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Born to Dance

Accomplishing the purpose that God has for our lives is never easy…but then again, it is never the easy story that inspires us. Just like gold can only be purified in the fire, a solid character can only be forged in the flames of adversity. Do we truly want a faith that stands the test of time and trial? Then we can’t afford to run away from challenges or shrink back when fear comes knocking at the door.

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Photo credit: Tammy Schleicher, Blessed Events Photography

“Quit asking fear for permission to do that thing you know you’re supposed to do with your life.” –Jon Acuff

In just 23 days I get to watch my amazing sister Hannah graduate from high school. Hannah has taught me a thing or two about perseverance and accomplishing dreams. You see, Hannah was born with Cerebral Palsy…but she was also born to dance.

It was her dream since she was little – to be a dancer. However, she had to walk with a brace, and things that came easy for others were difficult for her. She has seen many difficult days and faced many obstacles. Still, she never gave up. I remember years ago having a conversation with her, and she told me, “Someday I want to have a dance studio for kids with disabilities.” She still has this dream to this day, and her overcoming spirit has turned into an amazing testimony for all who know her and have seen her life.

This past week, Hannah competed in a regional competition in dance and received the highest mark. She has performed in front of many people. She has taught and been invited to teach dance in several different places. This little girl, whom everyone thought was believing a pipe dream, turned out to accomplish far more than anyone ever thought possible – and her story is just beginning. I am so proud of her, and I am excited to see all that God will do in and through her in the years to come.

Accomplishing the purpose that God has for our lives is never easy…but then again, it is never the easy story that inspires us. Just like gold can only be purified in the fire, a solid character can only be forged in the flames of adversity. Do we truly want a faith that stands the test of time and trial? Then we can’t afford to run away from challenges or shrink back when fear comes knocking at the door. At the end of my life, I want my story to speak of courage, power, and triumph for the glory of God. It’s the everyday people who choose to radically believe the dreams of God who inspire us. Hannah taught me that, and she continues to inspire me every day to keep dancing in my own way for His glory.

What is that thing you know you must do with your life? Don’t let the obstacles you face define the outcome; rather let your faith define the outcome. Be courageous. Be bold. Be persistent. Be inspirational. You have one chance at this life; give it everything you’ve got!

It’s not the WHAT, It’s the WHO

If it’s about knowing Him…then I want to know Him…forget everything else. Often I have been too focused on knowing WHAT the next step is that I have forgotten WHO I am supposed to be knowing.

“We say we follow the Lord step by step, but do we really?” These were wise words spoken to me by a good friend yesterday.

It’s so true…we say so many things in church, especially singing, and we don’t take the time to figure out if we really mean them. For example, this concept of step by step…do we really understand what it means to follow that way and to trust God for what we don’t know?

I don’t remember it being hard to say “Yes” to a direct leading of God. It was not hard to say “Yes” to serve at Mount Rushmore when He opened the door to do so. Although I struggled to get over myself, the decision was easy. God said it, so I did it. Period. I wasn’t necessarily happy about it, but I did it anyway. Same with moving to Ecuador. Although I wanted to get married soon and I definitely had the opposite opinion in the matter, God said, “Go”, so I went. No questions asked.

For me, at least, it is harder to follow when the path does not seem clear; when I wonder what I am saying “Yes” to exactly. It was yesterday that I realized the lesson in all of this is the same as it was with Mount Rushmore and Ecuador – dying to self. Before, I was dying to my ideas of how my life was going to turn out and giving God my dreams and desires. Now, I am surrendering my need to see what God is doing as I continue to give up my ideas of how my life is going to turn out, and surrendering to Him my dreams and desires.

Another way to put it is this: I am surrendering my need for control and learning how to let my life be led by Love. If it’s not really about the destination, but about the journey and WHO I am journeying with, then my perspective and focus do need to change. And I think that truly makes sense when we look at our lives from an eternal point of view. What do I want God to say about me when I stand before Him one day? I can’t think of a more devastating thing than to hear from His mouth, “I never knew you. Away from Me.” If it’s about knowing Him…then I want to know Him…forget everything else. Often I have been too focused on knowing WHAT the next step is that I have forgotten WHO I am supposed to be knowing.

