the ground, simply due to the weight of the junk you daily carry? Those days when you feel like God doesn't want anything to do with you because you fell into sin again? Those days when you, yet again fall into sin, and you know that for sure this time God won't forgive you? Those days that the enemy has you so distracted and so confused that you absolutely cannot seem to find Jesus anywhere? Those days when your prayers seem to be hitting the ceiling, and going no where else but there? Those days when you are scared like crazy, and feel all alone with no one to protect you? Those days when your sin seems way bigger than God and His forgiveness? Those days that are just plain ughh? Well guess what..... our God is so much more BIGGER than all of that!! There is absolutely NO obstacle whatsoever that is bigger than our Jesus... yep, it's the absolute truth!! For that sin that seems too big, He offers COMPLETE forgiveness! For those prayers that seem to hit the ceiling, He hears them! For those days when you are scared, He's there surrounding you! For those days when Satan is having a 'field-day', He's right there for you to cling too! For those days when Satan has you confused and distracted like crazy, He offers clarity and understanding! In thinking about all of this my heart travels to a few different verses...

"He forgives ALL of my sins..."

Psalm 103:3

"He has removed ALL of our sins as far from us

as the east is from the west."

Psalm 103:12

"The Lord has HEARD my plea;

the Lord WILL answer my prayer."

Psalm 6:9

"The Lord is my light and my salvation,

so why should I be afraid?

The Lord is my fortress, PROTECTING me from danger, so why should I tremble?"

Psalm 27:1

"Let all that I am wait quietly before God,

for my HOPE is in Him.

He alone is my rock and my salvation,

my fortress where I will NOT be shaken.

My victory and honor come from God alone.

He is my refuge, a rock where NO enemy can reach me.

O my people, trust Him at all times.

Pour out your heart to Him,

for God is our refuge."

Psalm 62:5-8

"I lie awake thinking of You,

meditating on You through the night.

Because You are my HELPER,

I sing for joy in the shadow of Your wings.

I cling to You,

Your strong right hand HOLDS me SECURELY."

Psalm 63:6-8

"For You are my hiding place;

You PROTECT me from trouble;

You SURROUND me with songs of victory."

Psalm 32:7

Each of these verses focus on a different aspect of our King, but they all shout about His power, whether we realize it or not! Regardless of whether Satan's chasing us around like crazy, or we fall face first into sin, our God is still so much more POWERFUL than whatever it is! Our God is anything and everything we will ever need, and in each of those His mighty power shines through in an amazing way! Just to sit back and think about the power of our King is breathtaking. It's something that you and I will never be able to fully grab hold of. His power is something that we should never cease to talk about... not only should praise continually come forth from our lips, but we should also proclaim His power and might!

"Sing a new song of praise to Him;

play skillfully on the harp, and sing with joy.

For the word of the Lord holds true,

and we can trust everything that He does."

Psalm 33:3-4

"Then I will rejoice in the Lord.

I will be glad because He rescues me.

With every bone in my body I will praise Him..."

Psalm 35:9-10

"My heart is confident in you, O God;

my heart is confident.

No wonder I can sing Your praises!"

Psalm 57:7

"But as for me, I will sing about Your power.

Each morning I will sing with joy about Your unfailing love. For You have been my refuge,

a place of safety in distress."

Psalm 59:16

"I will praise you as long as I live,

lifting up my hands to You in prayer.

You satisfy me more than the richest feast.

I will praise You with songs of joy!"

Psalm 62:4-5

I pray that His power and might would become like a tumultuous ocean within your soul and like a blazing fire within your bones. I pray that you would no longer be able to keep His love to yourself, but that you would crave to share it with those all around! I pray that you would have a longing in your heart to daily proclaim His saving power and might! I pray that praise would continually come forth from your lips! I pray that you would daily begin to see our God and His power in a whole new and amazing way! I pray that you would no longer be bound by the junk of this world, but that you would become deeply lost in the gaze and love of King Jesus! I pray that your heart would daily dance before King Jesus as He continually sings over you!


April 20, 2010

I have to SHOUT!!

I long to daily share the love and power of my Jesus with those all around. Just as Psalm 71 says... I may not be skilled with words, yet I long to proclaim His saving power! God is beyond evident and He's continually moving like crazy, and I can no longer hold it all in... my heart absolutely has to SHOUT His praise and declare His glory!

My Jesus is always moving and speaking, but the past month has been crazy amazing! Just in the past 4 weeks I have seen God move and heard Him speak clearer than ever. Every time a question has been raised He has immediately answered, and He continually speaks confirmation through His Word. My fam and I aren't really ones to jump up and down at the thought of moving, especially when we've been in Gordo forever. When Dad built the house that we're in now, it was supposed to be the 'last' house, not one that we would end up selling after 8 years. Never in a million years did my fam and I think we would move to inner-city Birmingham. Never ever did it cross our minds that we would be part of the core group, planting a church in inner-city Birmingham. Although we never would've imagined it all to look like this, we've each had a longing that God was calling our family to something more, and it just so happens that it's planting a church and becoming missionaries to inner-city Birmingham... who would’ve known?!

But not just so we can plant a 'church'... we want to be a racially, ethnically, and socially diverse church where people can come together and worship our King. Not just that, we want to extend it beyond 4 walls... we want to be a body that extends out to the lost and broken world that sits in our backyard. We want to go into the lands where no one else will. We want to minister to the broken and poor, to the lost and confused... regardless of whether they shower everyday or haven't showered in months...regardless of whether they live in a multi-million dollar home or in a small make-shift cardboard box...regardless of whether they can afford to wear Dolce&Gabbana and Armani or just a simple shirt and pants that they happened to find in the trash can nearby...regardless of whether they are black, white, purple, green, brown, red, and every other color in the 64 count crayon box...we just simply want to shower them with the amazing love of our Jesus and share His saving power. We want to raise up what the world sees as hopeless and dying into a God-fearing generation.

To most it seems crazy and on the verge of complete insanity, but to our family and the others involved it's beyond amazing. The opportunities are endless... feeding 10,000+ people a week, showing girls and boys what it’s like to have a mother and a father, going into homes teaching them what it’s like to be a family, giving immunization shots, giving out immigration cards, opening up our home to the homeless, teaching English classes, taking in babies of teenage moms and caring for them, and tons more! It’s not just the fact that the opportunities are endless, but that our hearts desires and our dreams as a family and as individuals will be able to be fulfilled! God has called our family to go and to share His love with those considered ‘untouchable’, and we couldn’t be happier! For a family that never would’ve considered moving, we absolutely cannot wait to move!

As each day passes, my Jesus continues to show me new things and continues to confirm. Yes, moving means that we have to leave some things behind, but what we are entering into is beyond amazing. There is absolutely nothing better than being smack dab in the middle of His will! Yes, some days will be harder than others, but we know that our Jesus is with us every single step of the way! So once again, just as Psalm 71 says, though my fam and I aren’t skilled with words, we are clinging to our Jesus and running into inner-city Birmingham to proclaim His saving power and to share His mighty love! My fam and I covet your prayers as we continue in this journey.