Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Resolution Songs // Month 5

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This month started out kinda hard. What with the news of the loss of a sweet baby boy and with Mother's Day coming up, I just didn't feel like choosing a song this month. Too much sadness around and inside, too much pain, too many questions and doubts and angry shouts to the sky. 

But then I realized, that's exactly the reason why I decided to do this thing, this resolution song thing. The very purpose of my commitment to this was to choose faith, choose joy, choose encouragement, choose to not wallow. And tonight on my drive home from work, I sang along to this song with all my heart. In the midst of confusion, of pain, of grief, of hopelessness, of questions and doubts, I sang. I sang for Jacqui and Dan, I sang for dear friends who have also lost little ones, I sang for my sick friends, I sang for my hopeful friends, I sang for my questioning friends and my lost friends. I sang out in my own brokenness, I sang this truth out to Jesus, because it was all that I could say.


"I need You more than anything." 


What can compare
To the love of Jesus
Who can repair
Every broken thing
No other One
Can break this darkness
No other name
No other name

I need You
More than anything
Jesus I need You
More than anything

Through the calm and the storm
In the chaos
Though the mountains will crumble
You will not
Never failing Your promise eternal 
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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

When the dream dies

The dream. Go to college. Write a novel. Get married. Travel the world. Own a home. Find a career. Be a rockstar. Save your marriage. Have a baby. Homeschool your kids. Reconcile with your family. Retire. 

Dreams come in all shapes, sizes, and flavors, and we all have different tastes. I love hearing people's stories and dreams, hopes for the future, and starry-eyed plans. But what happens when your dreams don't seem to come true? Granted, we dream until we die, and I believe that it's never too late to see a dream achieved. However, what of the athlete who gets into a car accident and can never play ball again? What of the 39-year-old single friend? What of the betrayed and abandoned lover? What of the barren wife? 

What happens when our dreams seem shattered and altogether unachievable? What do we do when there is no plan B? How do we keep calm and carry on in the face of hopelessness? 

Honestly, I don't know. 

Scripture has a lot to say about hopelessness, and I take comfort in God's Word and in the knowledge that He is faithful and the most understanding of our trials. 

Philippians 4:6-7 

 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Matthew 11:28-30 
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” 
James 5:13 
Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 

And yet, practically speaking, what do we do when the first dream "dies"? I know that "give up" is the wrong answer here. So, do we pursue a new dream? Do we relentlessly continue to pursue the first dream? Prayer, community, and studying the Scriptures are musts for me. But what else? How then should we live?

Again, I'm not entirely sure. 

One thing I do know, though. It's a phrase that I've held onto for the last handful of years, one that my husband and I repeat to each other as encouraging reminders: 

"One faithful moment at a time." 

That's all that we're sure of. This moment in time. Jesus could return or take us home at any time. We have now. Let's be as faithful as we can be with it. 

It's definitely not a satisfying answer to all of the hopelessnesses of life. But, it's one that I cling to.


Want to take home your own copy of my One Faithful Moment art print? Enter below to win your own free art print.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. 

Here's to many faithful moments to come.



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Friday, April 4, 2014

Resolution Songs // Month 4


Choose Joy. This month, I want joy. I choose joy, in spite of hardship and depression,  in spite of selfishness and setbacks, in spite of doubt and fear. I CHOOSE JOY. I want it. 

The pain will not define us
Joy will re-ignite us
You're the song
You're the song
Of our hearts

Jesus Christ is the only way to true joy. What an amazing thing that He provides! On top of salvation (which is MORE THAN ENOUGH), He wants to fill us with joy (Romans 15:13). For this month, April 2014, I choose to take part in that plan. I choose joy. Thank you, Jesus, that YOU make JOY available to us!

This song, "Joy", is from The Rend Collective's newest album The Art of Celebration. It is fantastic and I highly recommend it. Deep and powerful lyrics of praise accompanied by intricate and bright, celebratory tunes. There's no better song that encompasses my commitment to choosing joy this month.



"Joy"
We're choosing celebration
Breaking into freedom
You're the song
You're the song
Of our hearts

We cast aside our shadows
Trust You with our sorrows
You're the song
You're the song
Of our hearts

We're dancing to the rhythm of Your heart
We're rising from the ashes to the stars

You're the joy joy joy lighting my soul
The joy joy joy making me whole
Though I'm broken, I am running
Into Your arms of love

The pain will not define us
Joy will re-ignite us
You're the song
You're the song
Of our hearts

The dark is just a canvas
For Your grace and brightness
You're the song
You're the song
Of our hearts

We're dancing to the rhythm of Your heart
We're rising from the ashes to the stars

You're the joy joy joy lighting my soul
The joy joy joy making me whole
Though I'm broken, I am running
Into Your arms of love

You're the joy
The song in my heart
The hope of my soul

In the shadows
In the sorrows
In the desert
When the pain hits
You are constant
Ever-present
You're the song of my heart

You're the joy joy joy lighting my soul
The joy joy joy making me whole
Though I'm broken, I am running
Into Your arms of love
Into Your arms
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