What did the treasure hunters in Jesus’ parables gain in selling all they owned? They gained the pearl; the treasure hidden in the field. Truly, the reward is not the satisfaction of a job well done. The reward is Jesus. He is the pearl of great price; He is the hidden treasure our hearts have been searching for. If I lose everything else, I want to rest in the knowledge that I know Him and that I am known by Him.

Are you frustrated in trying to figure out what direction your life is headed? Remember it’s not the WHAT, it’s the WHO that God is leading you toward. The WHAT happens when we truly fall in love with the WHO. Ask God to redirect your focus today.

Step by Step

Even in the fog, there is wonder filling every step. Even in times of great uncertainty, there is beauty to be found in each moment. When I realize that I was never supposed to know the outcome, I can rest in the process, because I know, love, and trust the One who walks with me along the way. He has promised to lead, and I know that He is good. And I suppose that is all I need to know.

I used to sing this song as a kid (and I think I still have the recording) called Step by Step by Rich Mullins. The lyrics to the chorus are: “Oh God, You are my God and I will ever praise You. I will seek You in the morning and I will learn to walk in Your ways and step by step You’ll lead me and I will follow You all of my days.”

Yesterday something happened that made me understand a little bit more about how this is a journey. As a kid I would sing these words, but I didn’t understand them…what does it mean to be led step by step? However, there was one thing that I have understood since I made the decision at nine years old to follow Christ: that I would follow Him all of my days. And truly, that’s all I have ever needed to know.

It’s hard not knowing what’s going to happen, but the truth is, I have never known what’s going to happen. I think back to my time in Ecuador and we had some real surprises along the way; surprises that both thrilled us and devastated us. It’s amazing how quickly life can change in a moment, like before and after a lightning strike. I understand James so much more now when he says:

“Look here, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.’ How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog – it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. What you ought to say is, ‘If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.’ Otherwise you are boasting about your own plans, and all such boasting is evil.” –James 4:13-16

People have so many questions, and sometimes I think it would be easier to follow Christ down this windy twisted path if I didn’t have to answer to the whole world – and then I realize that I don’t have to answer to the whole world. I only have to answer to Christ. And there will be people – good people – who will not understand the decisions made along the way, because it’s not their journey. They don’t hear and see the things I do because it’s not their path to walk and it’s not their voice to follow. At the end of the day I must ask myself the question: am I being obedient to where Christ has led me right now? If the answer is “yes”, then I am perfectly placed and can rest in perfect peace. All other voices must cease to affect me.

Even in the fog, there is wonder filling every step. Even in times of great uncertainty, there is beauty to be found in each moment. When I realize that I was never supposed to know the outcome, I can rest in the process, because I know, love, and trust the One who walks with me along the way. He has promised to lead, and I know that He is good. And I suppose that is all I need to know.

Maybe you have found yourself in a time of uncertainty today. Maybe you are fighting off the voices of criticism all around you. Take heart; be encouraged! May these words bring you comfort and spur you on to follow Jesus.

The Antonym of Joy

The world would tell us that we need to take time for ourselves when life gets overwhelming, and there is something to be said about a healthy balance. However, I have discovered that life is much more fulfilling when we take time for others and leave ourselves behind.

I need to be a little honest and a little vulnerable right now. For right now, let’s just talk as friends; like we’ve known each other forever.

So if I could describe the last two days, I would describe them as horrible and wonderful all wrapped into one. They were horrible because I nearly caved under a lot of pressure; wonderful because God gave me the solution I needed. Horrible because I discovered something that was lacking in my character; wonderful because I discovered that it can change.

I just spent the last two and a half years serving as a missionary in South America, investing my life into many other people. It was not easy at all, but it was fulfilling. It was not devoid of tears, but there was always joy. Why? You could say that it was because I was in the center of God’s will, and in the center of God’s will there is joy. However, I found that there is a little more to it than that, because I have been in the center of God’s will for the past two months as well, but I watched the joy being sucked more and more out of my life as time went along. I saw lethargy and apathy taking over my life. I grew depressed. I lost a lot of my desire to keep moving forward, and to be honest, I hadn’t felt that way in a LONG time and it scared me. I kept thinking, “Is this the culture shock that I was told would set in?”

