Life Verse

"Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me"

Psalm 51:10

Monday, March 25, 2013

Worship with Abandon

Psalms 29:2 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.

I used to care a lot about appearances.  I've gotten over it in the past few years.  One of the areas that I was very self conscious about was expressing myself during worship.  I grew up with the dusty old Baptist hymnal, usually mumbling along with the sound of the organ. I am thankful for Fanny Crosby and her beautiful hymns, but at the time, my worship was passionless.  In college, I was introduced to the newfangled idea of clapping to praise songs and there was a (gasp!) drum set on stage.  In my young married life, we have tasted different levels of worship in the different communities that we have been a part of.  Each church seemed a little edgier than the last when it came to the worship portion of the service.  We now go to a church that is all about worship.  It's not about the band up front, it is not even always about the music.  It is about surrendering yourself to Jesus and giving Him honor and praise with abandon in all areas of your life.  I have never felt so free, so connected to my Lord.  I now know what it means to truly worship.  I don't feel ashamed to lift up my hands in praise or desperation.  I can't help but to abandon my inhibitions when it comes to Jesus.  I clap, I dance,I cry, I  pray, I lift up my voice.   I just want to be open to my Father.  I listen more carefully when I pray, read scripture and look upon His creation.  I am more thoughtful to how I can show Jesus to those around me.  It's all worship and it's all about letting go.  I have abandoned my old thoughts of worship and I have embraced this new, authentic relationship that I have found.  I'm alive and so is He!  Praise Him!

Psalms 150 Praise the LORD! 
Praise God in his sanctuary; 
praise him in his mighty heavens! 
Praise him for his mighty deeds;
praise him according to his excellent greatness! Praise him with trumpet sound; 
praise him with lute and harp! 
Praise him with tambourine and dance; 
praise him with strings and pipe! 
Praise him with sounding cymbals;
praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
Praise the LORD!

James 4:8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you…

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The Green Living Bible

I quietly creep out of my room and into the living room.  The sun is streaming in and the dust particles are dancing through the beams.  My grandma is sitting in her chair, reading her Bible.  Just where I knew she would be.  Her green living Bible is in her lap and coffee is at her side.  She's been up for awhile, first making a big breakfast for my grandpa.  She was such a good example of a helpmate.  Next, she got her coffee and headed to the chair by the big picture window.  She would pray and spend time reading.  It was like this every time I visited.  I could count on it.

When my grandma died on March 17, 2005, I knew that the Bible was what I wanted to have as a memento of her.  I opened the worn, cracked cover and saw a dedication on the front.  She and my grandpa had been given this Bible as a gift on Dec. 25, 1975--the week I was born.  I felt like I was meant to have it.  This Bible has been such a blessing to me.  My grandma did not only leave a spiritual legacy to me through her actions, but through her Bible.  I love reading the notes she has written in the margins.  There are also prayer requests from when she must not have had paper to write on.  She has taped favorite devotionals from the Upper Room.  The verses that meant something to her are underlined.  It is such a gift!

She passed her Christian heritage onto me, not by lecturing, but by living. If I hadn't grown up with her as an example, I'm not sure where I would be.  I want to be just like her.  Thank you, Lord, for placing her in my life and for allowing me to still learn from her through her Bible.