Fundraising is really hard, not only because I hate asking for money (can I get an ‘amen’ from everyone out there who is fundraising?), but also because people who have never had to do it on a large level before don’t understand how all-consuming it can be. People ask me what I have been doing with my life, and it’s extremely hard to explain that fundraising and figuring out my next job has been a worthwhile and responsible way to spend my time. “Are you working anywhere?” Somehow, “Yes, I’ve been fundraising” is not a good enough answer. And I get it…if someone has never done it before (and I’m not talking about a mission trip here, I’m talking tens of thousands of dollars), then it’s logical how that answer would not make sense.

The thing that almost destroyed my heart, however, is how much the focus has changed in my life. I spent the last two and a half years investing in other people, only to return to the States and spend a ton of time in front of people, on the phone with people, writing letters to people, asking them to give ME money, so I can go out and continue serving. Even though I am not one that naturally enjoys being the center of attention, it’s not just a personality preference. It became a dangerous thing for me. Being a guest speaker in many churches, youth groups, etc. has put me in the limelight, and it has been about me, me, me. Although it has been humbling to see several people gathering around me and supporting me, I have been the center of attention a little…or a lot…too much.

It’s easy for life to get that way, right? It’s easy to start to think that way. Life can be all-consuming and it can be very difficult. When we are not only trying to move mountains but an entire mountain range, it’s easy to put on the blinders and get engrossed in our own little world. The problem with that is this: it goes against the desire of God for our lives and becomes bitter poison to our hearts. I drank that poison, and I was sick.

I had become so consumed with myself and my particular problems that I had lost the art of serving others. There was no giving in my life; only receiving. There was no sacrifice for others; only sacrifice for my future. The world would tell us that we need to take time for ourselves when life gets overwhelming, and there is something to be said about a healthy balance. However, I have discovered that life is much more fulfilling when we take time for others and leave ourselves behind.

Being a creative person, there is no end to my imagination in how I can be a blessing to those around me. There are, however, many things in my character that stand in the way. Selfishness, for one. Pride, for another. Laziness, for another. All three must die for humility to come to full expression in my life, and the Bible says that it is the pure in heart that will see God. So Lord, make me pure in heart.

What about you? You didn’t think I would leave you off the hook now, did you? It’s time for you to take action. Discover the joy that can only be found in giving your life away. Start with something small. Bake cookies for your neighbor. Knit a scarf for a lonely person at the hospital. Serve dinner at the local homeless shelter. Get out there and DO something for someone else; not so you can look good, but so that someone else might see a light in you. Let the smile of heaven be your reward. There’s so much more to life than YOU…go look for Jesus in the eyes of the people around you.

Believe in Me

It has been Heaven’s hand time and time again that has reached down and lifted up my head. In my lowest moments, He is there. In my greatest doubts, He is there. Amidst a million questions and just as many fears, He is always there. He speaks life into me through these simple words, “I believe in you”, and He shows me that belief, not by taking away the challenges, but by strengthening me through them.

“I have realized that there are four words that may hold more power than the most eloquent of greeting cards or all the length of Tennyson’s poetry: ‘I believe in you.’” –Bethany Haley Williams

The longer I live, the more I admire people who do remarkable things with their lives. As a kid, the sky is the limit and we are expected to dream big. However, somewhere along the way, dreams get shot down for the sake of reality and swimming upstream becomes more and more impossible. Before long, it’s not swimming upstream, but we’re jumping waterfalls. Our society in general does not encourage the one who might seek to make it better; and to the one who might challenge the status quo, even for noble reasons, must fight the masses to see positive change take place.

I think it is because we are all so self-focused, and I see it in myself as well. We don’t want to be inconvenienced, especially if we personally see no return for our efforts. And oh we complain when we see injustice – not injustice in the noble sense – but rather injustice when plans don’t go our way or someone put the bread in the wrong place. We will give of ourselves as long as it doesn’t hurt, and then pat ourselves on the back for having done something good.

We are called to live lives of love, but what does love look like? In Francesca Battistelli’s song “Worth It”, she says, “Love’s not a feeling, love’s not convenient, but I know love will change your life. Love takes sacrifice, love cuts like a knife, sometimes love will make you cry. Love’s not easy, but it’s worth it.” I wonder…how many of us have the courage to love the people around us with that kind of love? I wonder if I have the courage to love the people around me with that kind of love. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in my little world, my special pain, and my all-consuming challenges to overcome. And yet I find, try as I might to work out the situation, that I still have my pain and my challenges. It’s like running in place; I might burn a few calories, but I’m certainly not getting anywhere.

And what are we trying to accomplish? What are we trying to prove? I think it is the cry of the human heart to somehow earn a glance from someone else, to win the right to say, “I’m worth it. You can believe in me.” However, what happens to the kid who stumbles along the way, the one who was doing so well and then trips up? Perhaps it is not when he is doing well that he needs to hear it most; but rather when he falls. Perhaps it is not when he has proved himself worthy that these words hold power, but rather when his world has caved in and he is left staring at a wall; when he is left wondering if he even has it in him. Maybe it’s in the moment when the cost is greater than his stored-away strength; when the demand is greater than the supply that he needs someone to come in and say, “I believe in you.”

I think about people like Helen Keller and I am blown away. If there was ever someone with marks against her doing anything with her life, it was Helen. She was blind and deaf in a time when there was not much available to help her. However, someone came into her life who went above and beyond the duty of a teacher and who refused to allow Helen to live under the excuses of her situation. Anne Sullivan believed in Helen, and that belief changed her life and ultimately made a huge mark in history. I wonder if at the time when she took the job of teaching seven-year-old Helen, Anne even entertained the thought that this student would be her greatest legacy. And who are we to say that the minor investments we make in other peoples’ lives could not turn into our greatest legacy as well?

Perhaps we find the love we need the most when we give it away. Perhaps it is in stepping out of our own little world and into the world of someone else that we find the colors coming alive in our own life. Perhaps it is in looking someone in the eyes in the moment of their greatest struggle and saying, “I believe in you” that we find the strength to face our own challenges.

I have to believe that we can create the kind of community that builds people up rather than tearing them down; a society that reaches for the stars together. That’s how it should be, at least in the Church. So often it hasn’t been, but I haven’t given up hope that it could be that way. Why? Because that is the heart of Jesus. He stepped out of His perfect world only to be killed in ours…and that for love. If there is anyone who understands what it means to love until it hurts, it’s Jesus, who shouted from the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing.” And in His death, He showed us the true heart of the matter.

Jesus believes in us, not for what we can do, but for who we are: in success and failure, in victory and in defeat. Through His death, He shouted, “You’re worth it.” If there was anything that humankind proved that day on Golgotha, it was its ability to be cruel and incredibly unwise. We killed the Son of God in the worst possible way, the very one who came to save us. We did not earn that glance from heaven; we did not win the right to say, “I’m worth it.” Rather we earned hell. Plain and simple. However, by grace we are given something so different.

It has been Heaven’s hand time and time again that has reached down and lifted up my head. In my lowest moments, He is there. In my greatest doubts, He is there. Amidst a million questions and just as many fears, He is always there. He speaks life into me through these simple words, “I believe in you”, and He shows me that belief, not by taking away the challenges, but by strengthening me through them. And we’re going to get through this.

Because my God believes in me, I can believe in others. I can believe for others when they struggle to believe in themselves. It’s God’s love that has touched my own life that gives me the courage to love others, even when it hurts, even when it’s inconvenient, even when I see no return for what I am giving. I pray that God would give me the grace to live that out every day, and I pray He would do the same for you.

It’s the Journey

I believe that each day holds treasures to be discovered and memories just waiting to be made. I still have goals and dreams, but I hold them loosely in my hand. If I must be stubborn for one thing, I will be stubborn for this: to know Christ in all His beauty and radiance. After all, it’s Him that I’m truly following.

Last night as I was cleaning off my computer, I ran across a file that brought back some memories, and it shook me up. As I erased it, I knew that I needed to deal with the feelings that it brought up, so I called my best friend. As she listened to me talk through past decisions and current conundrums, she spoke into a very important truth that I needed to remember.

So many times we goal-oriented people can get so caught up in destinations. “I just need to get to my next job.” “I just need to get married.” “I just need to step into my calling.” “I just need my character to be fully formed in this way.” One thing that we forget is that often the “destination” is not the most important part; the journey is. It’s in the journey that we fall down, get back up, find grace, learn, and grow.

I think it’s people like me that keep God from showing much about the future. I used to desire that God would give me billboards about what direction He wants me to go in or where I will someday end up. However, I have come to realize that I don’t handle those billboards well. In those few select times that God has given me that knowledge, I respond in one of two ways: I either become completely overwhelmed and paralyzed by my fear in the enormity of it all, or I put on blinders and I run as fast as I can toward that destination. And I miss out; I totally miss out on perhaps the most beautiful part: the journey.

And can I speak to my precious single girl friends? I totally understand the loneliness and the doubts and the questions and the fear that this will last forever. But can I give you a word of caution? Perhaps something to file away until the right guy comes along. One thing I also understand about girls is that so often we are dangerously focused on this goal: to get married. We want to meet the right guy and have it all go down fast, because we “know what we want” and “why waste time”. While every situation is different, I think the heart of the matter is this: it is a dangerous thing to consider marriage a “destination.” I think the focus should not be getting married as quickly as possible, but rather in growing the relationship. Of all the married people that I have talked to, the ones that are truly happy in their marriage are the ones who have learned to enjoy the journey together in every stage, phase, and season. They are the ones that don’t rush toward destinations, but realize that every experience they have along the way, expected or unexpected, has the potential to draw them closer to each other. They delight in the small things, and they relish in every opportunity that comes their way. That is definitely the kind of relationship that I want someday.

Our experiences have a powerful potential to either wound us or create strong character in us. Our experiences also have the potential of tainting our reality when not seen through the lens of truth. When I think about the things that I have experienced in my life, I realize that I have, just like everyone else, experienced a lot of pain. For many years, I harbored bitterness toward God for all that He let me go through. I determined that He could not possibly be good, because what good God would have let a child experience such terror for years and let her suffer with so much physical pain for the other half of her life? Time after time, I lost what was precious to me. I saw God as a harsh Being who only wanted me to suffer. I have thought many times in my life, “If God is so good, then why is it all pain and no joy? Where is the ‘He gives and takes away?’ because I only see the ‘He takes away’ portion. It’s not fair.”

Then I boarded a plane and moved to South America and God not only changed my life, but He changed the way I see. He saw my stubborn and bitter heart, and there is no other way to say it but that He broke me. For the first time that I can remember, I truly understood what it meant to feel loved by Him and by others, and to believe in that love even when I couldn’t feel it. I had lived in darkness for so long; my reality so distorted. For my whole life, I was always running from one destination to the next; one dream to the next, but I was never satisfied. I would reach a goal, but I was not happy because there were always a hundred more goals waiting for me to accomplish. So much striving, disappointment, and frustration…and my big regret for the first 25 years of my life is that I totally missed the journey.

I believe that each day holds treasures to be discovered and memories just waiting to be made. I still have goals and dreams, but I hold them loosely in my hand. If I must be stubborn for one thing, I will be stubborn for this: to know Christ in all His beauty and radiance. After all, it’s Him that I’m truly following.

Don’t miss the journey in your search to accomplish. Don’t miss the scenery along the way. Don’t miss the memories that could have been made. There is so much richness hidden in the precious moments that we so often pass by. Ask God to teach you how to let go of what is past and to trust Him for your tomorrow, so you can be free to experience all that today has to offer.

I Could Never

God alone knows what you are capable of, and in the big things as well as the small things, don’t allow the phrase “I could never” to grow in your mind. Simply let your “yes” be “yes” in obedience to His voice, one step at a time. And someday you will look back and be amazed at what God could do through you.

This morning I was continuing to read a book that has been both inspiring and challenging to me. Today I reached a point in the book where she was talking about how her passion for the children of war-torn Africa had led her to write a few different types of curriculum for healing and step into political activism. I literally put down the book. I could not keep reading. The thought that went through my head was, “I could never do something like that.”

In fact, that thought has gone through my head a lot lately. Sometimes it’s not simply, “I could never do something like that”, but rather, “I could NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS do something like that.” I realized today when I hit that wall that this is a phrase I need to cut out of my self-talk. If I can truly do ALL THINGS through Christ who gives me strength, then I need to stop believing the lie that all these things are impossible for me, a child of God.

Now, it is very true that I will never win a Nobel Prize for discovering the cure for cancer. Probably because I am not into chemistry or numbers or whatever branch of science that would require to begin with. I am not called to be a scientist, and I have no problem with that.

I am, however, talking about the things that we face in our lives related to our calling; our “anything but that, but I know I have to do that” kinds of things. We all have them, and we all face the decision to entertain the lies that say it is simply impossible and that we don’t have what it takes.

The thing we must understand is that godly ambition is not the opposite of humility. Humility is seeing God in His rightful perspective and myself in my rightful perspective. I recognize that without His help, I could not do these things. However, bowing to the pressure of a situation and degrading myself is not humility; it is a slap in the face to the God who created me, believed in me, and called me to do it. As humans we stumble and sometimes we fall, but we can’t give into the temptation to stay there. The beauty of grace is that it picks us up, brushes us off, and sends us once again.

God alone knows what you are capable of, and in the big things as well as the small things, don’t allow the phrase “I could never” to grow in your mind. Simply let your “yes” be “yes” in obedience to His voice, one step at a time. And someday you will look back and be amazed at what God could do through you.

He Loves Me

What a precious thing it is to be pursued, to be believed in, to be held. In times when I can’t perceive a clear direction, I can trust His heart…His beautiful heart that loves me.

“I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His presence. I couldn’t run, couldn’t run from His arms.” –Chris Tomlin

There are seasons in life when everything is confusing and overwhelming. It seems like everything is in hyper drive. Right now I feel that God has given me so much opportunity for ministry, many ways to use my talents in my job, a calling to step it up in several areas of my life, and an increased awareness of His complexity. And on top of that, Satan is on hyper alert and is doing his best to discourage and speak into the situation. This is one of the times when I don’t have to wonder what God is trying to teach me and form in me; and that’s a good thing, because it’s hard enough to simply surrender. If I could describe what is going on in my heart and mind right now, I would simply tell you that it’s LOUD. There’s just so much noise, and it’s exhausting.

However, God has a way of breaking through the pandemonium in His own sweet way. When it seems like we don’t know which way is up, He sweeps in and centers us. God has been doing that for me in a unique way.

There is a really popular song on the radio right now by Chris Tomlin called “Jesus Loves Me”. Usually I get sick of songs playing all the time, but there is something different about this song. It seems to come on when I am in a particularly difficult spot, and not just in my car but in other places too. It’s like I can’t get away from this song, and the chorus simply says, “Jesus, He loves me, He is for me.” It is such a simple truth, but one that pierces the clamor and quiets my heart every time. “He loves me”…the absolute most important truth in all of history.

What a precious thing it is to be pursued, to be believed in, to be held. In times when I can’t perceive a clear direction, I can trust His heart…His beautiful heart that loves me. I can trust His arms that carry me. I can trust His eyes that see me as I am with all my fears and weaknesses but still believe in me. And it’s this love…this powerful love that is my refuge.

“Jesus, He loves me, how can it be? He loves me, He is for me.” Let that truth guard your heart today.

Worship

“As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for You, O God. I thirst for God, the living God. When can I go and stand before Him?” –Psalm 42:1-2

Lord, in my thirst, be the well that never runs dry.

“Day and night I have only tears for food, while my enemies continually taunt me, saying, ‘Where is this God of yours?’” –Psalm 42:3

Lord, in the darkness of my uncertainty, be my guiding light.

“My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be: I walked among the crowds of worshipers, leading a great procession to the house of God, singing for joy and giving thanks amid the sound of great celebration.” –Psalm 42:4

Lord, renew the passion in my heart for your presence. May I sing for joy to You!

“Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again – my Savior and my God! Now I am deeply discouraged, but I will remember You.” –Psalm 42:5-6a

Lord, you turn my mourning into joyful dancing! You remind me that You are good! You remind me that You are constantly working all things for good! Therefore, I will trust You day to day, that You will lead me into the purpose that You have for me. I will trust You to write Your amazing story on my heart and through my life.

“I hear the tumult of the raging seas as Your waves and surging tides sweep over me. But each day the Lord pours His unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing His songs, praying to God who gives me life.” –Psalm 42:7-8

Lord, take me back to that day in Peru when Your waves of love swept over me. Remind me how it felt to be engulfed in Your love. Bring to mind what it was like to play in Your presence like a little child that was free. May I worship You every day in this way.

“When everything is shaken, and everything is taken

When circumstances come to tempt me

When death and sorrow surround me and pain, it tends to grip me

I’ll still believe.

I want to be like Mary, sitting at Your feet

Lavishing my love upon You

How I choose that one thing, I give all for love

Surrendering everything for You.

You are my great reward, You’re who I’m longing for

My beautiful inheritance, Jesus.

You’ve given me Yourself, You’ve given me Yourself,

You’ve given me Yourself, You are enough.”

-“You Are My Great Reward” by Christina Reynolds

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